Chapter Sixteen-Dates?

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"Steve, what are we doing?" I ask with an amused smile and butterflies in my throat. He hands me my food and reaches up to the ceiling, snagging an indentation with the tips of his fingers.

"Going somewhere no one will bother us." He responds with an excited smile. A ladder unfolds and he climbs it, then rams his shoulder against the metal above until it snaps open with a sharp click. He heads out and I carefully climb up, handing him my plate when he offers a hand. Steve chuckles and offers his other hand for help. I accept and step up onto the concrete.

"Wow." I breathe. We're on the roof and are in the perfect position to see the Hudson, as well as the rest of the facility. The high sun glimmers on the water and it actually feels warm up here with the sunlight unimpeded by trees or anything. The sunlight blasts us fully and it feels fantastic. I turn back to Steve when I hear the door shut and he straightens. "Come up here often?" I question and he half-smiles.

"When I need to get away for a while, yeah. It's good to have space between the members of the team. Especially with our new arrivals." I nod along with his words and happily accept my food again when he offers it amusedly. I walk over to the edge and sit, letting the little rail of five-inch thick concrete act as my table. Steve chuckles and joins me. "No one ever comes up here, so we should be uninterrupted." My mouth quirks up, but I avoid Steve's eyes as I chew on a blissful bite of food.

"So, you bring all your girls up here?" I tease to relieve my own nerves and look up to catch his bright smile.

"Just you." He returns. His blue sapphires burn into me with an earnestness that erases all joking from my mind. I press my lips together. He's such a good man.

"I think you need to know something." I preface and he nods, expression open and interested. I sigh. "Well, uh. You know that tattoo just here?" My hand traces the shapes instinctively and his cheeks brush pink.

"Hard to forget." He flatters me and I can't stop the small smile that curves up my lips.

"Well, turns out they mean something. Tony and Bruce did my blood test again, but this time they compared it to Thor." I brace myself as he struggles to catch on. "It's a near match. Not Asgardian but definitely...alien." My eyes watch him carefully as he absorbs this.

"Alien?" He repeats with raised eyebrows. I nod slowly and flick my food with my fork. Suddenly eating isn't as important anymore. "And the tattoos?" He questions.

"Right. Thor and Loki know what race they belong to. Female warriors called Skogsra. Apparently, they died out and I'm the only remaining...queen." I add on this little fun fact and a heavy sigh shakes its way out of Steve's chest.

"Alien royalty? Like Thor and Loki." He thinks out loud, head shaking slightly in disbelief. "Maybe that's why Loki has taken such a shine to you." Steve continues and I'm not sure whether he's taking this well or badly.

"I'm sorry, Steve." I can't hold it back anymore. Surprised, his blue eyes look back to mine. "If I'd known any of this then I would've told you. I didn't-"

"Hold on." He says sternly and I pause. His eyes scan mine before his whole body softens just a bit in understanding. "Look, no matter what we find out about you now, you've always just been you. Just Reagan. I wouldn't change a thing. Except maybe trying harder to get in touch with you after that first night." We both laugh lightly and my heart warms.

"Still, Steve. I'm not sure what this entails anymore. What if you sprout blue hair?" I tease slightly to edge out the genuine worry in my voice. Steve reaches out and gingerly runs his fingers over my curled leg.

"Then at least it'll match the uniform." Laughter bursts out of me and Steve grins widely at my reaction. Then, he sobers slightly. "Besides, if any...side effects were to happen, pretty sure they would've happened before now. We'll figure it out, Rea." I reach out and grasp his fingers, shocked by the amount of comfort I find from his touch. "I'm sure this is hitting you hard." Warmth squeezes my heart at the concern in his voice and on his face.

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