Anna woke up as they approached the Compound. She yawned, wiping the sleep from her eyes. "Are we here?"
Bucky nodded. "Yeah, we're here. Do you need help or can you walk?"
"I'd like to try to walk if that's okay."
Bucky nodded his head again. "Just don't try and push yourself too much, okay?"
Anna slowly stood up, biting back a wince as a jolt of pain shot up her side. She began to walk forward, leaning against the wall for support.
"Are you sure that you don't want me to carry you?" Bucky asked her, his blue eyes filled with concern as he watched her walk, he didn't want her to fall or anything.
"I'm fine." The pain had increased, but Anna didn't want to feel like she was completely helpless. She walked a few more steps before stopping, the pain now showing on her pale face. Without another word, Bucky walked over to her, lifting her into his arms once more.
"I could get used to this." Bucky said flirtatiously, and Anna flushed a bit, stammering out a response. Bucky chuckled softly before carrying her out of the jet. A dark haired man was waiting with a stretcher, and Anna realized that this must have been the Bruce that the red head had been talking about.
"I'm Dr. Banner." Bruce's tone was warm and friendly as Bucky laid Anna on the stretcher. "We're going to take care of you, alright? And nothing is going to be done to you without your permission."
Anna nodded, and she grabbed Bucky's hand as he tried to walk away so that Bruce could bring Anna inside. "Don't leave me." She whispered. She was someplace unknown, and Bucky was the only familiar thing about the place. "Please."
"I'm not going to go anywhere." Bucky assured her. "I'll be right here by your side the whole time, don't worry."
Bruce wheeled Anna inside, and she stared in awe. Everything seemed to be so technologically advanced. It was so much more...warmer than the HYDRA compound had been, so much more friendly. The whole place had a welcoming aura to it, and Anna visibly relaxed.
A blonde man was waiting inside for them. "This is the girl?"
Bruce nodded. "Yeah, this is Anna. Anna, this is Clint."
Anna gave him a small wave of her hand, and he smiled softly at her. "I'll let Tony know that she's here, tell him that our informer's information was correct. It was nice to meet you Anna, you're safe here now."
Anna knew that she would be safe here. Even though she barely knew these people, she knew that this was going to be so much better than her time in HYDRA, these people were different. They didn't care about how they could use her, all that they cared about was getting her on the mend.
"If you need anything at all, don't hesitate to ask." Bruce told her. "Anything that you want, we can get it for you. After I check you over, we'll get some food in you." Bruce could tell that she was severely underweight, which meant that she would be eating food that had a lot of protein, so that she could gain all of that weight back. They would probably wind up giving her nutrient supplements as well.
They reached the infirmary part of the building, and Bucky lifted Anna from the stretcher onto a hospital bed.
"We're going to start with some x-rays." Bruce told her. "See if there's any broken bones."
Anna had one broken rib, and Bruce set it for her, trying to be as gentle as he could with her. She also had a bad case of influenza. Everything was fine until Bruce brought out the needle. Anna's eyes widened, and she felt her breath hitch in her throat. "No!" She cried out, trying to get out of the bed.
Bucky grabbed her gently by the arms, trying to keep her calm. "Anna, it's alright, this is going to help you, it's going to help battle the flu that's in your body."
"No, let me go! Get that away from me!" Visions of scientists with long needles, injecting serums that hurt like hell into her bloodstream flooded Anna's mind, and now it wasn't Bucky and Bruce that she saw, but two HYDRA scientists. "No, please!" She thrashed around, making it difficult for Bruce to do what he needed to get done.
"We're going to have to sedate her." Bruce grabbed another needle. "Bucky, hold her as still as you can."
Bucky's grip tightened slightly, and Bruce stuck the needle into her vein. Anna thrashed around for another minute or two before going limp, her eyes rolling back before closing completely.
Bucky sighed as he released the now unconscious girl. Whatever HYDRA had done to her, it had been bad. If it was anything like what he had been put through, then it was a miracle that she was still alive.
Bruce hooked an IV up to Anna, injecting the antibiotics that would help fight the influenza into it; she was also severely dehydrated, and the IV drip would hopefully help with that. "Once she wakes up, I'm going to have someone bring down a bowl of broth, she probably hasn't had anything all that sustainable in a while, she won't be able to keep foods that are too rich down yet."
Bucky nodded, tucking a stray strand of hair behind Anna's ear. She looked so innocent and peaceful when she was asleep, like she was years younger.
Bucky had never felt like this about anyone, had never felt this protective over anyone except for maybe Steve. It was like something had clicked, like she had been the missing piece in his life. Was this what they meant by love at first sight? Bucky didn't want to scare her off, so he wasn't going to talk to her about any of this just yet. Maybe someday, when she trusted him more. But for now, he could settle for being her friend and protector, the light in her seemingly endless darkness.