This is a reference to real Cap, who is that hope. (I ignore canon when it's dumb. Such as with Nick Spencer, who apparently hasn't realized that stories are powerful and as a certain someone says, that means you've got a responsibility. I'll avoid being vulgar and just say that I sincerely hope your actions will come around and bite you in the butt.)
Buffy the Vampire Slayer/Marvel Crossover AU (Self-Made Hero: The Infinity Mirror)
Summary: A little teaser for the Buffy we'll get in The Infinity Mirror. She's the Buffy from the asylum, only she's not exactly crazy. She remembers events that have happened to her in different dimensions and can't always keep track of what universe she's currently in or whose memories are which.
Word Count: 595
Buffy stops eating a pancake midway through, completely oblivious to the syrup escaping and dripping onto the table. If she’d noticed Xander’s eyes follow every drop, she probably would have realized the sacrilege that it is, but she’s too busy following the thought. “I remember something else,” she says slowly, trying to get used to the idea that someone would actually listen to anything she says and not just dismiss it as lies. And with the way Xander leans forward, actively waiting on her word, now, she has that listener. “In another dimension, I’m Lady Liberty, I guess.”
Xander quirks an eyebrow in an awfully familiar way that she actively recognizes from Tony, now that she thinks about it. “Captain America,” she elaborates, because, oh yeah, that’s right, her male counterparts get a cooler name. “They made me change my real name.” She doesn’t remember what to; it’s horribly clichéd no matter what era it’s from.
That’s the frown Tony makes when he’s horribly offended and about to ruin someone’s day. “That’s all very super sexist. Bet they sanitized the movies.”
“I’m sure they sanitized everything, but…” Now that she thinks about it, it’s natural for her to feel a kinship to a guy who wanted to help and was given powers but was thrown into a fight without too much preparation or support. And then found himself way out of his depth, but kept trying anyway. And then she processes the idea of Xander, of Tony, discussing something as being sexist while looking offended, and she snorts. Very unladylike.
He steals a bit of her bacon while she’s not looking, which earns a death glare. Still, stuff like that, it tends to be a distraction so she doesn’t look too close at something else, so… “You definitely weren’t one of the worst Tonys. But then, Howard was locked up for being a jerk a while ago and Jarvis practically raised you, so…”
He flashes one of the patented camera smiles at her and relaxes a little. Then he winces.
“What? Are you all right?” she asks. He might think she’s oblivious to the migraines, but when he keeps having to take aspirin a lot, she notices.
“Just a memory flash. Not a full personality,” he reassures her before looking thoughtful. “I could make you your shield, you know.”
Now it’s her turn to frown. “There’s no vibranium in this dimension, and I don’t think others would take too kindly to you entering their world just to obtain some.”
“Where we’re going, we don’t need vibranium,” Xander says in a good imitation of Doc Brown, and his smile turns smug and catlike when that startles a laugh out of her. “See? Made you laugh.” And there’s Xander, Captain of Team Morale. “I made the Exoskel. Bet I could whip something up.”
“I’m not going to take that bet. I’m not stupid. I technically don’t have any money.” And now that she’s opening her mind up to that, doesn’t this feel just familiar?
“Don’t worry, I’ve got you covered.” Before she can open her mouth to complain, he holds up a placating hand. “If nothing else, call it services rendered for saving the world. I am of the extreme and just opinion that those fat idiots of the Council should’ve thought about hazard pay before they gave themselves an lazy man’s salary.”
If she thinks about the pay like being a soldier, it rankles less, so she shuts up as Xander goes on another wild story complete with gestures and just lets herself relax. With pancakes.