A/N just having a bit of fun!
"It's turn, step, kick, kick—kick high, Pegs. You're dancing, not taking out someone's kneecap."
"Unfortunately, I have far more experience with the latter," Peggy grumbles, falling out of pose in order to catch her breath. Angie clears her throat pointedly, and Peggy quickly retakes her starting position. "Sorry. Do go on."
"Let's take it again from the top. Smile, and—step one, pivot, good…"
One week ago, Thompson had called all of the agents together and revealed their new highest priority: Joe Carmine, a businessman whose shady dealings put him in contact with foreign agents the SSR's been trying to pin for months.
The good news: Carmine's birthday was approaching, and he was infamous for throwing massive blowouts at his penthouse—complete with dancing girls, caterers, and loads upon loads of guests. A dream job, in the spy world. Any number of opportunities to get into the party, sneak into his private office, and make off with his files.
The bad news: Carmine is just as paranoid as he is crooked, and every single person on his staff was hand picked. Nobody got in or out of the party without Carmine's personal approval. "Normally we could falsify some credentials, get ourselves in as bartenders or something, but he only takes the best of the best—and I dunno about you guys, but my drink mixing skills begin and end at putting rocks in my scotch. And believe me, he'll check."
Thompson had gotten a few laughs for his weak joke, but Peggy was busy analyzing the problem from all angles. "I assume he already has a security team in place?"
"He's worked with the same guys for years, yeah. No in there."
"We could send Stark," Sousa had suggested—a thought Peggy had considered and discarded halfway through Thompson's mission summary—and it had gone over about as well as expected.
"The guy we just wasted all our resources trying to arrest? No thank you."
They had batted ideas around for hours, ranging from the reasonable (remote surveillance, reliable but unlikely to yield anything groundbreaking) to the idiotic (seducing his sister to get on the guest list as a plus one). Finally they'd decided to call it a night, nowhere near a conclusion.
But when Peggy had described the problem to Angie over dinner, Angie hadn't batted an eyelash. "All ya gotta do is get an audition as one'a them chorus girls. Who wouldn't pick you, legs like yours?"
"There is the minor inconvenience of my not knowing how to dance."
"Pffft. I'll teach ya!"
Which has brought them here—in the drawing room of Howard's penthouse with all of the furniture pushed against the walls for the third day in a row, Peggy huffing and puffing her way through choreography Angie could do in her sleep. To Peggy's immense frustration, while she's covered in sweat Angie is pristine, the loose shirt she's been practicing in falling tantalizingly off one shoulder.
In moments like this, Peggy is sure that their attraction cannot possibly be mutual. Angie is… immaculate, when she dances. Clean lines, sharp movements, graceful from head to toe. Gorgeous.
Peggy's dancing, on the other hand, resembles nothing so much as the clumsy stumblings of a drunken cow.
"You wanna stop glaring at me like I'm some creep you gotta chase down for work?" Angie asks, breaking Peggy's concentration.
Peggy's frown only deepens as she continues dancing. "It's not you I'm glaring at."
"Maybe we should take five."
"I don't need a break, I can do this, I…" Peggy tries to twirl the way she's seen Angie do effortlessly a thousand times, slips, and crashes to the floor.
"Peggy!" Angie yelps, rushing to her side. "You okay? You bleedin'?"
She groans. "Nothing hurt but my pride, as they say," she mutters, though if she's being honest it didn't exactly feel nice to land on her knee like that.
"Well now we're definitely taking five," Angie says, easing herself down and taking a seat next to Peggy on the hardwood. "Maybe I shoulda started you on something easier."
"I don't need to be babied," Peggy insists, stung.
"I ain't trying to baby you, Peg, I'm trying to teach you. Everyone's gotta start somewhere. Or did they just send you inta Germany on your first day in the Army with your gun half-cocked and your boots on the wrong feet?"
Peggy scoffs. "Actually, you'd be surprised."
"That's a comforting thought."
"Quite," Peggy agrees, and the two smile at each other. Peggy sighs. "I don't mean to be so difficult. I'm just…"
"Used to being good at everything?" Angie ventures.
Peggy frowns. "I wasn't going to say that at all."
"But it's true. You're a heck of a dame, English, everyone knows it. You don't have to be perfect."
Try telling my coworkers that, Peggy thinks before shaking her head. "But for this assignment, I must be. If Carmine doesn't select me then we're back to square one. So yes, I have to be perfect. I've got to dance like you."
Peggy doesn't even realize what she's said until the tips of Angie's ears go red. "You're just sayin' that."
"I've been accused of being many things, but an idle flatterer isn't among them. You…" What she means to say is You're a beautiful dancer. What she says, however, is, "You're beautiful when you dance."
Angie stares at the floor. "Thanks, English," she mumbles.
It's the first time Peggy's ever seen Angie at a loss for words. And really, now that she's taking the time to stop and really look at Angie—the flush in her cheeks, the uncertain turn of her mouth, how she's refusing to meet Peggy's eyes—she can't help but hope. Maybe… maybe there's a chance this is mutual after all.
She'll never know unless she asks.
"Of course," Peggy adds then, clearing her throat, "While I'm not an idle flatterer, I could be accused of being biased. After all, I think you're beautiful all the time."
Angie blinks twice before she looks up, baffled. "Huh?"
"I heard what you said." Peggy can't interpret Angie's tone; it's one she's never heard before. "What're you gettin' at, Pegs?"
Now it's Peggy's turn to blush. "I… surely it's obvious by now, the way I feel for you."
"Spell it out for me," Angie requests, dumbfounded.
But Peggy's always been more of a doer than a talker, so instead she reaches out with shaking fingers to tilt Angie's chin, pausing for any kind of sign. Angie swallows hard, eyes open like she's afraid this will all disappear if she closes them, and nods imperceptibly. It's all the signal Peggy needs—she tilts forward until their noses touch, nuzzles Angie the slightest bit in reassurance, and finally connects their lips.
She can't hear a thing over the pounding of her own heart. Hesitantly, and then with more confidence, Angie starts to kiss back, the two of them finding a gentle, tentative rhythm together. It feels like they're the only two people for miles and miles; like for once, they have all the time in the world.
"Wait, stop," Angie gasps. Peggy springs away, terrified that she's ruined everything until Angie clarifies, "We're supposed to be working."
Soothed, Peggy leans back in. "Like you said: we can take five minutes."
"But your audition—"
"Oh, hang the audition," Peggy says, and moves in for another kiss.