okay, okay, so, imagine in captain america that the serum doesn’t work and steve is still a sickly little bony guy and everyone is absolutely crushed, especially him, and erskin gets shot so there goes his last hope that he’d ever, ever make something of himself.
then: agent carter finds him, after all the fuss and recriminations, after everyone shouting that of course it wouldn’t work on someone like steve, who doesn’t have anything to work with anyway, maybe his body just couldn’t manage it, maybe his sicknesses were too much to overcome or negated the serum somehow, what a waste, what a fucking waste. carter comes to him and sits down by him and he’s just putting everything he’s got into not crying like the little baby he looks like—that he’s stuck as forever—and she’s like, i’ve been thinking about getting an assistant. someone to keep my affairs in order, and to watch my back.
and he’s like, what. and she’s like, you’re still enlisted, rogers. and he just looks at her—she’s beautiful and brilliant, she’s this stern and lethal amazon, and she says she has a place for him at her side. as a pet? as charity—no, no. never. she’d put him to use. he can hold a gun, a pistol, can’t he, if not a rifle? his hands work, don’t they? and his mind works, too, it’s quick and bold—and she looks away, quickly, embarrassed.
yeah, steve says, quiet, disbelieving, scared to hope for anything else just yet. yeah, i can hold a gun. i, i could, i would—but so can anyone else in this room so why me, why do you want me, you heard them, i’m nobody, always will be—
being underestimated, says agent carter, is just another weapon. you’ll see.
and he does.