|ｐａｎｔｈｅｒ (kingly) wrote in avengers_logs,|
@ 2019-08-19 07:16:00
|Entry tags:||-complete, sam wilson, t'challa|
Who: T'Challa & Sam
What: Discussing the Wakandan Outreach Centers and other...things
When: Monday evening?
Where: A place with to-die-for burgers
|Beyond the dealings with things like tridents that washed ashore (and T’Challa was honestly glad that mess had been taken care of), there was also the matter of the Wakandan outreach centers to work on - since the plan was to get the initiative going worldwide, he was currently focused on building up more. Salvador, Brazil and Wollongong, Australia and Al-Fashir, Sudan; each location presented unique challenges, but each also had a population that would benefit greatly from the programs presented. Of course, the first outreach center, the one located in Oakland, was steadily growing and achieving wonderful feats as well.|
T’Challa knew Sam would be a good fit for Oakland. He wanted to catch up, not only about the center, but about things in general. He didn’t suggest the previous pub as a meeting place but a different place that also had good burgers and typical pub fare - he’d discovered this choice because they used atchara as a burger topping, traditional pickled vegetables from the Philippines. The sweet and sour taste was vastly preferred over something like ketchup.
“I think it took me up until now to dry off from that flood mishap,” he chuckled lightly, sliding his beer glass closer to him when it was delivered (he’d definitely developed an appreciate for ale on this side of the world, he’d admit). “I really cannot stand storms. Or I should say, sometimes they are beautiful to watch.” But being in them - what was to like? Feeling water-logged in the panther habit was uncomfortable. “And how have you been, my friend? Up to anything else exciting?”
Sam was always up for trying a new place to eat and he enjoyed spending time with T’Challa, so he was pleased to meet the man at a new pub, ordering himself a burger and fries, grateful that his metabolism was still good enough to allow him to eat that way and knowing it was going to catch up with him sooner rather than later. He wasn’t getting any younger and, unlike certain people, didn’t have super soldier serum to keep him young and healthy.
“The flooding was not a good time,” Sam said. He wasn’t sure if news of his concussion and needing to be rescued by Carol had spread or not and wasn’t keen on sharing it with more people than necessary. “Hopefully we won’t have to deal with that again.”
It was rare that they had repeat incidents though. The bad guys were creative.
“I had a date,” Sam admitted. “With Carol.”
Now that the trident was safely in the care and protection of Dr. Strange, T’Challa doubted they’d have a repeat incident of that particular disaster. As far as anything else, well, who could tell - there was also the possibility of Thanos returning (an annoying repeat offender if he ever saw one), but they would deal with that as it came. And T’Challa’s science team in Wakanda would continue to monitor the potential of more undersea quakes in general.
But oh, what was this? Sam had an outing with Carol? “It has been a long time since I’ve been on a date,” T’Challa chuckled thoughtfully, sipping on his beer. Sadly true though - he just...didn’t date. It was either he and Nakia were on, or they were off, and there was nothing stable in between.
Admittedly, he wished for something stable. It might be a nice change.
“I have forgotten how they go. How did it go?”
Dating hadn’t exactly been on Sam’s radar much in the past few years either and he felt like he was very out of practice. “I think it went well,” he said. “We’ve been hanging out a fair amount.” He wasn’t going to share that he’d been pressured into asking her out by Fury because that was just too weird. Plus he felt guilty that it took him that long to work up the courage to do it.
“It’s been a while for me too though,” he admitted. “Not much time for that kind of thing when you’re constantly saving the world. Or a fugitive.”
“Certainly, I understand.” T’Challa’s own duties made it difficult for him to really stop and ask someone if they wanted to go to the movies, or dinner - he either had some long-lost cousin trying to steal the throne and eliminate a specific race of people, or he was gathering forces for a battle over infinity stones on Wakandan soil, or he was dead. That sort of thing.
No matter how it came about, he viewed it as a good thing for Sam. “You deserve companionship, my friend,” he assured. “You deserve something nice, just like anyone else in this...business.”
The business of constantly saving the world, that is.
“Don’t we all?” Sam said. After all, if Tony and Steve could settle down, the rest of them had a chance too. Right? That’s how he was trying to look at it, at least. “How about you, man? Any of the ladies around here catch your attention?”
Things were moderately less crazy here, so maybe they would actually have a chance to lead something resembling a normal life.
Okay, maybe not normal, but at least a little calmer. At least Sam wasn’t a fugitive here.
Secretly, deep down in his heart of hearts, T’Challa wished for something normal here - because if he was going to keep spending most of his time in the city, shuttling back and forth to Wakanda, he wanted his personal life to not be so...off-balance. But he would see what happened. Nothing was ever easy in this existence, he knew that much.
“Me?” He was suddenly glad to have a burger and these shoestring fries to focus on. Though admittedly, they weren’t much of a diversion. “Oh, I do not know - “ The King wasn’t great at talking about his personal life. Maybe he could make more of an effort - he had Sam to talk to and...well, that was pretty much all. As close as he was with Bucky, he assumed the Wolf’s eyes would glaze over with boredom if he brought up dating and actual relationships. “I admit I have always had a fondness for Natasha.”
What wasn’t to like? She was beautiful and deadly, and one of the world’s greatest spies - it was no small pedigree (and he obviously had a thing for spies, deadly ones). “After Tony and Pepper’s wedding, we sort of - “ He cleared his throat, this was awkward. “Had a moment.”
Granted, it took longer than a moment. But it had been fun, and then T’Challa never spoke of it. Didn’t bring it up. What was he supposed to say?? He froze, again, yet in a much different manner this time.
That was a surprise to hear and Sam wondered if Steve knew, given his penchant for wanting to hook up his friends. He hadn’t shared about his date with Carol yet, mostly because they already had to deal with Fury interfering and they didn’t need Steve involved too. Maybe he could distract the Captain with Natasha and T’Challa.
“What kind of moment?” Sam asked. “The fact that you’re alive to talk about it is a good sign.”
Natasha was pretty amazing, though Sam never considered her that way.
“An intimate moment.” He was too polite to use crass terms, but Sam could probably figure out the nuances on his own. T’Challa hadn’t told anyone about that, actually - mostly because, again, who would he tell? But it also wasn’t really anyone else’s business.
However, he knew Sam would not run out and announce it to the whole neighborhood. Surely he had some discretion. “I never once feared for my life,” he smiled crookedly, scratching his cheek. She hadn’t killed him then but she probably would if she learned he was blabbing that business to people. “It is just that I don’t really talk about these sorts of things anyway. I also don’t really know what to do next, if anything.”
Pretend it never happened? Just let it vanish? Be awkward for the rest of his life?
“Anyway - “ He took a big bite of his burger, swallowing again before speaking. “About, ah. About Oakland...”
Sam wasn’t going to pry any more than that. He’d thought maybe they shared a kiss and that was impressive enough. More than that, he most certainly did not need to know. “Please tell me you at least called her,” he said. That’s all he was going to say about that.
“Oakland, yeah, what’s up?” he asked. He was enjoying the work he’d done so far for the Wakandan outreach centers and looked forward to doing more.
T’Challa looked abashed. “I haven’t,” his shoulders slumped a little. “At least not...for something personal. Should I?” He would take advice, he didn’t care. Even Kings needed to hear outside perspectives sometimes - he wasn’t arrogant enough to think he knew everything about romance or life.
But, right, yes. “Well, I was going to see which you would rather do,” he continued on, wiping his hands with a napkin (because the burgers had just the right amount of grease and melty cheese). “In Oakland, we are about to launch a school nutrition program. Healthy breakfasts and lunches for children, working with urban farms. Besides that, the center in Brazil is about to open as well - if you would prefer to be there when it gets up and running? The city, Salvador, is a large pot of Afro-Brazilian culture.” Honestly, Sam would be good with either - he also did not necessarily have to speak Portuguese, as a bonus. English was spoken in the city too, and besides, the Wakandan translators were very helpful for diplomatic work.
“Yes, you definitely should,” Sam encouraged. He might not be the best guy to take relationship advice from, but he was pretty sure that calling was never a bad idea.
He took a moment to take a bite of his burger while T’Challa explained his options. They both sounded pretty good. “Brazil actually sounds pretty interesting,” he said after he chewed and swallowed the bite. This place was good and he was going to have to make a mental note to suggest it next time he and Carol went out for burgers.
“How long would I need to be there?” Oakland was nice, but he wasn’t really the farmer type, so he figured he could be more useful in Brazil.
Hm, alright. T’Challa made a note of that - and he would definitely call Natasha as soon as possible. Or send her a message, at least. He still felt awful that she had somehow rationalized killing herself for the soul stone after Hawkeye took a gap five years to be a murderer. And it was her who kept the team and her family, what remained of it, together.
“A week would be sufficient, I think,” he said, after another swallow of beer. “If it needs to be more we can work it out - with the jets we have, traveling there and back is a very quick affair. You have been doing a lot of good work, by the way,” he added. “I very much appreciate it.”
A week didn’t sound bad. And if there was some kind of emergency elsewhere that required his assistance, he could get back easily enough. “Worst case, we can always get Strange to do his swirly light thing,” Sam said.
The doctor thought he was crazy when he insisted that he open the portal on Steve’s left in the second battle against Thanos, but it was totally worth it.
He appreciated the compliment. “Thanks,” he said. “I’ve been enjoying it.” It was as satisfying as the work he’d done with veterans before Steve and Nat knocked on his door.
T’Challa’s lips quirked up in a half smile, one of carefree amusement even reflected there in dark eyes. “Swirly light thing,” he repeated. “Yes, that is acceptable.”
Good, there was a plan, then. He felt much better about having someone else there for the Salvador center’s opening - there would be representatives from Wakanda, of course, but Sam could provide another perspective as he had been doing in Oakland as well. Plus, as a fellow person of color he seemed to resonate with the target crowd there - the young ones, who didn’t really have many positive role models to look up to.
“And I will get this,” he insisted, swiping the check when it was dropped off. “Out of thanks for your outreach center efforts and in celebration of you potentially wooing someone very nice.”
Aw. He’d tease a little, but overall he was happy for Sam and hoped things worked out for him. They could all use that, here in their pocket of the universe.
Sam laughed, but didn’t argue with T’Challa picking up the check. “You make that phone call and it’ll be my treat when we go on a double date.”
With as fast as the two of them moved, that might happen a year from now.
“Thanks for thinking of me for the job,” he said. “It’s been great. Let me know when I need to leave for Brazil so I can pack.”
Goddesses, a double date. That sounded about as foreign as any other western weirdness that T’Challa had encountered but, really, he was not opposed to the idea.
“I...suppose I will hold you to that?” he chuckled, stuffing enough cash into the billfold and making sure to leave a nice tip. He always did. “And yes, look for my message about Brazil very soon. I anticipate things will keep rolling, which is exactly what I prefer.” They’d been briefly slowed by the potential reemergence of HYDRA goons but with that out of the way now, they were all free to do other things.
And face whatever came next.