Duty [DW notice | tumblr notice]
8300 words | PG-ish | Clint Barton, Natasha Romanova, et al.
summary: The cost of keeping faith and keeping promises.
If they deserved it, then fine. Hill had been right – he’d sleep fine if these were two assholes with only evil in their hearts. But he didn’t want to terminate two kids – and they were kids – because some junior agent hadn’t worked hard enough to sway two idealistic idiots off of the path toward destruction. It was the hardest part of what he did, taking a kill order on faith. It happened more with SHIELD than it had back in the Army, where most of the time he or his unit had been a target of his target before he’d gotten to turn the tables. But SHIELD had a different mission and a different method and the first time Clint saw most of his targets was through the scope of his rifle when it was time to take the shot. Coulson had always given him details, more than needed to do the job, because he’d understood what he was asking Clint to do and what kind of cost it came with. His handlers since had tended to be younger, hadn’t come from either the armed services or SHIELD’s field division, and Clint had occasionally felt like they thought that they were playing a video game for all that they understood about the price of taking a life. And that in turn had made him feel like the weapon instead of the one wielding it, which made it easier to pull the trigger, but harder to keep the faith in the mission and with himself. The Hawkeye who ran on full automatic wasn’t someone he especially wanted to be around.Freezer Burn the series | Freezer Burn the story (not required for comprehension)