Yayyyyy, more Captain America fanfic!!! 😀
So, this is sort of a prequel/sequel to “Transcription”. It’s a prequel because it actually takes place before the end of “The First Avenger” (unlike “Transcription”, which probably takes place at some time before/during/after “The Avengers”). It’s a sequel because it’s sort of a variation on the same thing. Sort of. Maybe.
Anyway, enjoy! 😀
“We have left humanity behind.” Those words haunt Steve, burning like acid in the back of his mind. And sometimes, when he can’t sleep, he tries to find the logical slip, the loophole that would silence doubt.
For the longest time, there was nothing.
Red Skull is a monster. He has no compassion for any living thing. Every time Steve walks through the rubble of a destroyed town, he is faced with this fact yet again. In this war, things are black and white. The men who die at his hands chose to die in that way. They may not want to die, but it’s their choice, all the same. They’ve allied themselves with the bad guys, and he has to protect the innocent. Sure, he has seen horrible things, but he’s fighting against the people who perpetrated those atrocities.
There was one campaign where they were with a group of the “liberators”, and the other force burned down a village of “Nazi sympathizers”, mostly unarmed men, old people, women and children. Steve and Major Montgomery talked to Col. Phillips, and they left the other force the next day, forging off on their own to destroy another Hydra base.
The men who fight for Hydra wear masks. To the Roaring Commandos, those masks only represent something that strikes deeper to the heart. Those men have abandoned their identities in pursuit of a false god. They’ve abandoned anything that might have redeemed them.
Once, they had been marching through a (formerly) Nazi-occupied town, and a young woman had smiled up at them. The baby on her lap had gurgled with laughter and reached for Steve’s shield. A second later, the bullet from a sniper rifle had pinged off its edge. Bucky shot down the other sniper. They had saved the young woman—and the child—‘s lives. He hadn’t been able to understand the woman’s French, but it had been encouraging nonetheless.
It was those little moments that made the war worthwhile. It was the people who made it worthwhile.
And that, Steve realizes at last, is where Johann Schmidt went wrong.
Perhaps Johann Schmidt has left humanity behind. More specifically, his own.
Red Skull is a monster. But that’s because he has always been. Red Skull isn’t human. But that’s only what he brought to the table in the first place. He only has himself to blame.
Steve always has been, and always will be, human.
After all, he understands the value of compassion.
He and Johann Schmidt are as different as oak trees are from briars. Even if they’re given the same fertilizer, they still won’t become more similar. The serum only fuels what’s already there.
It’s what Steve has always had—though maybe no one could see it yet—that matters.