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After Action Report by FoxGlade, steve rogers + clint barton + tony stark, the winter soldier spoilers, some humor, 2.1k
    “What’s twitter?” Steve asks, face perfectly innocent. Tony makes a distressed noise. “Don’t worry your precious antique head over it, Cap, although while we’re speaking of technology and your various problems with it, you didn’t think to call? Maybe just once? Real quick, thirty seconds tops, little bit of a warning before Helicarriers came crashing out of the atmosphere?” “I’m still having trouble with my phone,” Steve lies. Screw Natasha, he’s great at this.
    This is more humorous than I expect from post-TWS fic, but it's hilarious and I was cracking up at Steve's sense of humor and how he handles being in the 21st Century. It felt spot on for his character and I really loved the use of Tony and Clint and how the fic tied IM3 and CA2 and Avengers together! It was a much better use of Clint than I expected as well, getting in just the right amount of funny moments with more serious touching moments when needed.

Riviera Life by Omnicat, steve + natasha + sam + bucky, the winter soldier spoilers, 3k
    Sam and Steve have been traversing Europe looking for Bucky. Not everyone is convinced it isn’t an open invitation road trip.
    I don't think I stopped smiling the entire time I read this or stopped practically wiggling with joy at the reunions here. The author is talented eough to pull off what's basically fluff while still punching me in the felings, so that I was emotionally wobbling all over the place during the moments I was supposed to be. it's Steve & Bucky centric, but with Natasha and Sam along for the ride, making for happy OT4 friendship fic. Plus the reunion of the fic was really satisfying and, lbr, that's what I really here for.

and my feet stuttering to make a path by defcontwo, natasha + natasha & steve + natasha/sam, the winter solderi spoilers, 1.7k
    "Who do you want me to be?" Stop. Pause. It's the wrong question.
    Another beautiful look at Natasha, her past, her relationships with the various people around her, and who she wants to be. The lovely thing about this fic is that all these relationships sparkle in their own and varied ways, they're all different and exploring of Natasha's character, but this is, at its heart, about Natasha coming into the world as a person and it's beautiful.

A Place to Lie Low by ifeelbetter, sam & avengers, the winter soldier spoilers, humor, ~1k
    Sam gets a reputation for being the dude with a place to lie low for on-the-run Avengers.
    This author is great with the Sam pov and this may be a short fic, but it's an amazingly fun one that made me smile the hwole way through. I lvoe the idea of Sam with the Avengers and his reactions to their parade of batshit were delightful here.

Modern Careers in the Information Sciences (and Other White Lies) by melannen, steve & sam & natasha + ocs, the winter soldier spoilers, 3k
    Any agent knows that the most important thing when planning an op is information. Luckily, there's a public library right across the street from Fort Meade.
    The first part of this fic is delightful, with Steve, Sam, and Natasha trying to find Bucky post-movie, their banter doesn't try too hard and just quietly sparkles. The rest of the fic is charming outsider pov that I really liked, especially for the sheer affection for libraries that poured out of the writing. Also, Sam & Natasha doing spy stuff, especially with charming!Sam, yes, bring that on right now.

Did You Think That You Were Homeward Bound? by toomuchgawking, natasha + sam + steve + bucky, the winter soldier spoilers, 1.7k
    Natasha's relationship with the truth, Sam's relationship with the fight, and Steve and Bucky's relationship with each other. Four character sketches written in reaction to Winter Soldier.
    This is a series of four short character pieces on Natasha, Sam, Steve, and Bucky, which were lovely and all had the feeling of how these characters' stories weren't finished, that they were all stepping ont oa new leg of their journey, both physically and character-wise.

Anything You Can Bird, I Can Bird Better by ifeelbetter, clint/sam, the winter soldier spoilers, humor, ~1k
    Sam and Clint duke it out in medical over who's the best bird.
    I cackled my way through this fic as well and I desperately hope there is more of Sam interacting with the Avengers, because this was fucking gold. The author has a fantastic gif for comedic timing and joy, for real. ♥

and i have fought (in flesh and blood) by ChristinasInferno, steve & bucky, the winter soldier spoilers, 1.1k
    "He is Bucky Barnes and his best friend is Steve Rogers, and Steve Rogers is Captain America." Bucky, post-Winter Soldier.
    You can tell there is great affection for the geography in this fic, as Bucky wanders across the city and is in a sort of half-fugue state and half starting to remember things. The tone of the fic works well with a soldier mixed with someone slowly coming out of a fog and this was a lovely read.

The Care and Feeding of Traumatized Ex-Assassins by Sholio, steve & bucky + natasha + sam, the winter soldier spoilers, 6.6k
    Steve starts to notice someone's been in his apartment while he's not there. Set after Winter Soldier; spoilers.
    I tore through this like it was hardly there, because the writing was so solid and readable, my excitement at seeing Sholio in this fandom having been totally rewarded. This is a story about the tentative first few steps of whatever comes next with Steve and Bucky, the attempts at trying to communicate through what they leave behind for each other, which works beautifully as the author intends it to, that it's not communication with words or gestures or expressions or body language, but still things are conveyed between them. Bucky sneaking into Steve's apartment and going through his things, sleeping in his bed, the way Steve only feels it, not sees it, is subtle and masterful, this was a gorgeous fic that is one of my new favorites.

Glass of Milk by Lauralot, bucky & avengers, the winter soldier spoilers, 6.6k
    In which in the Winter Soldier is in the care of the Avengers. He has yet to regain his memories, but he has developed a fondness for dairy products.
    This is a sort of fluffy fic, for all that Bucky's situation is genuinely painful, but the humor is just the right amount and it's teamfic that makes you happy. Some characters suffer for it (Clint and Thor especially so) but it's light-hearted fic that's about Bucky slowly starting to come out of the fog, finding something he actually likes, starting to interact with people and forming feelings and thoughts, and the writing is utterly smooth and I tore my way through this fic so easily.

Out of the Dead Land by Anonymous, steve & bucky + natasha + sam + other marvel characters, the winter soldier spoilers, 11k wip
    It was not difficult to become someone. This he knew the way he knew how to plan an ambush, pull a trigger, blend into any crowd; it was part of what he was.
    Holy shit, this fic is amazing! I sat down to just read a bit of it before bedtime, despite that I was so tired my eyes were stining, but then I could not stop reading until I had finished all 15 parts available (at the time, I'm up to 17 as of this rec's writing and ahhhh I want more!). This is a fascinating look at the Winter Soldier without a mission, so he decides to pretend to be Bucky as a new mission, a new direction to fulfill. It's charming and funny and delightful and fucked up and horrifying all at once, just as it should be, wrapped up in such a straightforward, direct, almost clipped tone (without being boring about it!) that makes it easy to see these as Bucky's thoughts. This Bucky is so empty here and yet... maybe there's something, the fic writes all of this so very well and it's not heart-breaking, but it's not good, either and, oh, it's everything it needed to be. I'm going to haunt the meme until it's finished, I fear.

so this is how it is by dev_chieftain, steve & bucky & sam, the winter soldier spoilers, ptsd, 22k wip
    Following the events of the Winter Soldier film, Steve and Sam finally find Bucky, and work to get back to a good place.
    I meant to only read a few pages of this fic before bed, but then I honestly couldn't put this down, because it's a gorgeous look at Bucky's PTSD and trauma and how Sam is really good at his job and the way the author makes an utterly engrossing story ouf ot it. I love how Steve is not good at this despite how deeply he cares about Bucky, but that he's genuinely trying and taking note of Sam's approach and how Bucky is such a mess, but something is there. Sam is perfectly written, his charm seems effortless but his pov shows that it's not, but it's still entirely genuinely and, oh, I am so in love with him here. And the way these three work together and off of each other, the way the author writes Bucky as so confused but dangerous, maybe a glimpse of the old him still in there. The hotels and diners and shopping trips for necessities and road trips, all of it is so good as they try to navigate their way through this and help Bucky. Especially because Steve is so important, but not always the best one for this job, the author finds that exquisite balance. My only complaint is that I need more of this, I need the next 20k of it right now, because it's so good!

On Your Left by TravelingRoses, steve & bucky + steve & sam + steve & tony + steve & natasha + steve & fury + steve & thor + steve & peggy, the winter soldier spoilers, 12.9k
    Five times someone told Steve to give up looking for Bucky and two times someone didn’t. Alternately, five times someone smacked Steve on the head and said "Don't do the thing" and he continued doing the thing and two times he listened so he could keep doing the thing.
    Oh, another lovely exploration of characters and connections, all the people in Steve's life who tell him to give up or who encourage him on. Each one had their own reasons and experiences and relationship to this whole mess and that made it such a satisfying read! There were connections or feelings on Steve's search for Bucky that I often never entirely considered, but made so much sense when reading them here, that each character was chosen specifically, each of them made sense, rather than feeling like the author was working their way down a list. Add in a lot of really good detail and a painful Bucky pov scene and everything felt... dense and connected, like it should. This was a totally quality read.

Castor and Pollux by StringTheori, howard stark & steve + steve/bucky, mild the winter soldier spoilers, 2.9k
    A fic where Howard is emotionally constipated, a terrible human being, catches someone doing something, and brushes off friendships because he can.
    I have a tremendous weakness for hilarious assholes, so when sharp and funny Howard fic comes along, it's really good for me. The fic does a gorgeous job of showing that he wasn't always a good buy, but he wasn't really a bad guy, either, but a complicated one. This felt spot-on to Howard in canon for me and, oh, it was so sharply written and genuinely funny at all the right moments. It was entirely easy for me to put this together with the character I saw on the screen.

all things to all people all of the time by dirgewithoutmusic, natasha + natasha & steve + natasha & bucky + natasha & clint + natasha & others, the winter soldier spoilers, 6.1k
    On cold nights, Natasha dreamed of ballerinas: porcelain, exquisite, their ribs jutting out stark under their skin.
    What an utterly stunning piece set from Natasha's point of view, how direct and straightforward she is while also being difficult to understand, the consistency and fluidity of her, the truth and the lies of her. Everything this fic pulls from, all those moments in canon and those people we see her interacting with, are threads pull into this dazzling tapestry that is Natasha, almost like it was effortless to do. There's such understanding of her character here and I was enthralled while reading this piece from beginning to end, it's such a perfect look at her and I only wish icould write a better rec for it. A must read if you like Natasha's character, for me.

The Dawn of That Last Great Day by ignipes, steve & bucky + avengers + minor pairing references, the winter soldier speculation fic, 13.8k
    The Winter Soldier has a mission: kill Captain America.
    This is Winter Soldier speculation fic that's utterly gorgeous and I tore my way through it in one sitting because I just could not put it down. The writing itself is smooth and so readable, the author certainly knew how to build the tension so I was practically squirming in my seat for the resolution! But the other beautiful thing was the way Bucky's voice started to slowly creep back into his thoughts and words, the way it was just a turn of phrase here or there, unremarked upon and all the better for it. Then add in Bucky's interactions with every other Avenger in some way, all of them gold and emotionally impactful, and you've got a stellar fic. I was especially fond of the story Thor told and the things that were unsaid there, but you felt them, but also every time Tony was onscreen, it was a total scream. Even if you're usually only looking for canon-compliant fic, I think this one is worth reading.

Dad's Got Skeletons by kehinki, steve & tony & avengers, humor, troll!steve, 3.9k
    “To think he became a dad—your dad. A daddy.” He looked up sharply and saw that Steve’s smile had twisted a little bit, pulled up at one corner like a smirk, except no, Captain America did not smirk. “You know, it’s funny. I called him daddy once too.”
    I went into this fic just for Steve trolling the hell out of Tony, because he would, he has a great sense of humor and Tony really pretty much deserves it, but even I didn't expect to cackle my way through the fic that hard. It's beautifully time and just so, so funny! There were actual tears of laughter in my eyes by the time I was done, okay. I am all for more of Steve being hilarious, for real.

Swap by biggrstaffbunch, steve & bucky + avengers, body swap, 1.2k
    Steve and Bucky switch bodies. Nothing of substance happens from that moment on.
    A cute and silly fic of Steve and Bucky swapping bodies by accident, told in little snipets of their antics, two dumb friends who gleefully embarras each other. It's just the kind of thing to read when your heart needs something happy.

Escape by Sholio, steve & bucky, 2.4k
    Missing scene for Captain America: The First Avenger -- freeing the prisoners was just the start of getting away.
    A missing scene piece from the first movie, just after Steve rescues Bucky from the HYDRA base and the tone of it is so... exhausting,, in the way it's supposed to be. For all that Steve is a good leader, this shows how there are times when he doesn't know what to do, but just keeps wading through and figures it out eventually. That, combined with the Steve & Bucky feels, the sheer emotional weight of them, is lovely.

think of it as personality dialysis by KiaraSayre, bucky & darcy, humor, 1.4k
    "I strangled someone with a shoelace once," Barnes says. "Does that count as expressing myself through clothes?" "Uh, no."
    Darcy fic is another thing I approach cautiously, but I've liked this author's work before and so I'm glad I gave it a shot. It's silly and fun and light-hearted as Darcy takes Bucky shopping and drags him into the idea of comfortable clothes. I need that sometimes!

Name, Rank, and Serial Number by forthegreatergood, steve & bucky + other marvel characters, 1.5k
    A Nazi peeling off his skin and declaring himself beyond human doesn’t even get a rise out of him anymore, but Bucky doesn’t think he could stand it if Steve ripped off his face, too.
    This is a Bucky pov during the rescue mission from the HYDRA base and it's a mix of trying to process all this weird shit and the almost painful, heavy things Bucky is already carrying around with him. It's a lovely character piece that I enjoyed a lot!

Strawberries in Wintertime by Sholio, steve & bucky & sam & natasha & sharon, 3.2k
    Or, how Sam's apartment turns into a hangout for superheroes, spies, and rogue assassins.
    Oh, what a lovely gen piece with a combinatio nof a great Sam pov and some great Sam & Bucky interaction, the brief moments of Bucky that come through. The author does a lovely job of this group of people who are slowly becoming friends, that delicious gen OT5 dynamic, as seen through quality Sam lens!

This Lonely Hour Before Daybreak by TheOnlyCheeseLeft, steve & bucky + sam + natasha, 2.9k
    Steve knew there would be good days and bad days. That’s how this sort of thing worked. Except sometimes, the bad days go like this.
    This was short but good, about the painful process of healing that is not at all linear. There's a lot of Steve trying to be supportive and not be jealous of Bucky's relationships with other people, but always the two of them shine the brightest with each other to me and just... ugh, feelings.

Almond, Clavicle, Orchid by kvikindi, steve & bucky & sam & natasha, 4.5k
    You say, "I don't know what I am." "It's okay not to know," Steve tells you. His face is very careful. But you know. You know that it's not okay.
    This is a very bittersweet fic, one that is all about the chaos and confusion that Bucky lives as he tries to heal. The way words don't always go together, the way it feels like his mind and the very way it works is cut and scramble all to hell, nad how unsettling that was for me. The writing is lovely and I especially loved everything about Natasha here! It's not happy, but it's not unhappy, the scope focuses in on the (relatively) narrow window rather than the bigger picture, making the tone perfect. There are also loads of Steve & Bucky feelings, which I am all for.

you can't fly on dinosaurs, bucky by scorpionbythesea, steve & bucky & clint, humor, 1.2k
    Based off the tumblr post by embracingthemadness and the tag that followed: steve and bucky making up random stories from their past and convincing the other avengers that it actually happened (????) #there’s no way you guys fought nazi dinosaurs
    I am 100% here for fic where Steve and Bucky just naturally fall in line together as they troll the hell out of the other Avengers. Add in a need for happier fic after all the angst I've been reading as well as a lovely familiar intimacy in the way Steve touches Bucky and this was the balm I needed tonight!

Fly on the Wings of Love by Omnicat, steve & bucky & sam & natasha & tony & clint + some background pairings, domesticity, 13.2k
    The Wings: Bucky just wants to show his appreciation for everything Sam has done for Steve. Of course, Tony Stark’s middle name is ‘needlessly difficult’. The Love: Bucky tries to set Natasha up with Sam. He’s a bit late for that party, but he managed to find Steve’s shield and replace Sam’s wings: he’ll come up with something for her.
    Oh, this was pure joy to read, just sheer good-hearted fun, after Bucky has started to really come back to himself, including one moment that had me totally cackling out loud. It's a combination of some great Sam & Bucky, then Tony & Bucky, with a delightful Tony voice that had me grinning as Bucky tried to commission new wings for Sam. Toss in background Steve & Bucky feelings and some delightful Natasha and this was great. Happy and hilarious! I wish I could write a better rec for it, because it absolutely deserves it!

This, You Protect by owlet, steve & bucky & everyone else, humor, 64.3k
    The mission resets abruptly, from objective: kill to objective: protect
    This is an update rec, but I need to flail again about how much I love it, how the fic just embraces how ridiculous and cracky it is while still having such genuine heart. It's silly, but still gives me feelings as Bucky watches over Steve and refuses to actually talk to him, all the while his personality is reasserting itself bit by bit. But the real treasure is chapter 27, where Steve has realized that Bucky is listening in on him and he attempts to annoy Bucky into showing himself! And, oh, my god, it is perfect Steve characterization and so, so hilarious, my face hurt after that chapter, for real.
    And then one final rec, as the fic is now finished! This fic was my happy place for a long time, it was clearly having a blast being silly and ridiculous, but also knowing how to give me feelings about the characters. It was a fic that knew how to make me pine for Steve and Bucky to just meet up again already, even as I understood why Bucky was avoidiing him. It was a fic that got me to fall in love with Bucky all over again, the way snippets of his personality kept bubbling to the surface, even as he was never going to be quite the same again. It was a fic that knew how to laugh at the characters, but clearly loved them all, it was a fic that gave me such good Steve & Bucky feelings, where you could read it as more or just be happy with the friendship. It was a fic that made me laugh out loud more than once and it was a fic I would have kept following for another 64k, no matter how long it took to update. It was a hell of a joyful ride. ♥

By Choice or By Habit by Sholio, steve & bucky & natasha & clint & tony, 6.4k
    He is useful. He holds onto that. He is useful and a useful tool will not be thrown away. (For illumynare's request: How about something with Bucky realizing the Avengers actually think of him as a person? And off I went to the utterly shameless h/c place.)
    I am all for light-hearted "Bucky becomes part of the team" fic and this was charming and delightful about Bucky leaning how to deal with people and people learning how to deal with Bucky. Add in some good Bucky whump and a lot of fomcort and it did my soul so much good.

5 (+1) Times Bucky Was Already a Supersoldier by chaya, steve & bucky, 1k
    Erskine made it plain for Steve - the serum makes you stronger, faster, harder to kill, and it amplifies your existing qualities. Barnes, though, didn't get any such heads up.
    I enjoy 5 + 1 fics and this was an interesting look at several different moments where Bucky may have a little enhancement. They're all short but it was a fun read fhat night!

Thaw by dvs, steve & bucky & sam & natasha, 7.5k
    The Winter Soldier tries to find Bucky Barnes.
    Oh, this was a lovely Bucky pov that felt like a slow thaw (and thus is aptly named), that each scene is another small piece in the sense of self he's slowly building. This felt like Bucky, both for the specter of his past self that haunted his thoughts and dreams, and in how this is what Bucky would be after this kind of ordeal. The anger and confusiong and yet such sharpness and capability, the author found a balance that worked supremely well for me.

Brothers In Arms by copperbadge, steve & bucky & sam & sam & tony & pepper & clint + background tony/pepper, 11.4k
    Bucky Barnes gets a tune-up, a new pet, and a home.
    I didn't intend to read this in basically one sitting, but once I started, I couldn't put it down and it was such a fun read! The use of Tony and the bots was just the right amount and his voice felt pretty on target to me, but the real joy was in watching Bucky slowly start to come out of his shell in a way that I really bought, in a sharp and interesting way. That's the heart of the fic, as Bucky gets his own bot for physical therapy for his recalibrated arm, but the use of Steve and Sam and Tony and Clint, as they make friends in sharp and hilarious ways, was a joy to read.

You Know How I Feel, aka, The Adventures of Bucky and Muffy the Dinosaur by ifeelbetter, bucky & avengers, fluff, 4.5k
    Bucky saved a tiny dinosaur and took her home to Avengers Tower and on the way remembered how to laugh and sleep in soft beds.
    A ridiculously cute and fluffy fic about Bucky bonding with a dinosaur baby they pick up after a fight with Doom, which isn't sugary, so much as it's just really heart-warming! It's got some really fun and clever moments, some lines that put a real smile on my face, but overall it's a fluff piece that works far better than I expected it to or can really explain why! It just is really fun.

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