Series Notes: I’ve collected all my Steve/Diana stories that take place early in their relationship under the title The Princess And The Pilot. The entire series can be found here.
Genres: Angst, Drama
Warnings: Mentions of rape
Summary: Steve and Diana experience their first serious argument.
Date Of Completion: January 4, 2014
Date Of Posting: August 23, 2014
Disclaimer: I don’t own ‘em, DC does, more’s the pity.
Word Count: 1237
Feedback welcome and appreciated.
Can we see
Diana watched as Steve walked into the kitchen of his house, clutching his cap with a white-knuckled grip. She stood hesitantly by the door, morning sunlight glinting off her tiara.
Steve turned around and said, “You embarrassed me today.”
Genuinely surprised, Diana asked, “How, my darling?”
It was Steve’s turn to be surprised. “By picking me up, of course.”
“Oh, that.” Diana waved her hand dismissively. “I wanted to kiss you. It is a custom among my people to exuberantly express love in this manner.”
“That’s all well and good, Angel, but picking me up in your arms in front of everyone on the base…that’s pretty embarrassing!”
“But why? I told you, I was expressing my love.”
Steve fiddled with his cap, turning it around-and-around. He seemed unsure of what to say.
A new thought dawned in Diana’s mind. Her eyes narrowed. “You mean because I am a woman, it is not appropriate for me to pick you up?”
He lifted his chin. “Most women can’t pick me up.”
“But I am an Amazon.”
“I know that.” Irritation laced his voice.
Diana crossed her arms. “But you find it emasculating for me to pick you up.” Her blood pounded in her veins.
“I thought you were different, Steve.” Disappointment welled up in her. “We were going to be different.”
“We are different. You know I love your strength and everything about you.”
“Except when it embarrasses you.”
Steve slammed his cap on the kitchen counter. “You know that’s not true!”
“Do I?” Diana’s blue eyes flashed fire. “You are like all the rest. You say you want equality for women but when it bruises your male ego, suddenly you change your mind.”
It was Steve’s turn for blue sparks to fly. “I just don’t want to be picked up in front of a crowd of people like a baby unless you’re rescuing me!”
“So you only want my strength exhibited when it benefits you.” She deliberately used a cool tone.
“Stop twisting my words! I’ve never objected to you carrying me when the situation calls for it.” He paced back-and-forth.
“We are supposed to be showing your people how a man and woman can interact with each other without the sexism that is blatant.”
She held up her hand. “Do not attempt to placate me.” She turned and left the house.
She was fortunate that the people of the neighborhood were accustomed to seeing her so that they left her alone as she walked. Her anger propelled her as she strode purposefully.
Masculine ego is truly amazing. Mother warned me.
Diana watched as a bluebird swooped overhead. A simple act of Nature, unlike the complex thing called ‘civilization’.
Truly, I thought Steve understood. He seemed unruffled by my superior strength and powers. Most men would not be so accepting.
Her boots pounded the pavement. Her Golden Lasso glittered on her hip as she glared at a chattering squirrel up in a tree.
We are supposed to be different. We will teach these people that women are not to be treated like chattel.
She had been horrified at some countries’ treatment of women, not allowing them an education, blaming them for being victims of rape, and so many other things that boggled her mind.
Lately she had been feeling off-balance, trying not to be depressed about the appalling treatment of women in this world beyond Paradise Island’s shores. Even in an enlightened society like America, women were still second-class, laboring at the same jobs but making less money than men for the very same work. Girls were still given subtle messages that boys were more prized, and it was still a pejorative for a boy ‘to be girly’. ‘Chick flicks’, movies aimed at women, were derided, and males dominated entertainment in all its forms except for the curious programming known as ‘soap operas’. Health and reproduction issues were of two standards for men and women. Women were still blamed for causing their own assaults, accused of ‘dressing provocatively’. Her Amazon sisters would be considered ‘provocative’ by their manner of dress.
I would like to see some man accuse Artemis of such a thing.
Her grim smile turned sad. Where was her optimism? She had been so eager to show the people of Man’s World the Amazon Way. How had she lost her way so quickly?
Did the level of oppression shock me?
If she was honest with herself, that was probably part of it. She was beginning to understand better why her fellow Amazons prized their seclusion so much.
This time a robin flew in front of her, chirping gaily. She had to smile at his antics as he flew around her head. “You remind me of a sparkling Little Bird,” she said in amusement. The robin chirped at her and flapped his wings. She laughed as the robin put on a show, very much like his human namesake.
He is a charmer. Well, I suppose that proves there are good examples of the male gender in this world.
The robin flew away and Diana stopped, her anger fading. She thought of the scene on the base that had aroused Steve’s ire. She remembered feeling very playful, and lifting him up had been easy for her. She had swept him up into the traditional bridal carry and kissed him soundly. At the time she had not noticed him stiffen. He had not pulled away but he had not returned her kiss with his usual ardor.
I am a diplomat as well as a Warrior. I should understand about different cultures.
She turned and started walking back toward the house.
Diana opened the kitchen door. She saw Steve sitting on the living room couch, head in hands. His uniform jacket was off and his sleeves rolled up. When he heard the door open, he lifted his head and immediately stood up.
She held up a hand as she approached him. “Let me speak first, Steve.”
“I just wanted to say I’m sorry.”
“I must apologize as well.”
Steve ran a hand through his hair. “I shouldn’t have gotten angry. You’re still new to this world.”
“And I should have realized it was unseemly to pick you up in that situation.” Diana stepped forward. “The balance we must try to achieve will be precarious. Trying to balance our two cultures while also trying to balance what our relationship is.” She smiled ruefully. “Should we defer to your culture? That could be sexist. Should we defer to mine? That could put you in an awkward position like today. Either way, we are traversing uncharted territory. It has been a long time since an Amazon has been in a relationship with a man.”
Steve’s smile was just as rueful as he took Diana’s outstretched hands. They came together and he ran his fingers through her dark hair.
“Our first fight,” he said regretfully. They touched foreheads as they held tightly to each other.
“Ah, yes, but the making up should be special.”
Diana slipped out of Steve’s grasp and walked toward the bedroom looking over her shoulder with a seductive smile. Steve breathed a sigh of relief. With a sparkling smile of his own, he followed her.