I skidded to a stop just outside of the building and heard a huge crash behind me as dust bellowed out of the open door .
"No!" I hugged Bennett close as she began to scream for her sister. I felt my knees begin to shake and handed her to her mother before I lost my grip. From the looks on everyone's faces I guessed what had happened. I span round and darted back into the building but couldn't see a thing. The hall was blocked with debris and I couldn't get any further. The rock was so thick that when beat against the stone it wouldn't move an inch.
From beyond the wreckage there came an ear splitting scream that turned the blood to ice in my veins "Blake!" I shouted as loud as I could but got no response. The only sounds now were of shifting rubble. If I didn't get in there soon she'd be completely buried.
I grabbed my sister and brought her back in, maybe she could do something to get me in there. She looked in horror at the mess and squeezed my hand "She's still in there." I said and her eyes went wide
"We have to get her out" she said in a shaky voice. I caught her arm and dashed up the stairs to the room above the lab. The floor was all but gone and mounds of rubble had fallen into the room below. I couldn't see Blake at all so she had to be somewhere underneath it all.
"Can you move it?" I asked but she was already working, I saw her fall to her knees as the weight of the rubble was lifted out of the room. With one last effort she threw it through a window at the back of the building and smashed through the wall. I hoisted her and myself down into the room and scanned around.
Someone's limp form was splayed in the corner of the room under a ceiling beam. It was Blake, she lay in a heap on the floor bleeding from her head. I darted to her side and lifted the beam off her but she still wasn't moving even when I pulled her head onto my knee. A hot substance dripped onto my leg and I saw a huge chunk of metal protruding from her ankle leaking blood all over the ground. I gritted my teeth trying not to think of the pain she was in.
I looked up at Wanda seeking advice, comfort, something! But she just looked down at the broken body in my arms as if she wasn't even in the room.
"Blake! Hey come on, open your eyes." I shook her slightly and saw her eyelids flutter.
She groaned and tried to focus on me "Pietro? I'm..cold" she mumbled and Wanda crouched down next to her laying her jacket on top of Blake, that wouldn't do much good if we couldn't stop the bleeding though.
Blood was streaked down the side of her face from the gash on her head. I tried to slow it with a my sleeve but it stained so quickly it didn't do a thing to help. My bloody fingers began to tremble as her head fell to the side "No don't you dare, stay awake!" I said hearing my voice crack. Her eyes closed again and her breathing started to get shallower and shallower.
That was it. I grabbed her and lifted her into my arms. Wanda finally came to life "Watch her head" she shouted.
"I know." I said cradling Blake's head so I didn't hurt her "Now get us out of here." I felt the tiniest hint of guilt for talking to her like that but considering the situation I knew she'd never hold it against me. She blasted our way out of the room and I ran outside.
"Romanoff, jet now." I shouted and Steve moved forward to take Blake from me "I got her Rogers." I snapped moving back. I looked at Natasha, she recovered from her shock enough to run towards the jet. A few Hydra agents were laying on the ground their hands strapped to posts on the fence. If I had my way they'd all be dead by now. I heard Blake's family screaming behind me and tried not to turn. Steve put his hand on my shoulder and looked at me very seriously.
"I'll stay with them, you get her help." I nodded and took off. Natasha was already in her seat and ready to go when something jammed the doors from the outside and Wanda slipped through. I sighed with relief. I needed her here. Natasha took off right away and I tried to absorb most of the shock to keep my arms steady. Wanda laid out a life jacket from the wall and I lowered Blake's head onto it.
I looked down at her then for the first time since leaving the building and felt my heart stop. All the life and colour had gone from her skin, it was deathly pale and stained with dark blood. Smeared red finger prints covered her cheek from where I'd been holding her. Her lips were parted as she drew in long rattling breaths. I should have gone back for her sooner, it should have been me under that rubble. I stood up and kicked a crate swearing loudly.
"Pietro!" said Wanda from the ground holding Blake's hand "Stop."
I dragged my slick fingers through my hair and pointed back at Blake "Look at her Wanda, she is going to die if she doesn't get help soon. This stupid thing isn't going fast enough!" I lashed out at the wall and felt my knuckles split. Wanda jumped to her feet and pulled my hands together.
"She is not going to die. Do you understand" she said shaking me "We won't let her." I pulled her into a hug to try to calm myself.
"I can't lose her" I said into her hair and felt her nod.
"I can't either, she's like my sister." she said trying to conceal a sob
A moment later Blake's body began convulsing.
"She's going into shock" yelled Natasha from the cock pit. She shouted commands at the dashboard and jumped over the back of her seat "Epinephrine, top box." she said pointing to the med kit. I grabbed it and threw it to her. Wanda buried her face in my chest as Natasha stabbed the needle into Blake's leg. After a few seconds her body relaxed and went limp.
"C'mon kiddo breath." she said thickly shaking Blake's hand "Sweetie come on." It worked, Blake started to breathe again but just barely. Natasha wiped her arm across her head. I hadn't seen her this worried since Sokovia. "We'll never make it." she said finally and Wanda stepped forward.
"Yes she will." she said and turned to me. I caught on immediately
"Romanoff let me out." I said moving towards her "I can get there faster."
"No offense but carrying another person, I don't know if you will."
I stooped down and gathered Blake up in my arms. "Natasha, I have to." I said and she looked on the verge of disagreeing "I can always get Wanda to lower the jet from the inside." I added in a threatening tone. Natasha looked at me and then marched up the wheel. "You get that kid help or I swear to god Maximoff-" I heard her voice catch and understood. She couldn't lose Blake anymore than the rest of us could.
The jet lowered and the hanger doors opened. I glanced back at Wanda "Let them know we're coming." I said tightening my grip on Blake and sped off.
We made it back to base in less than five minutes. I felt like my sides were going to split open with agony and my arms shook violently. A few times I'd heard her breathing stop and my heart did the same. Each time she started again it was quieter than before.
I stumbled into the medical ward and placed her onto a bed. Doctors seemed to surge from every door and push me aside. "You can't stay here." one said and started to pull me from the room. I wrenched arm back and gave him a dangerous look.
"Get off me." he made another attempt to make me leave and I was ready to fight him when Clint burst into the room. He came to a halt when he saw Blake.
"Oh god. What's happening?" he said rushing to my side. The doctor dismissed us and joined the group flocking around her bed.
"Hydra, they had her family. Her sister, she..she saved her. There was an explosion." Blake let out a strangled scream as the doctors moved to examine her head. I cringed feeling like I was going to either fall apart or lose my mind and Clint gripped my shoulder tightly. It did little to help but I knew I wasn't alone.
"She's strong, she'll get through this." he said
Just then I heard the worst sound in the world. The heart monitor flat lining.
I slummed forward putting my head in my hands and Clint held me up. "Come on kid you can do this." he murmured over my head whether to me or Blake I didn't know.
I pushed my fingers to my temples and presses hard to stop myself springing up. The silence seemed to stretch on and I thought it would never end. What would I do if it never started again? I remembered the grief of losing my parents, I couldn't go through that again, not without her. I heard a small beep and my head shot up. It came again and laughed out loud with relief.
The doctors fumbled around and got back to work. After a tense ten minutes they seemed to have stabilized her. Clint shook my shoulders.
"What did I say, she's a fighter."
"Can I see her?" I asked the same doctor I'd nearly knocked out. He looked me over seeming to get I wasn't in the fighting mood at the moment and nodded.
I walked over and fell down into the small chair next to her bed. A large bandage covered the side of her forehead and tubes were hooked up to her wrist. I slipped my fingers into hers and rested my head on her arm. Her skin was cooler than it should have been. I could feel the rhythmic pump of her heart under my touch and didn't think I'd ever hear anything more perfect.
"You promised." I said quietly lifting my head to look at her "I won't leave if you don't, remember?" I didn't know what I expected. Her eyes stayed closed and the only movement was the steady rise and fall of her chest. I reached up and brushed her fringe from her eyes. How could she still be this beautiful, she looked so peaceful, almost like she was sleeping. There was something missing though and the constant fight she had seemed to have disappeared.
"Maximoff?" I turned to see a doctor standing next to me. She looked down at me with pity. I wished she wouldn't. "I have to tell you she is stable at the moment but that could change, perhaps contact her family?"
"They already know" I said sternly wanting her to leave
"We spotted some damage to her head, we won't know the full extent until..well if she wakes up." I nodded but she still wouldn't leave "You should know that if you'd got her here any later, she'd be dead." she said finally before walking off down the ward. Was that suppose to make me feel better? It did a shit job.
Clint strolled up to the doors as Wanda and Natasha came running in. I saw him gesture to the bed and back to me. Their faces fell and I caught Wanda's eye from across the room. She came to stand behind me and took my free hand.
"You got her home." she said looking at Blake with tears in her eyes. I glanced over at Barton and Natasha. They finished talking and she stalked out of the room.
"Nat! Where are you going?" he yelled after her
"To make those sons of a bitches talk." she said as the doors swung shut behind her.