Sure, there are great tragedies in literature and screen histories. But that doesn’t mean we have to accept them as canon. Sometimes writers just need a bit of help finding the right ending. So we’re here for them – and you – with our series providing solace and truth and happy endings for everyone.
After Chris Evans announced he won’t return to the MCU after Avengers 4, rumours have abounded that Captain America is going to die.
But we at romance.com.au know better. After all, death cannot stop true love. All it can do is delay it awhile…
Don’t worry – there are no Infinity War spoilers ahead! Just our humble contribution to the story of Steve Rogers, who deserves to find his happy ever after with his true love (who is not “Sharon Carter” if that even is your name).
No…not dead. Not dead. Lost in time. Again. Lost to time.
He blinks. Blinks again. A room comes slowly into focus. Opulent. Lots of gold and red, dark wood on the tables and the bar. Maybe it’s the candlelight supplementing the electricity, but it feels softer, warmer. Heavy curtains line the windows, but they’re open and the city’s skyline is visible through the glass. The room is crowded and elegantly dressed, pin curls and sharply pressed uniforms.
He closes his eyes, shakes his head. Shakes it again. The scene doesn’t change when he opens his eyes. Where is the fight? Where are his friends? Natasha? Banner? Tony?
Battle roars and gunshots have been replaced by the bright sounds of a brass band. Steve realises he’s standing in the doorway when a laughing couple bump into him, the man bouncing back a few inches before sending him an apologetic grin. His girl has hold of his hand and pulls him through the maze of tables, clearly heading towards the dance floor near the front of the room. Every table is full, and cigarette smoke mixes with candle smoke to create a haze that floats above the revellers’ heads.
In a room as crowded as this, it would be difficult to find anyone. In a room as crowded as this, it should be impossible. But at the precise moment that Steve realises where he is, when he is, his gaze alights on a solitary figure at a table near the dance floor, the red of the gown and the white of her shoulders visible above the chair on which she sits. Turning to the porter, Steve asks, “Excuse me. Can you tell me what day it is?”
The porter answers, “Saturday, sir” with no indication that this question is unusual. Indeed, he must get much more unusual questions every hour of the day. Steve smiles his thanks; his heart is racing too hard for him to find the breath to say anything out loud.
Instead he focuses on the woman in red, her arm resting on the back of her chair, hand up, cigarette held elegantly in her gloved hand. Her posture is impossibly straight, military straight, though her hair is soft and curled around shoulders. Anyone not paying the closest attention would miss the slight hitch that suggested uneven breathing. He finds the air for one more question.
“It’s 10 past 8, sir.”
Then he’s moving, through the crowd, skirting the tables, his whole being focused on one goal, the only goal, his deepest preoccupation and his sweetest memory. The fire and the fantasy that visit him at night after he closes his eyes and wake him too early for true rest.
He reaches her side, unable to keep from noticing the silver slide of tears down her cheeks. As if on cue, the band shifts to something slow. He reaches out his hand, “I believe this dance is promised to me.”
The shock on her face, her red-lipped mouth a perfect O, the widening of those heavy-lashed eyes only restrict his breathing more. He’s heard about death dreams, even occasionally wished for one for himself on the very bad days, and if this is what this is then that’s OK. He’ll take it. But maybe it’s not. Maybe it’s more. Maybe it’s a life dream, a second chance, the opportunity to tie up a loose end. He thinks about everything he’s been through, everything he’s learned, everyone he’s met, and the experiences that have shaped him. It makes no sense, but they all add up to make him who he is, to prepare him for this one perfect moment, to be the man that she deserves, the man that can love her and support her and fight the battles they will face together. Her man. That perfect red mouth stretches from surprise to a smile, the cheeky dimple he can’t resist easing into existence. She butts out her cigarette on the ashtray on the table, and slips her hand into his.
Looking up into his eyes, every emotion she has dancing across her face, she stands and says, “You’re late.”
How would you like the story of Steve Rogers to end? What other characters – from any movie, TV show or book – would you like to alter the ending of?