The great “finding herself” experiment was an unmitigated disaster.
Mostly, she realized, she’d been afraid—of how much she relied on him, how much she’d come to need him in every aspect of her life. They weren’t even together—not the way she wanted them to be—and it felt like too much of her own identity was wrapped up in Steve, and she’d done the only thing she could think of. She ran. To find out who she was without the Avengers, without Steve. She’d cut him out of her life, refusing to take his calls or to answer his messages because she needed to be Darcy without Steve’s help.
It hadn’t even taken a month for her to figure out that she’d always known who she was, that nothing and no one, no matter how strong the personality, no matter how much she needed them was going to change that. Right now she was a girl who made a mistake, who missed her old life, her best friend.
But she couldn’t go back—not yet. She’d signed a contract, made a commitment. One year. She couldn’t go running back home after a month and a half. As homesick as she was, as lonely as she was, she was stuck here.
Darcy sighed, picking up the phone. There were no missed calls from Steve…not anymore; she wondered if he hated her, if he was mad at the way she’d left things. She talked to Nat weekly, both making a point not to mention Steve—Darcy because she was too proud to ask, Nat because she thought Darcy should grow a pair and call herself—and not for the first time, she wondered how he was doing.
He was on a mission, she knew that much from a pitying Pepper, but she just…she needed to hear his voice. She dialed his number, counting out the rings. One ring. Three. Five. Then finally, his voice.
His voicemail picked up, the message terse, the voice behind it so familiar, a small comfort in the emptiness of her apartment. “This is Steve. Leave a message.” A fraught silence, and Darcy waited for the beep, unsure of whether she was going to say anything. She couldn’t think of what she would say, what she could say to make up for it. But then Steve’s voice continued, softer, a little more uncertain. “And if this is Darcy, I miss you.”
Tears stung at her eyes as she thought of him, so far away, so far from her, and she knew what she needed to say. “I miss you, too.”
Aaaaand now I’m crying. DAMN IT! *hugs nessimore*