|For other uses, see Captain America (disambiguation)|
|For alternate versions of Steve Rogers, see Steve Rogers' Character Hub|
Captain Steven Grant "Steve" Rogers is a World War II veteran, a founding member of the Avengers, and Earth's first known superhero. Rogers grew up suffering from numerous health problems, and upon America's entry into World War II, he was rejected from serving in the United States Army despite several attempts to enlist. Rogers ultimately volunteered for Project Rebirth, where he was the only recipient of the Super Soldier Serum developed by Abraham Erskine under the Strategic Scientific Reserve. The serum greatly enhanced Rogers' physical abilities to superhuman levels. After Erskine's assassination and being doubted by SSR head director Chester Phillips, Rogers was relegated to performing in war bond campaigns, where he posed as a patriotic mascot under the moniker of Captain America.
In 1943, Rogers rejoined the SSR after single-handedly liberating Allied prisoners from a HYDRA base, after which he began leading his team of Howling Commandos in many operations against HYDRA. His World War II exploits made Rogers a living legend, and during this time he also formed a close relationship with SSR agent Peggy Carter. Rogers ultimately helped the Allies win the war and defeat HYDRA's leader Red Skull, but crashed into the Arctic during his final mission to stop a plane carrying bombs bound for the United States. Rogers then spent sixty-six years unconscious and frozen in ice under a state of suspended animation, before he was eventually found by S.H.I.E.L.D. in the early 21st century.
When he awoke, Rogers found himself alone in a modern world that he hardly recognized, with no idea what to do with his life. Following Loki's theft of the Tesseract from S.H.I.E.L.D., Nick Fury enlisted Rogers' help in retrieving the Tesseract and stopping Loki from destroying the world. Joining the Avengers, Rogers played a key role in the Battle of New York, successfully stopping the invasion, capturing Loki, and reacquiring the Tesseract.
Rogers then joined S.H.I.E.L.D. as a counter-terrorist operative. While uncovering a conspiracy inside the organization, he encountered the Winter Soldier, and discovered that HYDRA had infiltrated S.H.I.E.L.D. intending to use Project Insight as a way to bring about a despotic new world order. He then learned that Winter Soldier was his best friend Bucky Barnes, who he thought was killed in action during World War II, but had since been physically enhanced and brainwashed by HYDRA. Alongside Black Widow, Maria Hill and Falcon, Rogers then ended the HYDRA Uprising at the Battle at the Triskelion.
Rogers and the Avengers reassembled and embarked in an all-out war against HYDRA, recapturing the Scepter and capturing Baron Strucker. After Ultron, the new peacekeeping artificial intelligence program designed by Tony Stark and Bruce Banner, had went rogue, Rogers and the Avengers rallied to stop it from exterminating humanity. Ultron was ultimately defeated during the Battle of Sokovia, after which several of the original Avengers departed, leaving Rogers and Romanoff to lead and train the new Avengers team.
The new Avengers conducted several international missions, but failed to avert a catastrophic incident while on assignment to capture Crossbones in Nigeria. The United Nations used the disaster to ratify the Sokovia Accords, but Rogers saw their draconian nature and refused to sign, resulting in a rift between himself and Avengers co-leader Tony Stark. After the Accords ratification was bombed, with Bucky Barnes resurfacing as the primary suspect, Rogers and his anti-accord allies became fugitives of the law while assisting in his escape. Upon learning Helmut Zemo was the true mastermind, Rogers fought against Stark and his pro-accord allies before confronting Zemo in Siberia. When Zemo revealed Barnes' role in the Assassination of Howard and Maria Stark, Rogers came to Barnes' defense once an enraged Stark attacked him. They engaged in a fierce fight with Stark and emerged the victor, but with the Avengers deeply divided. Rogers eventually rescued some of his anti-accord associates from the Raft, and had Barnes sent to Wakanda to be cured of his brainwashing.
Rogers, Black Widow, Falcon, and Scarlet Witch continued to be fugitives from the law, but when Thanos and his Black Order attacked Earth seeking the final Infinity Stones, Rogers emerged from hiding in order to protect Vision. Rogers had Vision brought to Wakanda, and came to the country's defense when it was attacked by the Order an onslaught of Outriders. Captain America failed to stop Thanos from taking the Mind Stone and initiating the Snap, wherein half the universe's population was wiped. Rogers survived, and journeyed through space to Planet 0259-S, where the Avengers killed Thanos.
Five years after the Snap, Rogers and his fellow Avengers eventually found a way to safely travel through time, returning to various points in the past to amass all six Infinity Stones, making amends with Tony Stark in the process. The stones were used to initiate the Blip, and he resumed the mantle of Captain America once more to participate in the Battle of Earth, where he discovered he was deemed worthy of Mjølnir, wielding it in combat against Thanos and his army from an alternate timeline. After Stark sacrificed his life to wipe out Thanos and his armies, Rogers volunteered to return the stones to their respective timelines. He opted to return and remain in the 1940s, where he married Peggy Carter. Rogers grew old and reunited with his friends in the present, entrusting Sam Wilson with his mantle and shield. Rogers entered retirement, with his current whereabouts unknown to the general public.
Meeting James Barnes
Steve Rogers was born on July 4, 1918, to Sarah and Joseph Rogers in New York City. Before Rogers had been born, his father was confirmed to have been killed in action in World War I. Rogers lived with his mother in Hell's Kitchen. Rogers was playing with his toy soldiers when he was suddenly called by his mother, who was terminally ill due to the tuberculosis she contracted while in the hospital where she worked. Realizing the resemblance between Rogers and his father, Sarah guessed that his son would like to be a soldier just like his father, but that many people would say that he could not because he was in poor health. However, his mother reminded her son that although his body appeared fragile, he had a heart ten times his size and made him promise that whatever his dream, he would use his head to stay out of trouble. Rogers agreed, would remember in the years to come.
In Hell's Kitchen years later, Rogers became involved in a fight with a group of bullies, who demanded a fee for crossing Tenth Avenue. Despite his physical and numerical disadvantage, Rogers refused to pay, and the thugs began beating him until another boy arrived and began defending him because he was tired of seeing the thugs stealing money from small children like Rogers. Rogers helped his rescuer in battle by hitting one of the bullies with a circular trash can, and the bullies fled the alley. The boy was inspired to face the aggressors by following Rogers introduced himself as James Buchanan Barnes, although his friend called him "Bucky."
Barnes eventually became Rogers' best friend. Rogers suffered from asthma, scarlet fever, rheumatic fever, high blood pressure, and heart trouble, among other illnesses, and thus was frequently attacked by bullies on the streets. However, his resilience, despite his small stature, inspired Barnes to come to Rogers' aid and fight off the bullies when he was needed.
Rogers attended George Washington High School in Brooklyn from 1932 to 1936, and later Auburndale Art School, also in Brooklyn, from 1937 to 1938. During one of their trips together, Rogers and Barnes had ended up being forced to get a ride back to Brooklyn on the back of a freezer truck as they had used all their remaining train money to buy hotdogs, while Barnes had also inadvertently managed to spend $3.00 as he attempted to win a stuffed bear for Dolores. Another time when they were at Coney Island together, Barnes convinced Rogers to ride the Cyclone, resulting in Rogers throwing up.
In 1936, Rogers' mother died of tuberculosis and was buried next to her husband. Following the funeral, Rogers spoke to Bucky Barnes, who offered to have Rogers stay at his place and do errands to earn his keep. Rogers declined, insisting that he could get by on his own. Seeing him struggling to find his house keys, Barnes revealed his secret key and assured Rogers that he did not have to because Barnes was with him "to the end of the line."
A year later, during their art class, Barnes and Rogers found out that the United States of America had joined the World War II. He wanted to join the United States Army to go fight in Europe against the Nazis, so Barnes trained him for two weeks at Goldie's Boxing Gym. Soon, Barnes and Rogers went to a US Recruiting and Induction Center in New York City where Rogers was classified as 4F and rejected for service, but Barnes later enlisted.
Rejected for Service
Seeing the rise of Adolf Hitler and the horrors of World War II, Rogers became determined to enlist in the United States Army. While in New York City in 1943, Rogers made another attempt to be enlisted, using a false enlistment card which claimed he was from Paramus. While waiting to be called up, Rogers read a newspaper with another recruit who claimed seeing the horror that was happening in France made him reconsider signing up, to which Rogers insisted he had not changed his mind.
Upon getting to the desk, Rogers was asked about how his mother and father had died following the ending of World War I. Due to all his various health and physical issues, Rogers was rejected for service in the military, despite his multiple attempts at several enlistment offices. However, he had remained determined to fight alongside his friends and other soldiers in the war and would try to convince the doctors to at least give him a chance to fight, but to no avail.
Disappointed that he would still be unable to go overseas and join in the war effort, Rogers went to a local cinema to try and take his mind off the situation. While at the screening, Rogers watched as an advert was played showing the different ways soldiers and civilians can help with the war effort, showing footage of the rise of Nazi Germany and the efforts the United States of America and the other Allied Forces were putting in to stop Hitler's advancements. While the film showed soldiers signing up, Rogers considered the footage of all the efforts people at home could do if he was still unable to fight overseas.
When a loud jerk inside the cinema yelled at the screen and showed disrespect to the message of the film, Rogers told him to show some respect. When the bully continued yelling out and insisting that they stop showing the footage and finally play the movie, Rogers was the only person to stand up to the bully, telling him to shut up, only for the bully to stand up and reveal himself to be considerably bigger than Rogers and ready for a fight with whomever told him to shut up.
The bully proceeded to take Rogers outside before he then began to beat him up for telling him to shut up. Despite being smaller and unable to defend himself, Rogers still refused to give up, getting up from every punch and using a garbage can lid to defend himself and insisting he could do this all day, until he was finally knocked over and beaten. Rogers was then rescued by Bucky Barnes, who chased off the bully before helping Rogers to get on his feet.
Looking at his friend, Rogers then realized Barnes was wearing his uniform while he confirmed he would ship out with the 107th Infantry Regiment to go to England the next day. While Rogers expressed his disappointment that he would not join him, Barnes then smiled and insisted that they had to celebrate his last night before heading out into combat by going to the Stark Expo, which Rogers agreed to go to despite his poor mood, still wanting to support Barnes.
Stark Expo 1943
In his attempt to cheer up Rogers, Bucky Barnes convinced him to attend the Stark Expo and see an exhibition of the future technologies with him as well as two girls as a double date which Barnes had kept a secret from Rogers. Upon seeing Bonnie and Connie excitedly waving at Barnes, Rogers questioned what he had told his date about him, to which Barnes insisted he had only told her the good stuff, which had made Rogers even more nervous.
While they explored the Expo with the girls, Rogers and Barnes had then witnessed Howard Stark demonstrating his flying car prototype which would be built by Stark Industries, with Stark enthusiastically claiming that with his technology he and his company were currently developing, automobiles of the future would not even have to touch the ground at all. As the demonstration went underway, Rogers tried to offer Connie some sweets which she rejected before they watched as Stark's car then promptly crashed to the ground due to still being unfinished, much to the great amusement of the crowds.
Despite all of the incredible exhibits that were being displayed at the Expo, when Rogers had seen a nearby enlistment office adjacent, he had quietly snuck away from Barnes and the girls as he then made another attempt to go enlist in the United States Army once again so he might finally have a chance of fighting overseas with his fellow men. While waiting his turn to enlist in the Armed Forces, Rogers then posed beside their picture of a soldier who was wearing an army uniform, although Rogers' own short stature meant he rather apathetically only came up to the picture's chin while looking at himself.
Barnes noticed his absence and later found Rogers, attempting to convince him not to enlist again in case he was arrested for lying on his enlistment form again, but Rogers insisted that he needed to fight for his country as the threat of World War II and Nazi Germany still continued to grow. Finally, Rogers argued that he had no right to do any less than the other men fighting for their freedom before he and Barnes said their goodbyes, knowing that Barnes would be shipping out onto England with the 107th Infantry Regiment the next morning, with the pair sharing joking insults and a hug as Barnes left.
Meeting Abraham Erskine
Having overheard Rogers' conversation with Bucky Barnes about wanting to help in the war, Abraham Erskine decided to meet Rogers in a secluded room where Rogers was awaiting his tests. Seeing the doctors leave the room, however, Rogers became concerned that his forging of enlistment paperwork had been discovered as he quickly put his shoes back on and prepared to leave.
Erskine, however, then stepped inside the room and explained that he represented the Strategic Scientific Reserve. Rogers then questioned where Erskine was from, insisting he was not troubled when Erskine revealed he was born in Germany. Erskine then asked Rogers if he wished to go overseas and kill Nazis, to which Rogers questioned if he was being tested before saying that he did not wish to kill anyone; he simply did not like bullies no matter where they were from.
Impressed by this answer and all of Rogers' continued efforts to be enlisted with the United States Army, Erskine then decided to enlist Rogers as a candidate of Project Rebirth, telling him that this would be his chance to join the war effort in World War II, which Rogers had then enthusiastically accepted, delighted to be given the opportunity to serve.
- "We are going to win this war because we have the best... men. And because they’re gonna get better. Much better. The Strategic Scientific Reserve is an allied effort made up of the best minds in the free world. Our goal is to create the best army in history. But every army starts with one man."
- ―Chester Phillips to Steve Rogers[src]
Rogers agreed and under the supervision of Abraham Erskine, he traveled to Camp Lehigh to begin his training. Upon arriving, Rogers watched as Peggy Carter introduced herself and showed her strength by hitting Gilmore Hodge when he attempted to disrespect her. Chester Phillips then arrived and gave a speech to the cadets, taking an instant dislike for Rogers as he believed that such a small man should not be involved in their operations.
Rogers trained hard in his attempts to prove himself to be a worthy soldier with the United States Army, but struggled on much of the physical training, managing to get tangled in a rope climb and falling upside down. Rogers was also often mocked and bullied by the other soldiers, including Hodge who would kick out the structures behind him to ensure that the barbed wire fell on Rogers which he would be forced to crawl through in all of the mud.
However, Rogers' determination and quick thinking often made him stand out from the group, even when he was still struggling to keep up with the other soldiers physically. While out on their run under the orders of Michael Duffy, Rogers and the other cadets were offered a ride home if they successfully took down a flag from the top of a pole, with Rogers being too tired to join the others in desperately trying to climb up the pole physically to take down the flag.
Rogers, however, approached the situation more thoughtfully and, rather than attempting to climb up the flagpole, Rogers instead simply removed the pole's support pin, allowing it to fall down before removing the flag as it lay on the grass. With that, and being the first cadet in the camp's history to successfully take the flag, Rogers gained his ride to camp in Carter's Jeep, much to the annoyance of the other soldiers who had failed to think of it.
Despite all of Rogers' continued efforts to prove himself to be worthy, Phillips was unconvinced of Erskine's claims that Rogers was the right person for the Project Rebirth procedure, still ignoring Erskine's instance that they needed to look at qualities in a subject that went beyond the physical, although Phillips claimed that Hodge was the best fit due to him being big, fast and someone who obeyed orders and was therefore the perfect soldier for them.
As Erskine argued that Hodge was simply a bully, Phillips decided to demonstrate that Hodge was braver than Rogers by throwing a dummy training grenade at the cadets. Much to Phillips surprise, Hodge ran for his life while Rogers jumped over the grenade in order to protect his fellow soldiers from the blast that never came. Having seen Rogers commit an act of self-sacrificing bravery, Phillips finally relented to Erskine, much to his annoyance and Erskine's satisfaction.
Accepted for Rebirth
- "The serum amplifies everything that is inside. So, good becomes great. Bad becomes worse. This is why you were chosen. Because a strong man, who has known power all his life, will lose respect for that power. But a weak man knows the value of strength, and knows compassion."
- ―Abraham Erskine to Steve Rogers[src]
With the decision made that Rogers would be the one cadet selected to undergo Project Rebirth, Rogers was sent back into his room to await the procedure in the morning. The night before the treatment, Rogers was visited by Abraham Erskine who came with a drink, before Rogers asked him why he had been selected for the experiment as opposed to any of the other stronger potential soldiers.
Erskine explained how the Nazi Party and Adolf Hitler had gained all its power in Germany and how Erskine himself had been selected by Hitler to produce the perfect soldier. Erskine then revealed to Rogers that his first test subject, Johann Schmidt, underwent an imperfect version of the treatment, suffering negative side-effects due to his inner ambition for power and selfish obsession with becoming a superior man.
However, Erskine reassured Rogers that despite everything that had happened to Schmidt upon taking the Super Soldier Serum, he had chosen Rogers because he was inherently a good man and one that because he had been weak his whole life, would not lose respect for the strength he would gain. Erskine offered Rogers a drink before he took it away as Rogers still had his procedure the next morning and therefore could not consume any liquids, although Erskine himself still insisted that he could have a drink himself. Amused, Rogers and Erskine promised to share this drink after the treatment.
On the day of the procedure, Rogers was escorted to a secret facility by Peggy Carter. While they drove together, Rogers pointed out many of the locations in New York City where he was beaten up as he and Carter shared being picked on and ignored for something they could not change; Rogers for his size and Carter for her gender. Despite Rogers' awkwardness while speaking with her, Carter was charmed by his sincerity and good moral values.
Once they had arrived, Rogers followed Carter into the Facility where the Strategic Scientific Reserve members were awaiting their arrival in order to begin the procedure as was planned. Rogers then watched agent Carter as she greeted the elderly woman who was standing behind the shop desk, giving her their secret code which granted them access into the secret facility, which was being hidden behind a large bookcase to avoid suspicion from members of the general public.
As soon as they stepped inside the main room, Rogers witnessed all of the scientists turning and looking at him, awaiting the beginning of the experiment, before Abraham Erskine greeted Rogers and Carter while Howard Stark prepped the machinery. While Rogers was instructed to remove his clothes and prepare for the experiment, Chester Phillips was watching from a safe distance with many other various Generals and Senators.
Once Rogers was strapped into the Vita-Ray Chamber, Erskine gave a short speech to Phillips and all the other people watching about exactly how Project Rebirth would work and what their procedure entailed, promising this would be the first step towards bringing them to peace during World War II. Rogers was injected with a needle which made him wince, as he noted that the injection was not nearly as bad as he thought it was going to be, before Erskine then revealed that this injection had merely been penicillin, making Rogers slightly more nervous as he considered what could be coming up next.
Before subjecting Rogers to the super-soldier treatment, Erskine gave a countdown and then placed a comforting hand on Rogers' shoulder before injecting him with the Super Soldier Serum which had caused Rogers considerable pain. Erskine then ordered Stark to activate the machine which lifted Rogers up in the air. Before the final stages occurred, Erskine questioned how Rogers was doing, to which he simply joked if he still had time to go to the bathroom.
Erskine ordered Stark to proceed as they then began dosing Rogers with large amounts of Vita Radiation. Although the treatment was extremely painful, causing Rogers to scream out in agony and almost force Erskine and Stark to shut off the reactor to save his life, Rogers demanded that the scientists to keep going regardless of his pain. Eventually, the experiment was complete and Rogers finally emerged from their experiment with a greatly enhanced physique.
Rogers went from being 5'4" tall and weighing 95 pounds to being 6'2" and weighing 240 lbs, with the serum also curing his previous medical afflictions. Carter greeted Rogers as he stepped out of the Vita-Ray Chamber, asking how he felt, to which the awestruck Rogers could only comment that he felt taller. While Carter gave Rogers a t-shirt to cover himself up, all the other scientists and generals then came down to congratulate the team, with Stark expressing his amazement. Brandt then began commenting on how Adolf Hitler and the Nazi Party were about to get very nervous following this extraordinary success as more of the scientists and generals had then gathered around Rogers.
Shortly following the Project Rebirth experiment, however, Heinz Kruger, who infiltrated the facility, shot and killed Abraham Erskine. As Kruger fought through the soldiers in his way, he then stole the last vial of Super Soldier Serum and escaped. Rogers ran to Erskine's aid, but there was nothing he could do. Erskine pointed to Rogers' heart, reminding him of their earlier conversation, and died.
Determined to bring Kruger to justice, Rogers then pursued him on foot, saving Peggy Carter when she was almost run over by Kruger. While Kruger drove away in a stolen taxi, Rogers ran after him through the streets of New York City and, due to his enhanced physicality, Rogers was able to catch up with Kruger, despite still struggling to handle all of his newly found abilities and inadvertently crashing through a shop window which Rogers apologized for.
Finally, Rogers leaped from car roofs and launched himself onto the roof of Kruger's Lucky Star Taxi and tried to pull him out while they continued charging through the city. However, Kruger began firing into the roof of the taxi, mildly wounding Rogers who managed to avoid most of the gunshots before Kruger took his eyes off the road to get yet another shot at Rogers and caused the taxi to crash, while Rogers was thrown off but came out of the wreck uninjured.
Getting back onto his feet, Rogers continued running after Kruger, only to be shot at, forcing Rogers to pick up the Taxi's broken car door which he used to defend himself. As the crowds attempted to run for their lives, Kruger then grabbed a child from the street, taking him to the docks with the gun to his head while still firing at Rogers. Unwilling to allow the boy to come to harm, Rogers continued after Kruger while the boy's mother still cried out in utter horror.
When Rogers caught up with Kruger on the docks, he witnessed the assassin holding his Walther P38 at the boy's head, forcing Rogers to step out to try and stop Kruger from harming the boy. Kruger responded by trying to shoot Rogers, only to realize that he was out of ammunition. Frustrated, Kruger threw the boy over the docks and ran, but when Rogers went to save the boy, he discovered the boy could swim and continued chasing after Kruger.
When Kruger made his final desperate effort to escape by getting in the submarine, Rogers still refused to allow him to escape justice and dove into the water after Kruger. Swimming through the water with all of his newfound might, Rogers managed to catch up with the submarine and punched through the glass of the cockpit, forcing Kruger outside and dragging him all the way back to the surface for interrogation.
Rogers dragged Kruger back to the surface and threw him onto the docks where he proceeded to smash the serum in ensure that the Strategic Scientific Reserve could not use it again. Rogers then demanded to know who he was while Kruger insisted he was merely the first of many, giving the HYDRA salute before he then committed suicide via Cyanide Pill before he could be interrogated any further, dropping dead in front of Rogers.
Recruited by Brandt
With Abraham Erskine now deceased, any hope of reproducing the Super Soldier Serum was seemingly lost. Blood samples were taken from Rogers in hopes to replicate the formula. Out of the twelve, one was given to Howard Stark. Rogers then spoke with Peggy Carter who insisted that if the experiment could have only worked once, Erskine would have been glad it worked on Rogers. During the further testing, Rogers pushed a bulldozer to test his strength, it was easily the fastest time.
Finding Stark still working on the Fieser Dorsch, Rogers heard that whatever HYDRA was now working with was more technologically advanced than anything they had. Rather than be confined to a lab while scientists attempted to rediscover Erskine's formula, Rogers tried to convince Chester Phillips to allow him to serve overseas and defeat Johann Schmidt, but Phillips refused, noting that he was not the army he had wanted, claiming Rogers was just not enough.
While Rogers was left gutted that once again he would not be able to serve in World War II as he had wanted, Brandt, however, approached Rogers and claimed that his actions in stopping Heinz Kruger and saving the young child had been noticed by the public. Brandt then offered Rogers the chance to serve his country on the most important battlefield of the war, which Rogers had gladly accepted, with Brandt then promoting him there on the spot.
Performing for the USO
However, rather than putting Abraham Erskine's work to its intended use and being sent to serve overseas as he expected, Brandt had ordered Rogers to go and tour the nation in a colorful costume as Captain America. Rogers agreed, tasked to promote war bonds for the Treasury Department and encourage American participation in the war effort.
Rogers found performing difficult and awkward, still wishing to fight with his fellow soldiers against the forces of Nazi Germany and the continuing rise of HYDRA under the leadership of Johann Schmidt. But instead, he was forced by Brandt to perform and pose for photographs to keep the morale of the people back home on the rise. Despite his awkwardness, Rogers still tried to make the best of the situation, enjoying the reactions of all the young children.
With the help of this large show featuring music and dancers, even including a fake Adolf Hitler for Rogers to knock out night after night, Captain America became a star across the country, much to the ever-growing delight of Brandt who insisted on posing for some pictures with Rogers himself. Following each show, Rogers would sign autographs for the children who admired him, and following one show he was greeted by a beautiful woman wanting an autograph from him, which made the still shy Rogers rather awkward.
The continued shows allowed Rogers to become an icon for the American people during the war, even starring in his own comic book series and several movie serials in which he would heroically battle against and defeat the Nazis while still wearing Captain America's Uniform. These comic books were sent overseas to France where they were enjoyed by both the United States Army soldiers as well as children back home.
Rogers continued to travel the country from state to state as his own popularity continued to grow with the wives and children whose husbands and fathers were fighting overseas against Hitler's forces. At the end of the shows, Captain America would demonstrate his strength from the Super Soldier Serum by lifting a motorcycle and three of the dancers above his head while the music finished, much to the amazement of his ever growing audiences. Rogers also lost his virginity to a woman at some point during the tour.
In 1943, while touring to active servicemen in Italy, Rogers learned the soldiers of the United States Army did not enjoy his act as much as the nine-year olds for whom he usually performed. Instead of getting behind his message, Rogers had abuse yelled out by Gilmore Hodge and other soldiers who insisted on seeing the Star Spangled Singers instead of Captain America himself.
Depressed at the job with Captain America's USO Show he had been given and wishing to be a soldier serving on the front lines, Rogers took a free moment to sketch himself as a performing monkey. He was then joined by Peggy Carter who tried to persuade him that he was meant for more than what he was doing, reminding him of the reasons why Abraham Erskine had selected him, commenting on how much Rogers sounded like Brandt when he attempted to defend his recent work. Rogers, however, noted that despite all his disappointments in his current work, at least he did not end up being experimented on to gain the Super Soldier Serum while in labs.
During their conversation about his work as Captain America, Rogers watched as even more wounded soldiers returned to the base and learned that the 107th Infantry Regiment had been seemingly completely wiped out during battle against HYDRA while they had been fighting in Azzano. Upon hearing this, Rogers realized this was Bucky Barnes' unit and desperately set out to learn if his closest friend had been killed or not during the conflict.
Running across the camp with Carter, Rogers then went immediately to Chester Phillips tent who teased Rogers over his Captain America character. Rogers begged Phillips to inform him if Barnes was alive or dead, with Phillips explaining they believed he was gone. Rogers demanded to know what rescue mission was taking place, but Phillips confirmed none was planned as it had been deemed far too dangerous and would risk the lives of even more soldiers.
Although Phillips seemingly confirmed Barnes as K.I.A., Rogers had refused to believe that Barnes was dead and stole weapons and some equipment, including his shield, in an attempt to drive to the HYDRA base and find him. Rogers asked if Carter meant what she said when she claimed to believe he was meant for more than children's shows, which she confirmed. Seeing his determination, Carter convinced Rogers to let her aid him.
Carter and Howard Stark assisted Rogers by flying him into Austria, thirty miles behind enemy lines. During the journey, Rogers had an awkward conversation with Carter when he mistakenly thought she had begun a relationship with Stark. Their plane was suddenly shot at by enemy guns, and Rogers had ordered Carter to turn the plane around once he was clear. She tried to tell him that he could not give her orders, but he claimed he could as he was a Captain.
Rogers then leaped from Howard Stark's plane and landed safely on the ground in Austria before immediately going out to complete his mission. Rogers snuck aboard a HYDRA truck, easily knocking out both of the guards inside before he then managed to successfully infiltrate the HYDRA Fortress run by Johann Schmidt. Once his truck pulled up, Rogers knocked out the guard who came to look in using his shield, managing to not raise the alarm as he proceeded to make his way through the facility while still desperately attempting to avoid detection to all costs.
Once there, Rogers knocked out the second HYDRA guard without raising the alarm before making his way through the facility to find the P.O.W.s locked away in there and bring them back to the safety of the allied camp. During his search through the facility, while trying not to be caught, Rogers had found a piece of Tesseract technology which he stole, hoping that Stark could analyze their technology in order to find the secret to HYDRA's increase of power.
Finally, Rogers located the cell and freed the captured soldiers, being questioned by Gabe Jones about who he was supposed to be, to which Rogers simply answered that he was Captain America, much to all of their considerable confusion. Once freed, Rogers then spoke with Dum Dum Dugan and James Montgomery Falsworth as well as the other prisoners about their plan, before all of the soldiers fought against their former HYDRA captors, allowing them to escape.
While Dugan and the other former soldiers kept HYDRA on the run as they ran out of the Austrian HYDRA Weapons Facility and towards the freedom of their allied camp, Rogers had then continued with his search of Bucky Barnes and, on the way, he spotted Arnim Zola as he was just leaving a room in a desperate hurry and had taken with him all of his various plans and blueprints and prepared to escape before he could then be captured. When Rogers entered the room which Zola had just exited in such a hurry, he found Barnes strapped to a table having seemingly been experimented on.
Rogers freed Barnes from his restraints, finding Barnes was dazed and briefly confused as to why his best friend had become so much taller. Before they tried to escape, Rogers took note of a map of Europe in Zola's office citing eventual targets for HYDRA. While they ran through the facility, Rogers was asked what happened to him and rather than explain Project Rebirth and all the effects of that, he simply claimed he had just joined the army.
Showdown with Red Skull
However, as they were still attempting to make their way towards the exit, the entire facility began to explode so they tried to find another way out. As they made their way upstairs away from all of the flames, Rogers was then confronted by Johann Schmidt who was attempting to escape with Arnim Zola. While Schmidt expressed his delight at meeting Captain America, claiming he was a great fan of his films, Schmidt noted that while Abraham Erskine had clearly succeeded in his plans with Project Rebirth, with Schmidt claiming that while he thought Rogers was impressive he was hardly an improvement.
Wishing to shut him up and take him into custody, Rogers punched Schmidt in the face, only to notice he that his punch had damaged Schmidt's prosthetic mask. Schmidt then responded by angrily punching at his shield, causing a large dent due to his enhanced strength. They had a brief fight where Schmidt showed off his incredible strength by knocking Rogers to the ground before Rogers was able to kick him across the platform.
Zola separated the pair by retracting the bridge, as Schmidt revealed his face to be a mask, removing it to display the red-colored, skull-like face. While Rogers looked on, Bucky Barnes nervously questioned if Rogers had that same face. Schmidt then claimed that he and Rogers had both left humanity behind, before turning and making his escape in his Focke-Wulf Triebflügel, while Rogers and Barnes were left to die.
With little time to spare before the entire facility was consumed in flames, Rogers managed to get himself and Barnes upstairs where he found the only exit to the other side was a steel beam on the top floor. Rogers allowed Barnes to go first, only for the beam to become loosened by the weight as Barnes barely managed to get to the other side before the beam fell into the flames several floors below them, leaving Rogers with seemingly no exit remaining for himself.
Believing there was no hope left for him, Rogers ordered Barnes to escape without him, only for Barnes to insist that he would not leave without Rogers. Running out of time, Rogers used his Super Soldier Serum enhanced strength to move a steel bar out of his way, before making a desperate leap across the platforms. Despite almost being consumed by a fireball, Rogers had succeeded and regrouped with Barnes. As they made their way back, Rogers realized his radio had been damaged so he could not inform Peggy Carter of their survival and journey back, forcing them to make their journey on foot.
Return to Camp
Before long, Rogers had reunited with all of the escaped Prisoners of War, learning Dum Dum Dugan and Gabe Jones had successfully stolen a HYDRA Mini Tank during the conflict, and together, they had their way back towards the United States Army camp. While they were being greeted upon arrival, Rogers then asked Chester Phillips to give the men medical attention and then to reprimand him for his actions. However, Phillips refused to punish Rogers for disobeying his direct orders, knowing he had saved the lives of over 400 captured soldiers.
Rogers was then greeted by Peggy Carter asked him why he arrived late and Rogers explained that he could not call his ride as the radio she gave him had been broken. Bucky Barnes then called for all the people to acknowledge that Captain America was a hero and every soldier cheered and applauded for the man who had saved the prisoners from the clutches of HYDRA and the Red Skull. News of Captain America's rescue was soon published in papers across the world.
Recruiting the Commandos
Rogers traveled to England where he briefed Peggy Carter on what he had learned during his raid on the HYDRA Facility, including the locations of other HYDRA bases across Europe which he had seen on Arnim Zola's map. When Howard Stark then entered the base, he questioned why Rogers was not collecting his medal from Brandt, which he had just decided to skip, leading to Chester Phillips complimenting Rogers for it. As it was suggested that Rogers would need a team to go back onto the front lines of World War II, Rogers explained he was putting together a team himself.
Going into the Whip & Fiddle, Rogers met with some of the men he had saved from Red Skull and invited them into his team, nicknamed the Howling Commandos, to attack the other known bases belonging to HYDRA. While James Montgomery Falsworth claimed that the idea of reading back into the front lines sounded like good fun, Jim Morita also agreed while Gabe Jones and Jacques Dernier spoke to one another in French and agreed. Dum Dum Dugan finally informed Rogers that he would always be happy to fight, so long as Rogers agreed to open his tab at the bar so they could keep drinking, which Rogers agreed to, much to the soldiers' considerable delight.
While the other men celebrated their recruitment, Rogers then went to speak with Bucky Barnes asking if he was willing to follow Captain America into the fight against HYDRA, to which Barnes claims he would follow his friend from New York City who would never back down from any fight. Barnes then asked if Rogers was planning on keeping Captain America's Uniform when they went back onto the front lines as Rogers said the uniform was growing on him.
While they were speaking, they were then interrupted by the arrival of Carter, who had arrived in a form-fitting red dress which had made nearly the entire Whip & Fiddle go silent. Carter informed Rogers that Stark had some equipment he wanted Rogers to try in the morning. As Carter noticed the music, Barnes invited her to dance, only for Carter to ignore him and look at Rogers as she told him that once World War II was finally over, the pair should potentially go dancing together. When Carter had left, Barnes complained about being invisible to her, noting that he was only used to this happening to skinny Rogers, much to the great amusement of Rogers.
Howard Stark's Upgrades
The next morning, Rogers returned to the base in London where he was supposed to meet with Howard Stark. As he struggled to find where Stark currently was, Rogers asked Lorraine who informed Rogers that Stark was currently speaking with Chester Phillips. Lorraine then invited Rogers to sit and wait, before revealing that she had been reading all about the Liberation of Allied Prisoners of War and Rogers' involvement, despite Rogers still insisting that he was merely doing what needed to be done.
Lorraine, however, had insisted that Rogers had done far more for the efforts in World War II than most had, noting that the men who he had saved would have wives back at home who would likely wish to express their gratitude. As Rogers had still tried to insist that his efforts were not a big deal, Lorraine had still decided to reward his war efforts with her passionate kiss, claiming that it was on behalf of all the grateful women of America who wanted to thank him.
Rogers and Lorraine's kiss had been seen by Peggy Carter who had arrived to bring Rogers to meet with Stark. Although Rogers had still desperately tried to dismiss the situation, Carter proceeded to berate him by claiming that he had always wanted to join the United States Army and had ended up just like any other soldier. Rogers then answered this by questioning if she was into a relationship with Stark, as Carter noted that Rogers did not understand women.
Rogers later spoke to Stark for advice on the matter, which had resulted in Stark then jokingly claiming that there was almost no way to predict what a woman was thinking, which is why he had now concentrated on his work with Stark Industries. During their own talk about work, Stark provided Rogers with a new uniform and showed off new weapons for him to take into combat situations. Rogers, however, stopped at a new circular shield made of vibranium capable of negating large amounts of damage, which he then decided should become his primary weapon and defense during combat missions due to it being almost completely indestructible and vibration absorbent.
Rogers took an instant liking to the shield as he then enthusiastically showed it off to Carter, noting how this was almost indestructible as Carter had arrived to collect Rogers. The shield's strength was quickly proven when Carter shot at him multiple times as revenge for kissing another woman, noting when Rogers had been proved to be unharmed that it clearly worked well enough.
As Rogers and Stark watched the satisfied Carter leave the room as she had clearly proved her point to him following his attempt to kiss another woman, the shocked Rogers presented Stark with his own designs for the new version of his uniform, which Stark had accepted. Rogers' new version focused on both using the original concept of "Captain America" in a more practical setting as he went onto the front lines of the still continuing war effort.
- "That was a difficult winter. A blizzard had trapped half our battalion behind the German line. Steve... Captain Rogers, he fought his way through a HYDRA blockade that had pinned our allies down for months. He saved over a thousand men, including the man who would... who would become my husband as it turned out."
- ―Peggy Carter[src]
Finally, Rogers was sent to the front lines of World War II, now in command of the Howling Commandos. Rogers embarked on his quest to sabotage and destroy HYDRA facilities all across Europe. He led the team still using the name Captain America to inspire his fellow soldiers, now wearing a new and upgraded uniform with a similar design, but more practical for use. He also inspired civilians with his new look, inspiring them to attack a HYDRA member who held a kid hostage, after he stole SSR files.
With the Commandos, Rogers took the fight onto HYDRA, personally attacking HYDRA outposts and destroying them. Using his strength gained from Project Rebirth, Rogers was able to keep his men moving as they pushed their way through Europe to take back land that HYDRA took. Riding his Motorcycle, Rogers sabotaged HYDRA facilities and escaped as they exploded, satisfied with his work.
While World War II continued, Rogers and his Howling Commandos continued fighting against Nazi Germany, with Rogers becoming a more experienced military leader as a result. While Rogers was giving orders to Bucky Barnes and Dum Dum Dugan along with all of the rest of the Commandos, he realized the cameraman filming his work had taken footage of his compass, which contained a photograph of Peggy Carter, much to Rogers' embarrassment as he quickly made a move away from the camera crew filming him any more, knowing full well that Chester Phillips would likely be amused if he ever saw the footage showing Rogers' compass.
In winter of 1944, Rogers had single-handedly managed to stop a Nazi blockade and saved over six hundred men, including the man who had eventually become Peggy Carter's husband. Rogers then continued focusing on destroying HYDRA facilities, with Barnes now acting as the Commandos' sniper while he kept the unit safe as they explored the destroyed facilities to ensure their slow victory.
As the war moved in favor of the Allies, Rogers met with Dwight D. Eisenhower to discuss America's upcoming battle plans. He was also filmed sharing a laugh with Barnes, as well as storming a beach alongside his fellow United States Army soldiers. All of Rogers' actions during the war greatly enraged Johann Schmidt who found his schemes becoming constantly delayed by the actions of Rogers and his current team of the Howling Commandos standing by his side throughout their continued conflict against HYDRA.
While Rogers and his Howling Commandos had continued gaining victories, the Strategic Scientific Reserve had also managed to secure victories over HYDRA, allowing the Allies to slowly gain the advantage over Adolf Hitler as the war continued. As their missions continued, Rogers' leadership continued growing, allowing him to move beyond his persona as a propaganda hero and become a true leader in America's battle against the Nazis and HYDRA.
In one particular mission against HYDRA, following receiving some information on the location of one of HYDRA's top scientist Arnim Zola, Rogers and his Howling Commandos let about a plan to capture Zola, ridding Red Skull of one of his key allies. While they awaited the train that Zola on, Rogers and Bucky Barnes reminisced about the time they had gone to Coney Island and Rogers had thrown up from a ride, with Barnes comparing it to their new mission.
As the train was spotted, Dum Dum Dugan and Jacques Dernier had assisted Rogers, Barnes and Gabe Jones by setting up their zip line across the mountains as they then led a stealth attack and prepared to board Zola's armored train. Going first, Rogers warned that they only had a ten-second window to get onto the train as they were all wished luck by James Montgomery Falsworth. The mission had gone ahead as Rogers and Barnes stepped inside the train.
While Jones stayed on top of the train, Rogers and Barnes had gone inside and silently moved through the carriages, searching for Zola. Rogers led the way, with both of them walking their guns armed and ready. However, when Rogers moved into the next carriage, the doors were then suddenly closed between them as they were quickly ambushed, as Rogers had found himself faced with a HYDRA soldier armed with Heavy Assault Rifle which he fired at him.
With Barnes also coming under fire from several HYDRA soldiers who had cornered him, Rogers knew he did not have much time to get to Barnes' aid. Shooting at the HYDRA soldier, Rogers then swung across the carriage on a pulley system before knocking out the soldier. Rogers then used the Heavy Assault Weapon to blast open the door before giving Barnes another gun which he used to kill the final HYDRA soldier who was attempting to attack him.
As they took a breath, Barnes insisted that he had the soldiers on the ropes, reminding Rogers of their conversation regarding the Loud Jerk back home in New York City. However, before the pair could relax, the other soldier returned and fired upon them with his heavy assault rifle and, despite attempting to use Rogers' shield to try and defend himself, Barnes was struck by yet another blast and was thrown from the train before Rogers took out the soldier.
Despite all his desperate efforts to save his friend who was hanging onto the side of the train for dear life, Rogers watched in utter horror as Barnes fell down into the ravine to his presumed death, devastated that he was unable to save his childhood friend. Luckily, Zola was still captured by Gabe Jones and then handed over to Allied forces and interrogated by Chester Phillips. The mission proved to be successful as Zola provided the Allies with the intel needed to defeat HYDRA.
Mourning Bucky Barnes
Following the loss of Bucky Barnes, Rogers went back to London which had been bombed during The Blitz and had a drink alone in the Whip & Fiddle to mourn his friend's death, only to then learn that because of the Super Soldier Serum, he was unable to get drunk. He was joined by Peggy Carter, who tried to assure him that Barnes' unexpected death was not his fault.
Although Rogers insisted that Barnes' death during the Capture of Arnim Zola was his own fault, Carter told him that Barnes knew that their mission to bring an end to World War II was worth giving his life for. Rogers then said that he would not stop until they had finally defeated HYDRA, while also vowing that he would personally take down the Red Skull himself to avenge Barnes' sacrifice, to which Carter reminded him that he would not be alone.
Following the interrogation of Arnim Zola, it was learned that HYDRA was planning an imminent attack on the United States of America. Rogers attended a briefing with running by Chester Phillips and learned about Red Skull's plans with his Tesseract technology while they discussed their plan to bring an end to HYDRA and Red Skull himself. Seeking to avenge Barnes, Rogers, along with Howard Stark and the remaining members of the Howling Commandos, crafted a plan in which Rogers ride into the base alone on his Upgraded Motorcycle and then have the army follow him once he broke through their defenses.
With little time to spare, the Strategic Scientific Reserve put Rogers' plan into action as he rode into the HYDRA Headquarters alone on his motorcycle which had been upgraded with extra weaponry for this mission by Howard Stark. As had Rogers charged towards the base, multiple HYDRA soldiers on motorcycles rode behind him planning to kill him.
However, Rogers used his upgrades from Stark to his advantage, first firing a wire across the trees which knocked several HYDRA soldiers off their motorcycles before Rogers then activated a flame thrower which destroyed several more bikes while also giving him a boost of speed. With only two soldiers remaining, Rogers drove up beside them and simply pulled the pin out of one of their grenades, causing both motorbikes to be destroyed inside a fireball.
As he neared the base, Rogers placed his shield on the front of his bike while he dodged the attacks of a HYDRA Mini Tank that was set up in front of the base that was HYDRA's final line of defense to stop Rogers from getting inside. Having blown up the tank with a missile, Rogers then rode up to the front of the base and leaped inside, dodging fire from the soldiers' Arnimhilation 99L Assault Weapons who were trying to stop him before then activating his motorcycle's self destruct.
Finding himself surrounded, Rogers leaped off the motorcycle and allowed it to crash into the wall of the facility, causing a massive explosion which left a large hole in the wall. Using his shield as his main weapon and defense, Rogers successfully defeated many soldiers inside the outer area of the base, using his incredible strength to throw the men across the battlefield and throwing his shield at them. Rogers continued to fight against all of the soldiers but was eventually stopped when they had arrived with the flamethrowers, trapping him in a box of flames while many others arrived with guns aimed directly at Rogers, ending the clash.
Captured by Red Skull
Having been outgunned during the clash, Rogers was then taken prisoner and brought to the Red Skull inside his quarters. Schmidt noted that Rogers had been incredibly arrogant to attack their HYDRA Headquarters without any other backup, before questioning if Abraham Erskine had told him that there were no limits to their superhuman abilities.
Rogers noted how Erskine had told him that Schmidt was insane, to which Schmidt arrogantly claimed that Erskine had merely resented his genius before trying to deny what he believed was rightfully his with the Super Soldier Serum. When Schmidt noted Rogers had been handed all this power willingly, he asked him why Erskine chose him to undergo Project Rebirth, Rogers simply answered there was nothing special about him, and he was just a kid from Brooklyn.
This angered Schmidt and he punched Rogers and knocked him to the floor until he became calm again. Rogers told Schmidt that he would not give up, and Schmidt prepared to shoot him in the head. However, before he could fire, the Howling Commandos broke into the room, thanks to Arnim Zola's information he gave them, they knew where Schmidt's quarters were and were able to burst through the window to begin their assault and to rescue Rogers.
While the Howling Commandos fired at the HYDRA soldiers and freed Rogers, Schmidt ran from the chaos while his soldiers fought. Unwilling to allow Schmidt to escape Rogers ran after him, with James Montgomery Falsworth quickly throwing him his shield to assist him during the fight. When he eventually caught up to Schmidt, Captain America immediately threw his shield at him; however, it got stuck in a doorway and Schmidt continued running to get to freedom. While Rogers tried to get the shield free, a HYDRA soldier armed with a pair of flamethrowers attempted to kill him, so Rogers was forced to hide behind a corner to protect himself.
As Rogers was forced to hide from the flames, Peggy Carter ran up behind the soldier and shot him the back, causing his Flamethrower to implode and killing him. Rogers then ran straight up to Carter and reminded her of what she had said to him following the Liberation of Allied Prisoners of War by noting that she was late. Carter, however, reminded Rogers to focus on capturing Schmidt, causing Rogers to retake his shield and then continued the chase of Schmidt.
Rogers managed to spot Schmidt just as he was boarding his bomber-plane known as the Valkyrie, along with many soldiers and prepared to take off. While a large battle had just erupted between the HYDRA soldiers and their Strategic Scientific Reserve soldiers, Rogers ran through the battle to get to the Valkyrie and stop Schmidt, leaping over the heads of the soldiers and avoiding the gunfire as he ran as fast as he possibly could to catch up to Schmidt's plane.
However, Schmidt began charging the plane down the runway and Rogers failed to catch up to him. However, just as Schmidt began to get away from him, Rogers was then greeted by Chester Phillips and Carter who had just arrived in Johann Schmidt's Coupe and offered Rogers a ride to catch up with Schmidt. Rogers got in and they raced after the plane, with Phillips also using the car's boost to bring them alongside the plane's wing. Just before he jumped aboard the plane, Rogers and Carter had their first and last kiss, as Phillips had jokingly insisted that he would not be kissing Rogers as well.
As they neared the plane, Rogers prepared to jump on board, with little time to spare as they reached the end of the runway. Just as the plane took off, Rogers leaped onto the wheel and flew away with it, while Carter and Phillips managed to stop in time and watched from the HYDRA Headquarters as Rogers flew away. Once he had gotten on board, Rogers immediately set about looking for Red Skull.
While on the Valkyrie, Rogers discovered the full extent of Red Skull's plan. He noticed that the bombs on board the plane were piloted suicide drones that were going to be detonated over populated cities across the United States of America, killing millions. Rogers stayed unseen for a few minutes, then began attacking the HYDRA soldiers who were getting ready to board their aircraft. Rogers kept the HYDRA soldiers from reaching their aircraft by fighting them off, using a knife to stab one in the back, before dropping another out of the plane with his aircraft, causing him to fall to his death and the bomb to fall into the ocean.
Eventually, one of the soldiers had gotten in a HYDRA Parasit, which Rogers tried to stop from leaving the plane by using his own shield to attack the soldier inside of the cockpit. Unfortunately, it did launch with Rogers and another HYDRA agent on top. While the pilot then desperately attempted to knock Rogers off the aircraft by spinning wildly in the air, this only resulted in the other soldier falling into the path of the propellers, shredding him as Rogers was able to cling on for life and stay on board.
Rogers tried to pull out the soldier who was piloting the Parasit, but he pulled the ejecting button, and Rogers took control of the Parasit. Rogers tried to fly back to the Valkyrie, but the Red Skull proceeded to attempt to shoot Rogers out of the sky by using the ship's main weapons. Rogers dodged these attacks and flew back into the ship, crash landing back inside before reclaiming his shield and going in search of Red Skull in order to finally end their conflict.
Rogers then made his way throughout the plane until he had reached the cockpit, which he found to be seemingly empty. However, Rogers realized just in time that Schmidt had sneaked behind him and fired his Arnimhilation 99L Assault Weapon at him, which he was able to block with his shield just in time. With one of the windows now shattered, Red Skull noted how Rogers clearly never gave up, to which Rogers then admitted was true before charging towards Red Skull to fight.
Having blocked several more shots, Rogers disarmed Schmidt and the pair began fighting one another. While Schmidt briefly managed to get hold of Rogers' shield and had struck him with it, Rogers responded by knocking Schmidt into the controls of the plane, making the ship free fall. While they had a brief fight in midair, Schmidt managed to kick Rogers away before crawling to the controls and getting the ship back into a normal flight path.
Once the plane leveled out, Rogers fell onto a higher platform while Schmidt drew his HYDRA Pistol and attempted to shoot at Rogers. While Rogers avoided the shots, Schmidt ranted that Rogers was misusing the power of all the gods and vowed that the future would have no flags. Refusing to accept this, Rogers then threw his shield at Schmidt as he crashed into the Tesseract Cradle which had been used in order to harness the Tesseract's incredible power.
Horrified that his ultimate prize had been damaged, Schmidt picked up the Tesseract which had been disconnected from the containment unit due to impact. Rogers then looked on as a portal through space opened, which transported Schmidt to Vormir. Rogers, believing the Red Skull had died, then watched while the Tesseract melted a hole into the plane and dropped into the ocean below.
Crashing into Ice
Having witnessed the Red Skull's apparent death, Rogers began to pilot the Valkyrie and desperately attempted to change its flight path away from the United States. However, he quickly realized that the plane was going too fast and the landing controls had been damaged, leaving it permanently stuck on autopilot. With no clear means of landing the plane safely, Rogers used the ship's intercom to then call the HYDRA Headquarters, which was now controlled by the Strategic Scientific Reserve following their victory. While Jim Morita answered, Peggy Carter stepped in and talked to Rogers.
Informing her that the Red Skull had been killed, he told her that the plane was en route to New York City and it was going too fast for him to think of a plan of stopping it. He then told her that the only way to save New York was to crash land the ship into the Arctic, sacrificing his own life. As Rogers descended the ship down, he and Carter spoke to each other as if Rogers was not going to crash, arranging a date to finally go dancing. When the ship finally crashed, it left him trapped and preserved in the ice.
Remembered in History
Rogers was mourned by a nation that had admired his heroic rise from the USO Stage to the newsreels, and who now believed him to be dead due to crashing on the ice. He left a cultural and political impact on the world, changing it for the better or the worse. In his attempt to recover Rogers' body, Howard Stark found the Tesseract, which was studied by the Strategic Scientific Reserve.
Captain America was still a widely famous figure and a radio serial called The Captain America Adventure Program was developed, featuring fictional adventures during the war during which he would battle against Adolf Hitler with the aid of Betty Carver. Despite its ever-growing popularity, the program was extremely historically inaccurate, and Peggy Carter, having being involved in most of Captain America's missions during the war, hated the show, especially because her own role had been fictionalized as the typical "damsel in distress" who was often saved by Captain America.
One of the blood samples that was taken from Captain America after the Assassination of Abraham Erskine was kept by Stark who wanted to use it in the hope that he could potentially develop a panacea from Rogers' Super Soldier Serum-infused blood. Carter confiscated the sample which was kept in the Blitzkrieg Button, and ultimately got rid of it by pouring it off the Brooklyn Bridge. Stark missed his friend greatly and viewed Captain America as his greatest accomplishment, which Johann Fennhoff was able to use as manipulation. However, Carter convinced him, and herself, to finally let him go.
Over the decades following his apart demise, Captain America had passed into memory as the modern world's first superhero, making his exploits in World War II fighting against HYDRA and the Red Skull become well known, especially to the people of the United States of America. In honor of Rogers' heroic legacy, Agent Carter went on to help Stark found S.H.I.E.L.D. and eventually married a man whom Captain America had saved during the course of the war.
Having remained trapped within the ice for nearly seven decades after Rogers' crash landing following his fight with Red Skull on board the Valkyrie, a S.H.I.E.L.D. team led by Director Nick Fury had once again gone in search for his body. A big fan of Captain America, agent Phil Coulson was part of this small team. They searched for a year to find Rogers' body. When they had finally found him, Rogers was discovered to miraculously still be alive while frozen. Rogers was able to survive in sub-zero temperature over the course of seven decades thanks to his enhanced metabolism and immune system.
When Rogers arrived in New York City, he was defrosted and kept in a simulated 1941 environment to try and ease him into what was now happening. When he awoke, he quickly became suspicious; the baseball game broadcast from the radio in the room was one of the Brooklyn Dodgers home games, which he had personally attended at Ebbets Field.
As Rogers put together that he was now being deceived, he was then greeted by a female Agent who wished him a good afternoon. Rogers demanded to know where he was before noting that the Game was from the wrong year and demanded the truth. Scaring the agent, she called for back up as Rogers quickly escaped into the streets of New York City. In Times Square, he discovered to his horror that everything around him had considerably changed.
As Rogers stood in amazement, S.H.I.E.L.D. agents surrounded him before he was then greeted by Nick Fury, who informed him that he had been asleep for nearly seventy years. Rogers realized that many of his friends from the Howling Commandos were all likely dead and he was now lost within a world which he knew nothing about. Thinking sadly about Peggy Carter, Rogers then informed Fury that he had a date with Carter which he unfortunately missed.
Readjusting to Life
Rogers found himself lost in a world that had moved on without him and found it difficult to adjust to his new surroundings considering where he had left his life during World War II. He spent a few weeks inside seclusion at the Retreat that was one of S.H.I.E.L.D.'s many Safe Houses. He then moved into an apartment in New York City. While there, Rogers looked through some files of his friends from the 1940s. He eventually found the file for Peggy Carter, which stated she was still alive.
The file also contained her current phone number, but he hesitated to call because he was afraid of how Carter would react to seeing him after so many decades assuming he was dead. Later, he went to a nearby diner in New York and met Beth, a waitress who asked if he had sat outside Stark Tower in the hope of seeing Tony Stark fly by as Iron Man. When Beth noted they had wireless, Rogers mistakenly thought she meant radio, while a man encouraged him to ask for her number, but Rogers did not. He then went to a boxing gym.
Initiation into the Avengers
- "I slept for seventy years, sir. I think I've had my fill."
"Then you should be out, celebrating, seeing the world."
"I went under the world was at war, I wake up, they say we won. They didn't say what we lost."
"We've made some mistakes along the way. Some very recently."
- ―Steve Rogers to Nick Fury[src]
While working out in a boxing gym, Rogers recounted various events that took place during his era in World War II including his victorious fights against HYDRA alongside the Howling Commandos. However, Rogers recalled Bucky Barnes' death, his fight with Red Skull, his sacrifice, the last conversation with Peggy Carter, and being discovered and defrosted. These memories of his life before waking in 2011 infuriated Rogers until he broke the punching bag.
Just at the moment when Rogers was putting up a second punching bag, Director Nick Fury approached him and questioned if he was having trouble sleeping, to which Rogers noted that he had almost slept for seventy years and therefore had had his fill. As he took off his gloves, Rogers noted how when he had awoken, he was told the war against Adolf Hitler and the Nazi Party had been won, but he was unsure what America had lost in the meantime. Fury then explained that he had come to Rogers with a new mission that he was needed for, which was not just to get Rogers back out into the world, but was in fact to save the entire world from ultimate destruction.
Director Fury then informed Rogers that a dangerous and powerful being known as Loki had stolen the Tesseract and intended to use it to conquer and rule the Earth. Having heard this, Rogers was not thrilled to learn that HYDRA's secret weapon and power source had found its way into this era, as Rogers had last seen it falling into the sea following the defeat of Johann Schmidt during the Battle in the Valkyrie. Fury then explained that Howard Stark had discovered the Tesseract while searching for Rogers, believing that this could be the key to unlimited and sustainable energy all around the world.
Rogers accepted the assignment to track down the Tesseract and Loki as Fury noted that S.H.I.E.L.D. would bring him up to speed on everything before the mission to find Loki went ahead. When Fury noted that since he had been asleep the world had become even stranger than he knew, Rogers and Fury made a bet for ten dollars that nothing would surprise him anymore. When Fury had asked him if there was any more useful information regarding the Tesseract that S.H.I.E.L.D. was not already aware of, to which Rogers stated that they should have left it in the ocean before walking out.
Meeting the Avengers
On his way to S.H.I.E.L.D. for the mission aboard the Quinjet, Rogers was debriefed by Phil Coulson about the selected people who were part of the Avengers Initiative. One member in particular that intrigued Rogers was Bruce Banner. Coulson revealed to him that Banner attempted to recreate Abraham Erskine's Super Soldier Serum, resulting in Banner being exposed to high levels of gamma radiation and transforming into Hulk, although Coulson had insisted that Banner was still a genius.
Coulson and Rogers shared an awkward moment when he revealed that he watched Rogers being defrosted following his discovery in the Arctic and then expressed with great enthusiasm how much of an honor it was to have Rogers on board to lead this team. Rogers was somewhat skeptical of himself being the right candidate to lead this new team against Loki: However, Coulson reassured Rogers that he was before explaining and that he had personally had overseen the development of their Newly Constructed Uniform for Rogers to wear which included design input from himself regarding the look.
Rogers was surprised that he would be wearing his trademark stars and stripes since in this modern era it would appear to be outdated and old-fashioned in 2012. Coulson, however, reassured him that with the enormous threat they were about to face, people would need an old-fashioned symbol to inspire them with hope that would be much needed. Once arriving onto the Helicarrier, Rogers was introduced to Natasha Romanoff, as well as Banner who was now awkwardly walking all around the Helicarrier before shaking Rogers' hand and expressing his amazement at seeing Rogers alive.
While Rogers and Banner discussed finding the Tesseract, they were advised by Romanoff to move back inside, just moments before the entire Helicarrier then lifted into the air, much to Rogers' amazement while Banner jokingly noted what a poor idea this was due to the risk of him transforming into Hulk and causing complete mayhem inside the flying headquarters. Rogers, Banner and Romanoff then stepped inside the main control room where Nick Fury then ordered his second in command, Maria Hill, that the ship's cloaking be put on, allowing them to not only fly but become invisible.
Rogers watched all of this latest technology with amazement before walking over to Fury and fulfilling the bet they had made by paying him ten dollars as he was suitably amazed by what he had just seen. While Rogers continued exploring the entire ship, Banner then spoke to Fury about searching for the Tesseract, while Romanoff noted her fear that they would not find Loki and his mind controlled hostages, who included Clint Barton and Erik Selvig in time. Banner suggested that they track down the Tesseract by using Gamma Radiation, with Fury agreeing to use S.H.I.E.L.D.'s contacts to get this done.
While they waited for results from Banner's search for the Tesseract so they could then go down and capture Loki to bring an end to the conflict, Rogers stood beside Agent Coulson who, as Romanoff had warned him about previously, shyly asked if Rogers would be willing to sign his vintage Captain America Card Collection which he had collected. Once Rogers agreed to sign the cards, Coulson continued speaking with him as he noted that they were his vintage set which had taken him several years to collect all of them, while also proudly commented on how they were still in almost mint condition.
Eventually, their hunt paid of as Jasper Sitwell informed his superiors that Loki had been located in Stuttgart, Germany, with Sitwell also commenting his great surprise that Loki did not appear to even be attempting to hide his own identity. Once they had confirmed Loki's location, Director Nick Fury informed Rogers that he would be in charge of capturing Loki before he immediately suited up into his New Uniform and headed off to Germany, with Natasha Romanoff acting as his backup.
Upon arriving in Germany at the Gala, Rogers witnessed Loki forcing an entire crowd of the bystanders to kneel before him, following the murder of Heinrich Schäfer. Seeing Loki was about to execute some of the terrified people, Captain America used his shield to deflect an incoming blast from Loki's Scepter, thus protecting an elderly man who refused to kneel before Loki. Rogers commented that the last time he had been in Germany during World War II, he had come into conflict with HYDRA and the Red Skull who he had previously also defeated. Getting back onto his feet, Loki noted that Rogers was the soldier he had already heard of, calling him a man out of time.
Rogers, however, noted that he was not the one who was out as time, just before Black Widow appeared behind in the Quinjet and ordered Loki to surrender. As Loki defiantly fired a beat of energy from his Scepter which barely missed the Quinjet, Rogers then engaged in a fierce battle with Loki. who often gained the upper hand due to his superior Asgardian strength, blocking yet another throw of his shield. Standing over him, Loki tried to force Rogers to kneel in surrender, but Rogers swore that he would not. Their fight continued although Rogers was at a disadvantage against the God of Mischief.
Captain America had managed to hold his own with his fight against Loki, despite being considerably outmatched by the Asgardian's own strength, just long enough for Iron Man to arrive on the scene. As Iron Man flew down, he fired his powerful blast which knocked Loki back before aiming every weapon his Mark VI Armor had towards the God of Mischief. As Rogers reclaimed his shield and stood by Iron Man, Loki seemingly surrendered so easily, dropping his Scepter and then agreeing to go with them as their prisoner, making Rogers somewhat suspicious that it had been far too easy to defeat him.
On route back to the Helicarrier, Rogers spoke to Tony Stark, noting that he was highly uneasy with Loki's surrender, as it appeared to be far too easy considering the fight they had previously engaged with. While they were speaking, Stark openly mocked Rogers, before they discussed how Director Nick Fury would often keep secrets from them both. However, they were interrupted by a mysterious thunderstorm, as Rogers saw a frightened Loki, he sarcastically asked if he afraid of lightning.
Loki, however, explained that he was nervous because he was in fact not fond of what would soon follow all the lightning, making Rogers somewhat uneasy. Without warning, Thor then appeared on the roof of the Quinjet and promptly broke inside. As Stark donned his Mark VI Armor, Thor knocked him back into Rogers before he grabbed Loki and flew away with him. Stark immediately pursued them and, despite Black Widow advising him to sit it out, being too dangerous for him, Rogers skydived after both of them, insisting that there was only one god and he did not dress like either Thor or Loki.
Having parachuted down to Stuttgart, Rogers eventually arrived in the forest area to witness Thor and Iron Man engaged in a fearsome battle against each other for the capture of Loki, with Thor intending to bring Loki back into Asgard to face imprisonment for his crimes. Using his shield, Captain America had intervened and attempted to reason with Thor, questioning what it was he was doing there. Once Rogers pointed out that they should not be fighting with each other, but should instead join forces against Loki's schemes, asking Thor to put his hammer down as the sign of peace between them.
In response, Thor refused to put down his hammer and instead knocked Iron Man back, before then leaping towards Captain America, bringing Mjølnir down upon his shield. The shield absorbed the impact instead, and had created a massive shockwave throughout the surrounding woodland, sending Thor hurtling backward. Afterward, the three of them stood up and looked at each other. Once they saw the massive amount of damage caused from their clash, they agreed to stop fighting and then taking Loki into captivity together, bringing him back to the Helicarrier to be locked away in there.
Working on the Helicarrier
While Loki was escorted on board the Helicarrier and placed into a steel containment cell specifically designed to hold Hulk if this was necessary, Rogers and his other teammates watched the holographic video of Nick Fury interrogating Loki over his schemes before Rogers asked Thor about what he intended, with Thor revealing that Loki had an army of the Chitauri who he would use to conquer the Earth, handing over the Tesseract to his leader in exchange.
As the group attempted to learn Loki's primary objective and why he had just allowed himself to be captured by them, Tony Stark arrived with Phil Coulson on the bridge and explained exactly why Loki now needed to use Iridium and Erik Selvig's knowledge to stabilize and harness the Tesseract's energy to open a portal. Rogers questioned what kind of Power Source Loki would need which Stark and Bruce Banner discussed in detail. They then discussed Loki's Scepter, with Fury comparing its power of brainwashing to the Wizard of Oz, which excited Rogers as he had finally understood this reference.
Upon Fury's request, Banner had teamed up with Stark to locate the Tesseract. Rogers walked in on Stark attempting to provoke Banner into turning into Hulk, and confronted him about the potential danger he could cause, demanding that he instead resume the task of finding the location of the Tesseract. Stark, however, revealed that his primary focus had become learning exactly why S.H.I.E.L.D. had brought them all together and what Director Fury was planning for bringing them together at this time. Rogers then questioned if Stark thought Fury was hiding something important from all of them, which Stark had confirmed as he noted that Fury was still a spy.
Stark then forced Doctor Banner revealed his own misgivings about S.H.I.E.L.D.'s motivations behind researching the Tesseract in the first place, with Banner noting that Loki's quote about a warm light for all mankind, while he was being interrogated, might have been a reference to Stark Tower back in New York City. Stark then revealed that he was using J.A.R.V.I.S. to hack into the Helicarrier in order to learn what Fury was hiding for them, which made Rogers incredibly uncomfortable, leading to Rogers accusing Stark of refusing to stay focused on defeating Loki, which Stark insisted was not true.
Becoming initially doubtful of their theories, Rogers ordered Stark to go back to tracking down the Tesseract before he then went off and searched the storage areas of the Helicarrier. Sneaking into closed off parts of the ship, Rogers had eventually discovered what Fury was seemingly hiding from them. Opening a box hidden in one of the rooms, Rogers found HYDRA weaponry and technology, including the Arnimhilation 99L Assault Weapons which had been used by the Red Skull and surmised that S.H.I.E.L.D. was in fact attempting to harness all the power of the Tesseract to create similar weapons to these.
- "Big man in a suit of armor. Take that off, what are you?"
"Genius, billionaire, playboy, philanthropist."
"I know guys with none of that worth ten of you. And I've seen the footage. The only thing that you really fight for is yourself. You're not the guy to make the sacrifice play. To lay down on the wire and let the other guy crawl over you."
- ―Captain America and Tony Stark[src]
As Rogers returned with the Arnimhilation 99L Assault Weapon, he had personally confronted Director Nick Fury about his secret intentions to use the Tesseract to make weapons based on the Red Skull's original designs. An intense argument broke out between the team with Director Fury and the other members of the Avengers as they demanded information on Phase 2, until Fury confessed to be finding ways to protect Earth from Asgardians and other powerful cosmic beings.
As the argument intensified, Thor explained that it was Fury's work with the Tesseract that had attracted Loki and his allies to it, leading to Stark comparing Phase 2 to a nuclear detergent, while Rogers and Fury made a comment on how Stark Industries had previously made money building weapons for the United States Armed Forces. While Rogers and Tony Stark argued on the ethics of heroism, Rogers had argued that Stark was not the type of man who would make the real sacrifice, while Stark argued that the only reason Rogers was special was due to Howard Stark's work with the Super Soldier Serum.
With everyone agreeing that they were being manipulated by Fury, Doctor Bruce Banner claimed that the Avengers were not a team but a time bomb. As Stark made jokes, Rogers began to lose his temper as he threatened to fight Stark, leading to Thor laughing at them. Finally, Banner began confronting everyone, confessing to have once tried to end his own life before picking up the Scepter as he became more angry. Seeing this, Rogers managed to get through to him as Banner realized that Loki had been manipulating all of them while he was on the Helicarrier which is what had led to the argument.
As the group's argument came to a head, the Helicarrier came under attack by Hawkeye, who fired one of his Explosive Arrows to damage one of the Helicarrier's engines, threatening to make it fall out of the sky. This forced Captain America and Iron Man to put aside their differences and work together to help to save the damaged ship before it was too late. While Iron Man repaired the turbine, Captain America first checked the computer relays, which he struggled with due to his personal lack of understanding of modern technology.
Once he had completed his task, Rogers was informed that Iron Man would be restarting the Helicarrier's propellers himself, and therefore he needed Rogers to pull a red lever when he called him to allow Iron Man to get free before he was shredded. However, as Rogers waited for Iron Man's signal, he was forced to fend off Loki's brainwashed agents, with one attempting to throw his grenade to further damage the propellers which Rogers managed to block before firing at them with a machine gun as he desperately attempted to keep them at bay while Iron Man was working on restarting the engines.
However, while Rogers was still engaged with his firefight, the entire Helicarrier began to fall to its side as Clint Barton had successfully gotten past Nick Fury and Maria Hill before using yet another one of his Trick Arrows to shut down the Helicarrier's power. With Loki's agent still firing at him while the Helicarrier tilted, Rogers had lost his footing and fell from the platform, barely holding on by grabbing a wire. Meanwhile, Iron Man began requesting that Rogers pull the lever as requested, forcing Rogers to use his strength to pull himself back onto the platform while still avoiding all the enemy gunfire.
Rogers was just able to pull the lever as required moments before Iron Man would have been shredded in the propeller blades, allowing Iron Man to fly to his aid and knock out the final one of Loki's agent before he could shoot Rogers. Rogers and Stark then learned that during the ensuing battle, both Thor and Hulk were thrown from the Helicarrier and now their locations were currently still unknown, while agent Phil Coulson had tragically been killed when he was impaled through the back with Loki's Scepter moments before Loki managed to make his successful his own escape from the Helicarrier.
Mourning Phil Coulson
Following the Attack on the Helicarrier, Rogers and Tony Stark had a meeting with Director Nick Fury to discuss what to do next following these events. Fury showed Rogers Agent Phil Coulson's vintage Captain America Card Collection which he had not managed to sign before his death, while Rogers saw them stained with Coulson's blood. Fury explained his intention to form the Avengers fight the battles that S.H.I.E.L.D. never could, noting Stark knew about this.
Stark left the meeting early and went to the spot where Coulson had died while he had been trying to save Thor's life. Rogers spoke with him there, questioning if Coulson was married and learning of his relationship with a cellist. When Rogers called Coulson a good man, Stark claimed that he was an idiot for not waiting for backup before engaging in the fight. While Rogers tried to get his mind back on the mission and focused on Loki, he questioned if his was the first time Stark had ever lost a fellow soldier, leading to Stark claiming they were not soldiers and refusing to fight for Fury anymore.
As Rogers continued trying to keep Stark focused, he noted that Loki needed a power source for the Tesseract and they needed to focus on figuring out where this could be. When Stark noted that in killing Coulson and trying to tear them apart, Loki had made this conflict personal, noting that this was entirely the point as Loki wanted to be seen being victorious over the Earth. All Rogers' own attempts to get through to him worked, while Stark realized that Loki required Stark Tower back in New York City to power the Tesseract as this had been designed to create self sustaining energy which Loki needed.
Recruiting the Avengers
The death of Phil Coulson was would finally bring the team together. Regardless of all he had been through thus far in the modern world, Rogers soon found the strength to do what needed to be done and take command of the Avengers as their new leader. As Iron Man flew into New York City and confronted Loki directly, Rogers and Natasha Romanoff teamed up with the recently recovered Clint Barton, who had just been successfully freed from Loki's mind control.
Having put on his uniform and collected his shield, Captain America alongside Romanoff and Barton had then matched together inside the hanger and took over a Quinjet which was being watched by Agent Tyler who tried to stop them but was instead ordered to leave by Rogers, as Tyler offered no further resistance. Despite their direct orders from Director Nick Fury and Maria Hill to stay onboard while they still continued repairing their own ship and gathering their intelligence back, Barton piloted the Quinjet off the Helicarrier instead as they flew away to New York in order to assist Iron Man.
When they eventually arrived in New York, they discovered to their horror that Loki had already succeeded in his plan as a portal had opened from Stark Tower above the city and the Chitauri army had begun their attack. As Loki engaged in a fight against Thor, a blast from Loki's Scepter caused their Quinjet was shot down, but they were all able to survive the crash due to Barton's flying skills. As they ran out inside the streets, Captain America looked up into the portal and saw a monstrous Leviathan flying down and laying waste to the city, with even more Chitauri warriors leaping off the Leviathan.
Seeing the countless forces still attacking from their portal, Captain America took cover beside Black Widow and Hawkeye and noticed Loki riding one of the Chitauri Chariots and firing down upon all the innocent bystanders. Knowing that he had to get the people out of harms way, Captain America had agreed to leave Black Widow and Hawkeye to fight off the Chitauri soldiers on the ground while he ran ahead. Leaping off the bridge, Captain America then jumped from a crashed bus, which was promptly destroyed by Chitauri fire before running down the streets as fast as he possibly could.
As Rogers felt his priority should be ensuring the protection of the endangered civilians, he ran to the nearest officers of the New York City Police Department, dodging the Chituari attacks as he went. Finding Officers Silva and Saunders, Captain America gave him orders for how to ensure the safety of the people. Officer Silva questioned why he should take orders from Rogers, but before he could answer, he was attacked by three Chitauri soldiers who he defeated with ease. Seeing Captain America's strength and skill in battle, Officer Silva decided to instead follow his orders.
Fighting the Chitauri
Having just ensured the safety of the innocent bystanders during all of the chaos, Captain America then regrouped with Black Widow and Hawkeye who were still fighting back against the Chitauri, using their guns and bow and arrows as their primary weapons against the invaders. They were then joined by Thor, who confirmed that the Tesseract could not be damaged as they agreed to focus of the attacking army for the time being as Rogers came up with their battle plan.
Before Rogers could continue working out his battle plan, they were joined by Bruce Banner who commented on the horror around them. When they witnessed a Leviathan coming towards them, Rogers had advised Banner to get angry as Banner noted that his secret was that he was always angry before he transformed into Hulk and then destroyed the Leviathan, as Rogers used his shield to protect Black Widow from the explosion. With the Avengers assembled, Rogers proved his tactical genius by giving each member their assignment in order to fight back against the massive invading alien army.
Captain America ordered Hawkeye to stake out from a building to call out patterns and any strays, Iron Man to provide air support and superiority, Thor to use Mjølnir's lightning blasts to bottleneck the portal, therefore preventing any reinforcements from coming through. As the others went off to complete their tasks, Captain America told Black Widow that they would fight together in order to keep the fighting on the ground, and for Hulk to simply do what he does best: smash. Rogers then fought beside Romanoff to take on countless numbers of Chitauri troops that were coming their way.
While the battle went ahead and the Avengers did their duty, Captain America assisted Black Widow as she was fighting just one Chitauri soldier, using her own bite to stun the alien before turning his staff back on it. As they overlooked the burning battlefield, Rogers noted that they had to find someway of closing the Tesseract's portal in order to end the invasion. Romanoff decided to go to the top of Stark Tower herself and attempt to close it, asking Rogers to help her by launching her up in the air and allowing her to catch a ride on one of the Chitauri Chariots flying overhead.
While Romanoff flew across the battlefield in order to get near to the Tesseract and speak with Erik Selvig about how they could stop it, Captain America found himself surrounded by the alien forces who fired their guns at him. While Captain America held them back on his own, he was eventually rejoined by Iron Man, who flew down, knocking several of the aliens off the bridge before they then teamed up as Iron Man fired a beam of energy at his shield which deflected and intensified the beam as he knocked back and killed several more of the attacking Chitauri forces.
While he was taking out yet another Chitauri soldier who had pinned him down, Rogers had heard from Clint Barton that the Chitauri had taken a large group of over five dozen innocent civilians as their hostages inside of a nearby bank, with these hostages also including the waitress Beth who he had previously met. These aliens prepared to execute them with an explosion, but Captain America dived into the building used his shield to take down the lead Chitauri. In his desperate attempt to save the innocent civilians, Rogers began to take out this entire battalion of the invaders by himself.
However, during the fight, Captain America's Helmet was torn off his face before he knocked back the other Chitauri soldier behind him. Looking up, Rogers realized that a Helmetless Chitauri and picked the Chitauri Bomb back up, while Rogers dived for his shield which saved him from the explosion, although he was still blasted out the building, landing hard on a nearby car. As Captain America painfully got back to his feet, he watched as members of the United States Armed Forces and New York City Police Department then took all of the terrified civilians away from the still active danger zone.
Closing the Portal
Rejoining their battle against this Chitauri Invasion, Captain America was soon partnered with Thor, together taking out wave after wave of enemies. Rogers had taken a direct hit on the side from a Chitauri staff, which injured him. However, he still refused to stop fighting. Eventually, Gideon Malick and the rest of the World Security Council decided to drop a nuclear bomb onto New York City in order to prevent the Chitauri from spreading, despite the fact that it would destroy Manhattan and kill everyone there in the process.
Once the missile had been launched, Director Nick Fury immediately informed Iron Man of the bomb coming straight for them with mere minutes to spare. Despite Black Widow noting that she could use the Scepter to close the Tesseract's portal, Stark told Rogers not to give the order yet as he managed to fly the bomb through the portal and have it destroy the Chitauri Command Center which in turn killed the Chitauri soldiers. However, it appeared that Stark had been killed in the explosion. Seeing no other choice, Rogers ordered Romanoff to close the portal, thus saving the entire Earth from conquest.
Just as the portal was being closed, they discovered that Stark had managed to survive: However, he was unconscious and tumbling down to the ground at some speed. Stark was saved from the fall back to Earth by Hulk as Rogers and Thor quickly ran to his aid. They discovered Stark's heart was not beating; however, Hulk managed to scare him awake with a roar. When he awoke, Rogers informed Stark that they had won the war. Rogers then joined all the other Avengers going up to Stark Tower in order to recapture Loki who, knowing he was defeated, finally surrendered without any resistance. The rest of the Avengers then proceeded to go down to the first floor to meet with Alexander Pierce and his agents while Captain America stayed behind to coordinate a search and rescue team.
Departing the Avengers
Following their victory in the Chitauri Invasion and before they split up, Captain America and all of their other Avengers then ate silently together in the Shawarma Palace. While they were eating, they were interrupted by the arrival of War Machine, who arrived too late to help them in the battle. Sometime after the battle, they gathered in Central Park to see Thor return home to Asgard with the Tesseract with a bound and muzzled Loki, as Rogers closely watched the Tesseract's transportation.
Once Thor had departed with Loki to bring him to justice by placing him into the Asgardian Dungeons, the rest of the Avengers then went their separate ways until the next time Earth needed its Mightiest Heroes to defend it from whatever threat came. Rogers personally shook hands with Tony Stark before Stark and Bruce Banner drove off together, as Rogers then rode off on his motorcycle to see what awaited him in this new world. Rogers was then soon employed by Director Nick Fury to come and work for S.H.I.E.L.D. as an agent, to allow him to continue defending the world from dangers.
- "Hi. I'm Captain America. Here to talk to you about one of the most valuable traits a soldier or a student can have – patience. Sometimes patience is the key to victory. Sometimes, it leads to very little; seems like it's not worth it. And you wonder... why you waited so long for something so disappointing."
- ―Captain America[src]
Sometime following the Battle of New York, Captain America, on the behalf of the Department of Education, was recruited to host his own fitness challenge for the United States' public schools, such as the Midtown School of Science and Technology. He also hosted a series of public service videos, which were dubbed Rappin' With Cap, covering various topics with the purpose of educating America's youth.
The topics Captain America had spoken about to the schoolchildren included fire hazards, the importance of a nutritional diet, human reproduction, the vitality of math and reading skills, tooth decay, head lice, and detention. In one of the videos, Rogers spoke long and hard about the virtue of patience, claiming it could be the key to victory or could potentially lead to very little and be somewhat disappointing for the person who had waited. Ironically, he grew impatient during filming and asked how many more videos were left.
In his early days on being a S.H.I.E.L.D. agent, Rogers was not very trusting in in the organization. He was partners with fellow Avenger, Natasha Romanoff. One day, they drank a milkshake in an old Brooklyn diner where Rogers grew up. They were undercover trying to stop a mercenary group called the Cadre from kidnapping Sana Amanat to make weapons for them. Captain America eventually defeated them with help of Amanat, who kicked the last member while being in a choke hold.
Another time, Rogers, Brock Rumlow, and Romanoff were in pursuit of Baker and his team because they stole the Zodiac. Baker took the Zodiac and jumped off the building, intending to set off his parachute. However, Rogers jumped after him and held onto the chord, disabling the parachute. A frightened Baker handed over the Zodiac so that Rogers would let go. Rogers told his team that he thought the Zodiac was destroyed, but Romanoff explained that S.H.I.E.L.D. said that to keep its availability a secret. This caused Rogers to not trust S.H.I.E.L.D. even more.
Meeting Sam Wilson
While on an early morning jog in Washington, D.C., Rogers frequently overlapped a man; every time he passed him, Rogers jokingly called out to him "on your left." Rogers later caught up again with the man who introduced himself as Sam Wilson, a former air force veteran with the United States Armed Forces who was now working in the Department of Veterans Affairs.
Wilson was able to fully understand Rogers' experiences of being a veteran returning home from World War II and all of the difficulties surrounding that experience, with the pair discussing how sleeping on a comfortable bed had become much more difficult for them. Rogers listed off all the ways that living in 2014 was not as bad as it might appear, pointing out how helpful the internet was with helping him catch up with what he had missed while frozen. The two talked about their lives and Wilson recommended some music for Rogers to listen to, including Marvin Gaye, which he added to his list of things in the new world he had to watch, listen to or experience.
They were interrupted when Natasha Romanoff arrived to pick Rogers up for his newest S.H.I.E.L.D. mission after texting him. As Rogers was leaving, he teased Wilson by inviting him to go running some other time while Wilson then invited Rogers to come and join him at a meeting for those suffering from Post-traumatic Stress Disorder, which Rogers then promised to do so. As Romanoff pulled up, she jokingly asked where the Smithsonian was, comparing Rogers to a fossil.
Taken on board a Quinjet to be flown to the mission while also being debriefed, Rogers was told by Brock Rumlow that they needed to rescue hostages of Georges Batroc who had hijacked a S.H.I.E.L.D. ship, the Lemurian Star, somewhere in the Indian Ocean. Captain America ensured that he knew exactly how many hostages were on board, which included Jasper Sitwell, before complaining about Director Nick Fury sending them on missions like this to cover his errors. Captain America gave Rumlow and the other members of STRIKE their mission orders before then preparing to go into combat himself.
Rogers was tasked with attacking the ship first, as his own strength enhanced by the Super Soldier Serum would give him the advantage in the battle. As he prepared his own uniform for the mission, Rogers spoke with Natasha Romanoff who tried to set him up on a date, much to Rogers' disagreement as he still loved Peggy Carter and felt he had too much work. Much to Jack Rollins' surprise, Rogers then dived off the Quinjet into the ocean without a parachute to slow his descent.
Having landed on the Lemurian Star alone, Captain America single-handedly defeated almost every pirate on the ship without raising the alarm. Using his shield to gain the advantage, he managed to get past teams of Batroc's soldiers before they could fight back. When one pirate came close to alerting Batroc, Captain America stopped him with a knife throw and was saved by Rumlow shooting another pirate before continuing on his mission.
Captain America requested that Black Widow give him an update, but she was busy subduing Gerald Durand along with all of Batroc's pirates. Once Black Widow was in position and had ensured that the ship would not be moving, Rogers ordered STRIKE to get ready as Rumlow shot the remaining pirates and rescued the hostages while Romanoff cleared out the engine room. As Rumlow's team engaged the pirates, Captain America threw his shield at Batroc, who made his escape.
With Sitwell and the other hostages now safe, Captain America then went searching for Batroc, while Rumlow then informed him that Romanoff had seemingly vanished during the mission and not met with STRIKE like she was supposed to. Before he could find out where Romanoff was, Captain America was suddenly ambushed by Batroc. The pirate taunted Captain America about relying on his shield or other weapons.
Accepting Batroc's other to fight by speaking in French, Captain America then fought against him in purely hand-to-hand combat. During their battle, Captain America discovered that Batroc was a more formidable fighter than he had anticipated as he had able to deflect all of his own attacks. Despite Batroc's continued attempts to kill him, Captain America proved to have the advantage due to the Serum inside his veins, which Batroc did not stand a chance against. Eventually, Captain America won and knocked Batroc out by smashing him through a locked door and knocking him out with a final hard punch.
After the fight, Rogers discovered Romanoff hacking into the ship's computer. He learned she had a secret assignment to recover some S.H.I.E.L.D. data from the ship through a USB drive. This somewhat annoyed Rogers, who was unhappy at being kept in the dark about the fact that Romanoff had now been given a secondary mission by Fury. The situation was made worse when Batroc woke up and threw a grenade at the pair. Rogers deflected the grenade with his shield and they leaped out of the path of the explosion. They both survived the explosion, but Batroc escaped during the chaos. Rogers made it clear he blamed Romanoff for the failure to capture him.
- "Greatest generation? You guys did some nasty stuff."
"Yeah, we compromised. Sometimes in ways that made us not sleep so well. But we did it so the people could be free. This isn't freedom. This is fear."
"S.H.I.E.L.D. takes the world as it is, not as we'd like it to be."
- ―Nick Fury and Steve Rogers[src]
Reporting back to Director Nick Fury at the Triskelion, Rogers then expressed his anger with Fury over lying to him. Rogers claimed that Fury's plan to give Black Widow a secret order endangered the entire mission, noting that his own team should be able to trust each other. Fury argued that he had sent in Captain America purely so that this did not happen and that the last time he trusted someone, he lost an eye. Eventually, Fury promised Rogers that he would now be more honest with him.
Fury then took Rogers to the facility's sub-levels, telling a story along the way of how his own Grandfather used to carry a large gun with him at all times in order to ensure he was never mugged for his lunch bag. Fury told Rogers that S.H.I.E.L.D. had something bigger than his Grandfather's gun as he showed him the new Helicarriers were being constructed in the hangar, with brand new technology and weapons designed by Tony Stark to make them more advanced.
Introducing Rogers to Project Insight, Fury explained that S.H.I.E.L.D. now planned to use the Helicarriers to eliminate threats to the United States of America before they even happened. Rogers was discontent with this, finding S.H.I.E.L.D.'s newest methods to be too extreme. When Fury noted what Rogers' generation did during World War II, Rogers insisted this was not the same, claiming Fury was spreading fear and not freedom. When Fury insisted Rogers get behind the program, he refused and left.
Disillusioned by Director Nick Fury's new attitude towards national security, Rogers revisited his past by visiting the Captain America division of the Smithsonian Institution. There, he saw videos of his time in World War II with all of the Howling Commandos fighting against Red Skull. When a young boy recognized him, Rogers smiled and gestured him to keep quiet, which the amazed boy agreed to do.
Rogers found a memorial for Bucky Barnes, which presented him as Rogers' friend and the only member of the Howling Commandos to lose his life in the fight against HYDRA. Rogers then watched an interview with Peggy Carter where she discussed her relationship with Rogers and how he changed her life even after she believed him to have been killed in action. Carter told the story of when Rogers had saved over 1000 men, including the man who became her husband.
Rogers went to see Carter in her retirement home, now aged past ninety years. They discussed the changing world, and Rogers admitted that the reason he stayed at S.H.I.E.L.D. was partly because she helped found it. Rogers went on to express how he had hoped that now serving with S.H.I.E.L.D. and the Avengers would help him find his place in the new world, but it just was not the same or as simple as it was during World War II. Carter then laughed that Rogers was always overdramatic about this sort of thing.
Carter told Rogers that while he had saved the world, she and others had mucked it up while he had been gone. When Carter began to cough, Rogers handed her a glass of water. She looked up and appeared to have forgotten their entire conversation, reacting like she was seeing Rogers for the first time in seventy years; Carter had developed Alzheimer's in her old age. Though saddened, Rogers smiled and told Carter that he could never leave his best girl while she owed him a dance.
Seeking some new advice, Rogers decided to visit the Department of Veterans Affairs to listen to Sam Wilson talk to soldiers who were suffering from Posttraumatic stress disorder. Rogers found himself feeling at home around other United States Armed Forces veterans as he listened to their stories about how they had come home only to feel of out of place. Wilson offered them all whatever advice he could to try and help them move forward.
Rogers spoke to Wilson after the meeting as they discussed what they were going through as former soldiers, with Wilson revealing that his friend and partner, Riley, was killed in action. When he questioned if Rogers was considering retiring, Rogers told Wilson that he had no idea what else to do with his life other than obey orders and serve. Wilson joked he could be the Ultimate Fighter before he encouraged Rogers he could do whatever it was that he wanted to do.
Loss of Nick Fury
Riding his motorcycle back towards his apartment building late in the evening, Rogers parked it and then went upstairs towards his own apartment to rest, still considering both of his recent talks with Peggy Carter and Sam Wilson as well as his place within S.H.I.E.L.D. in the wake of learning of the new Project Insight. Rogers had strong disagreements about the moral implications of possibly supporting such a project, still believing that its use of preemptive targeting now promoted fear for America.
Once reaching his floor, Rogers had a brief talk with his neighbor, Kate, about how her work as a nurse was going. He even built up the courage to then ask Kate out on a date by offering to let her use his own washing machine in exchange for having a cup of coffee with him. However, Kate declined for the moment since her hospital scrubs had been exposed to germs, much to his slight disappointment. Rogers then became suspicious when Kate told him that she'd heard his stereo playing, which he had turned off.
Rogers snuck into his apartment through the window and found Nick Fury sitting on his couch. Fury claimed to Rogers that his wife kicked him out; however, when Rogers turned on the lamp, he saw that Fury was severely injured. Fury revealed from his phone that they might be overheard by someone as enemies in S.H.I.E.L.D. were listening in. Fury told Rogers that only his friends knew the truth about him. Without warning, Fury was shot several times in his back through the wall, collapsing into Rogers' arms.
With the remaining strength he had, Fury gave the Lemurian Star flash drive to Rogers and ordered him not to trust anyone before falling unconscious. While Rogers pulled Fury out of the way and behind cover, his neighbor then smashed in the door, armed with a gun and revealing herself to be Agent 13, hired by Fury to keep an eye on Rogers. Agent 13 called for medical assistance and explained the situation to S.H.I.E.L.D. while desperately trying to save Fury.
Rogers spotted the assassin attempting to make his getaway, so he grabbed his shield and went in pursuit, leaping from his apartment window into the building across the street and leaving Agent 13 to take care of Fury. Rogers smashed his way through various office doors and was still barely able to keep up with the incredibly fast assassin. Using all of his strength, Rogers kept just behind the assassin until he saw a chance to confront him.
Rogers eventually caught up and threw his shield at the assassin, but the masked assailant easily caught it with his cybernetic arm. Rogers was shocked at this as the two enemies locked eyes with each other before the assassin threw the shield back at Rogers with some considerable force. Rogers was so winded that he paused for just a moment, allowing the assassin to escape as Rogers looked out over the city for him.
Fury was taken to a hospital where Rogers rejoined him and observed the operation with Natasha Romanoff by his side. They watched together in horror as it was reported that Fury's heart had stopped. Rogers and Romanoff were joined by Maria Hill and other agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. as the doctors operated, but were unable to revive him and Doctor Fine pronounced him dead. Fury was taken away and Hill asked to take care of the body. Romanoff began to question Rogers about the identity of the shooter, predicting that the bullets used were Soviet upon hearing about his incredible speed and robotic arm, indicating she knew who the assassin was.
Upon being questioned by Romanoff about why Fury was inside his apartment, Rogers feigned ignorance about why Fury went to him. Before they could continue the discussion, Agent Brock Rumlow informed Rogers that he was wanted for a hearing at the Triskelion with Alexander Pierce to discuss what had happened. Romanoff told Rogers that he was a terrible liar. He then used this quiet moment to hide the USB Fury had given him in a vending machine.
Alexander Pierce's Warning
When he arrived at the Triskelion, Captain America had encountered Agent 13 again just as she left Alexander Pierce's office. As they passed one another, Rogers barely acknowledged her before shaking Pierce's hand, with Pierce claiming it was an honor to meet him as his own father had served with Rogers during World War II. Rogers was questioned by Pierce, who said he was one of Nick Fury's closest friends, explaining how they met in Bogotá and wanting to know who was responsible for Fury's death.
Pierce questioned Rogers over why Fury had been in his apartment before they discussed how his home had been bugged, with Pierce noting that it was Fury himself who had done so. Pierce then showed Rogers video footage of Georges Batroc while he was being interrogated and revealed that Fury was secretly responsible for the hijacking of the Lemurian Star, the current theory being that he was attempting to cover up the sale of classified documents.
Attempting to prove his own loyalty to Fury, Pierce told Rogers that he took a seat on the World Security Council because Fury had once asked him to, claiming that they both shared the idea that to build a better world sometimes meant tearing the old one down. Knowing that he could not trust Pierce, Rogers told him nothing of what Fury said, and left him to return to the hospital, despite Pierce's warning that he would not allow anybody to stand in his way.
- "Before we get started, does anyone want to get out?"
- ―Captain America[src]
With his meeting completed, Rogers then got inside the elevator and prepared to leave the Triskelion. Before he could go down, however, Rogers was joined by Brock Rumlow who greeted him and expressed his own condolences for the death of Director Nick Fury, claiming that what had happened was messed up. As they went down, Rumlow noted that forensics had found hair fibers of Fury's possible killer on the rooftop, although Rogers recommended that they wait a bit longer before investigating personally, before the elevator then stopped and collected more some people.
As the elevator slowly began to fill up with even more agents from STRIKE, Rogers quickly sensed that something was wrong. Once Jack Rollins stepped inside with his hand on his weapon, Rogers noted that another agent was sweating as he came to the conclusion that Alexander Pierce had organized an ambush for him for withholding information. Giving them all one chance to leave, Rogers asked if anyone wanted to get out, before the fight began.
Losing all pretense, Rollins and these other agents attacked Rogers, who used his enhanced strength and martial arts training to gain the upper hand. As all of the attackers had successfully managed to disarm Rogers of his shield, they also attempted to use a pair of Magnetic Handcuffs to keep him from fighting back. However, they could only get one on as Rogers was unwilling to give in. Having only one free hand, Rogers fought off his opponents.
Despite Rumlow attempting to use his Taser Rod to subdue him, Rogers managed to break free of the magnetic handcuff and then proceeded to take out two more agents with considerable ease. Eventually, the last conscious double agent was Rumlow, who told Rogers that the fight was not personal. He attacked and managed to shock Rogers with the Taser Rod twice before Rogers disarmed him.
Finally, Rogers landed a hard strike against Rumlow before throwing him into the ceiling and knocking him out, replying that this attack did feel personal. As Rogers then attempted to find a way out of the building to avoid arrest, he discovered more STRIKE agents were coming to capture him, having been sent by Jasper Sitwell. Seemingly trapped, Rogers found that the only clear way out was to cut the elevator cables with his shield.
Once the elevator stopped its free fall, Rogers realized that Sitwell and Pierce had sent agents onto every floor to capture him. He finally threw himself out of the elevator glass and fell several floors through the atrium of the Triskelion and onto the floor, using his shield to absorb the impact. While the horrified S.H.I.E.L.D. looked on, Rogers managed to get back on his feet despite being in considerable pain and then continued trying to escape, all while Sitwell watched this unfold on his monitors and ordered that Rogers be stopped.
With little time left to spare in his escape as Sitwell had just authorized the Triskelion to be locked down, Rogers managed to run to and drive away on the back of his motorcycle, successfully escaping a roadblock set up for him. However, as Rogers rode straight down the bridge, he discovered that Sitwell had sent a Quinjet to stop him. Rogers remained unintimidated however, and instead continued driving straight towards the Quinjet, avoiding all of its gunfire.
Rogers managed to ride right up to the Quinjet before throwing his shield into one of its engines and launching himself onto its roof. From there, he proceeded to damage the Quinjet by throwing his shield at its back wings before leaping off, thus causing the jet to crash-land before Rogers escaped out into Washington, D.C.. In order to keep S.H.I.E.L.D. from tracking him, Rogers hid his uniform inside the duffle bag of a high school coach, whose clothes he took.
Hiding in Plain Sight
Having successfully escaped from the Triskelion ambush, but aware that Jasper Sitwell's agents were hunting him, the now disguised Rogers returned to the hospital, where he realized that the USB was gone from where he had hidden it inside the vending machine. As Rogers was looking for the USB, Natasha Romanoff appeared behind him, revealing that she had already taken it.
Pushing her inside an empty room, Rogers aggressively questioned where the USB was, while Romanoff questioned why Nick Fury had given it to him. Upon being told that Fury indeed hired Georges Batroc to hijack the Lemurian Star, Romanoff confessed to knowing who killed him. She told Rogers that the masked man was an assassin called the Winter Soldier, credited with numerous assassinations in the last 50 years, and she had encountered him once before.
Despite the high risk levels, the pair came to believe that they could still trust each other. Rogers and Romanoff both put on a quick disguise, with Rogers complaining about his shoes being too big for him, and went out in public looking for answers regarding what was happening. While Romanoff gave Rogers tips on going undercover, they then went to an Apple Store and used a laptop to open the USB, searching for any valuable information on it.
While Romanoff hacked into the computer to access the USB drive, they were greeted by Aaron, who enthusiastically offered to help them. Romanoff managed to politely move him away by pretending to be Rogers' fiancée, as Aaron complimented how Rogers' glasses looked on him. With Rogers keeping an eye on the time as they knew S.H.I.E.L.D. would be able to trace the USB, Romanoff eventually triangulated where the drive could be unlocked down to New Jersey. Rogers recognized the coordinates as Camp Lehigh before insisting that they leave.
Upon exiting the store, the two soon realized that STRIKE had already arrived. Rogers prepared to fight the agents but Romanoff instructed him on how to get out of the mall before Jack Rollins could find them. Trying to avoid being detected, Romanoff told Rogers to be intimate with her by holding her close and laughing. Spotting Brock Rumlow coming towards them, she responded by kissing Rogers publicly to deflect Rumlow's attention before they escaped, briefly throwing Rogers off.
Arnim Zola's Confession
Having gotten away from Brock Rumlow's STRIKE team just in time, Rogers and Natasha Romanoff then stole a car and drove to New Jersey. During their trip, Romanoff questioned where Rogers had learned to steal a car and he answered during World War II. She had then teased Rogers about if their kiss had been his first since the 1940s, which he firmly denied.
As they drove along, Rogers and Romanoff began discussing how she managed to hide her true self for so long, resulting in Rogers still not having a clear idea of who Romanoff was despite all of their time working together in both S.H.I.E.L.D. and the Avengers. When she questioned who Rogers wanted her to be, he just told her to be his friend. Romanoff smiled at this and advised Rogers he might be in the wrong business if he was actually looking for friends.
When they finally arrived at Wheaton that evening, Rogers returned to Camp Lehigh, the old training camp where he had once trained during World War II before undergoing Project Rebirth. While he and Romanoff explored the base, Rogers thought back to his days of training as Michael Duffy pushed him during running exercises, which the skinnier Rogers had struggled with. Eventually, he spotted an ammunition hut in the wrong place and went to investigate.
Inside, they found a S.H.I.E.L.D. secret storage room which had been clearly left untouched for decades, with the walls featuring photographs of Howard Stark and Colonel Chester Phillips. Rogers was asked by Romanoff who Peggy Carter was upon seeing a photograph of her as well, which he avoided answering. Moving downstairs inside the facility, they came upon rows of old computers inside a S.H.I.E.L.D. office. There, they found a more modern looking USB slot and placed the drive inside it.
The computers powered up as the voice of an A.I. activated, which recognized Rogers and Romanoff. The voice noted that he and Rogers had previously met back in 1945 before Captain America managed to capture him during World War II. Rogers quickly realized that the voice was that of Red Skull's scientist, Arnim Zola; Zola revealed that his consciousness had been uploaded into a computer before his death in 1972, allowing his own mind to continue living on.
As Rogers listened on in horror, Zola explained to them how he had been recruited by Operation Paperclip after World War II's end, and from his new position as a part of S.H.I.E.L.D., he was able to quietly rebuild HYDRA within the United States. Rogers refused to believe this, but Zola accessed his data files and showed how HYDRA changed strategies following the war and began tricking the entire world into surrendering their own freedoms through decades of their careful manipulation.
While Zola explained that he had been working on an algorithm that HYDRA wanted, he told them that some of the deaths of S.H.I.E.L.D. leaders were due to HYDRA and showed a picture of Howard Stark, implying that his and his wife's fatal car crash might not have been a sudden accident. Hearing and seeing this, Rogers realized that Tony Stark's parents were killed by the Winter Soldier, just like Nick Fury. Zola revealed their goal was to lead to the world into accepting Project Insight to gain peace of mind, claiming this as HYDRA's ultimate victory.
Before Rogers and Romanoff could get any more information out of Zola, they realized that Alexander Pierce had sent a missile to their location. Zola locked them inside and, with seconds to spare, Rogers ripped out the floorboards and pulled Romanoff with him just as the missile blew up the facility. Rogers used his shield to keep the debris from crushing them. He then carried Romanoff out of the rubble and ran to safety just as Brock Rumlow's STRIKE team arrived.
Sam Wilson's Help
Managing to escape from Camp Lehigh's destruction, Rogers and Natasha Romanoff then went to seek refuge. With just a few people they felt they could trust left, Rogers brought them to the home of Sam Wilson. Not wasting any time, he apologized to Wilson and explained that they were looking for somewhere to hide out, before Romanoff noted that everyone they knew was trying to kill them. Wilson allowed them to come in and recover from their ordeal.
As the pair got cleaned up, Rogers spoke to Romanoff and asked if she was okay following what they had learned about S.H.I.E.L.D. and all that had been going on behind the scenes. Romanoff admitted how she had thought she was fighting the good fight by joining S.H.I.E.L.D., but now felt she had just traded the KGB for HYDRA. Romanoff expressed how she now struggled to understand who exactly she had been lying for and whether she was fighting for the wrong side.
Romanoff then noted that Rogers had saved her life and questioned if it had been the other way around, would he have ever trusted her to save his. Rogers assured her that he felt he could following this conversation. Lightening the mood, Romanoff joked that Rogers seemed chipper for the man who just recently learnt he had died for nothing following World War II's conclusion before they were then interrupted by Wilson inviting them to breakfast.
Sitting down to discuss the situation, they agreed that the air-strike would have been ordered by Alexander Pierce, and they would have to find a high-ranking S.H.I.E.L.D./HYDRA agent to learn more. As Rogers and Romanoff realized that Jasper Sitwell was also clearly involved with Pierce's operations, Wilson revealed that he was part of the military project called EXO-7 Falcon, testing of a new form of winged Jet-Packs, and agreed to help Captain America in whatever way he could.
Threatening Jasper Sitwell
The team then traveled back to Washington, D.C. in order to corner and talk to Agent Jasper Sitwell, following their recent discovery that he had been secretly working for HYDRA all along. They waited until Sitwell finished his private meeting with Senator Stern, who whispered “Hail HYDRA” to Sitwell as a sign of his loyalty before saying goodbye. Taking advantage of Sitwell being on his own, Sam Wilson then personally called up Sitwell and forced him up on the roof of a tall building nearby their location, under the threat being shot at by a sniper if he attempted to disobey.
Together with Natasha Romanoff, Rogers had dragged Sitwell onto the roof and demanded that he tell them everything he knew about Arnim Zola's algorithm, although Sitwell denied all knowledge, also denying he had been onboard the Lemurian Star for any reason. When Sitwell pointed out that Rogers was not the kind of man to push him off the roof, Rogers simply handed him over to Romanoff to kick off the edge before Falcon caught Sitwell and brought him back up.
Terrified, Sitwell proceeded to reveal that Zola's algorithm could calculate if a person would be a threat to HYDRA in the future. He also told them that HYDRA was soon going to use Project Insight as a weapon to eliminate everyone who they saw as their opponent, mentioning Tony Stark and Bruce Banner as some of their planned targets along with Stephen Strange. This would also mean that millions of innocent people would die as a result.
The group took Jasper Sitwell into their custody and began driving towards Washington, D.C.. As they drove, Rogers explained his plan to use Sitwell to gain them access to the Triskelion and force him to shut down Project Insight before it had the chance to be activated. Sitwell, however, exclaimed that this was a terrible idea that would never work, though Rogers and the others simply ignored him and continued driving.
However, before they could all reach the Triskelion and continue with their plan, they were attacked by Winter Soldier and his men, who had been seemingly sent by Alexander Pierce. Before the group even had a moment to react, Sitwell was then ripped out of the car and killed by being thrown into traffic. The Winter Soldier then shot into the car and proceeded to rip out the vehicle’s steering wheel, which caused them to lose control and crash the car on the road.
Rogers, however, had saved his allies by kicking open the car door and allowing them to ride it onto the road to relative safety while their car crashed multiple times, leaving them to face the Winter Soldier and his team of HYDRA soldiers who had instructions to kill them all. The battle broke out and Rogers saved Natasha Romanoff when he had managed to block a grenade blast, fired by the Winter Soldier, with his own shield. The subsequent explosion knocked Rogers off the bridge and into an oncoming bus, briefly taking him out of the clash and leaving his allies to fend for themselves against Pierce's soldiers, who immediately began firing upon them without any sense of mercy.
Once Rogers had come to, he was almost immediately fired at by a HYDRA soldier armed with a minigun, but Rogers regained his shield and blocked the bullets before he subdued the soldier while being aided by Sam Wilson, who kept all the soldiers at bay after stealing one of their guns and firing back at them. With the HYDRA mercenaries being dealt with, Rogers then began chasing after the Winter Soldier who was now attempting to assassinate Romanoff.
Rogers soon found Romanoff using her bites to try and defeat the Winter Soldier herself, but she was then shot through the shoulder and defeated. Before she could be executed, Rogers charged in and ambushed the Winter Soldier, blocking a strike from his prosthetic arm with his own shield. Having deflected the punch, Rogers was then kicked off the car roof before being shot at by the Winter Soldier, but he managed to block the shots with his shield.
Winter Soldier proceeded to use every weapon he had available to him to attack Rogers, although he was still unable to get a clean shot as Rogers continued using his shield to defend himself before fighting the Winter Soldier more directly. The Winter Soldier briefly managed to get his hands onto Rogers' shield, which he had proceeded to launch at Rogers before their fight then continued, with the shield becoming embedded in the side of a nearby van.
While they fought, Rogers did everything he could to defend himself while the Winter Soldier drew a blade and then began slashing at Rogers in an attempt to kill him. However, both had quickly proved themselves almost equally matched as neither could land a final hit against the other. As their battle escalated, Rogers managed to get some defensive blows in against his enemy before kicking him into a nearby parked van and attempting to finish the fight.
The pair were forced to resort to hand-to-hand combat as the Winter Soldier had struck back against Captain America, managing to avoid being slammed to the ground before using his bionic arm to attempt to strangle the Captain before then throwing him across a car. Once Captain America was briefly defenseless on the floor, Winter Soldier attempted to finish the job by striking a hard blow but he missed and instead cracked the concrete as Rogers moved out of the way.
Rogers found that the longer the fight went on, the more aggressive Winter Soldier became as he was seemingly incapable of allowing his target to live. As the Winter Soldier continued striking Rogers, he drew another knife before pinning Rogers against a nearby van. Using his robotic arm to give him even more strength, Winter Soldier plunged his knife into the van and tore through the metal, as Rogers avoided the blade and then threw the Winter Soldier off him.
While the Winter Soldier was getting back onto his feet, Rogers was able to reclaim his shield, which was still embedded in the nearby van, as he blocked all of the Winter Soldier's continued strikes with his knife. Despite the Winter Soldier continuing to become more enraged by the fight, Rogers was able to dodge one blow before then embedding his shield into the Winter Soldier's bionic arm, causing serious damage and giving Rogers a clear advantage.
Eventually, Rogers had managed to throw the Winter Soldier over his shoulder which had resulted in his assailant’s mask being ripped from his face, revealing that he was in fact Bucky Barnes. When a horrified Rogers called his name, Winter Soldier replied did not know who that was before attempting to shoot Rogers again. Just then, Falcon kicked Winter Soldier over from mid-air and Romanoff drove him off with the grenade launcher which he had dropped earlier, while Rogers was still left in a shocked silence.
While Rogers was still distracted by the revelation, they were quickly surrounded by Brock Rumlow and his STRIKE agents. Rogers, Romanoff, and Wilson were then arrested by all of Rumlow's men, with Jack Rollins keeping his gun trained on Rogers' skull despite Rumlow ordering him not to kill Rogers there as there were too many cameras. Rogers did not resist as he wondered how Barnes had survived since World War II and was now the Winter Soldier.
Nick Fury's Survival
While in the HYDRA van being driven away by Brock Rumlow to an unknown location in order to execute them, Rogers then discussed how Bucky Barnes had survived since World War II. While they were speaking, one of the HYDRA guards suddenly tased the other and revealed herself to be Maria Hill. She then used a Mouse Hole to help them escape before Rumlow discovered the deception.
Agent Hill took them all to the S.H.I.E.L.D. Dam Facility where they immediately called on Doctor Fine to treat Natasha Romanoff's wounds. Upon their arrival, Hill showed them into the room where Director Nick Fury was resting, revealing that he did not die and had survived with the aid of Fine as well as the use of Bruce Banner's Tetrodotoxin B, though he was still severely injured due to the gunshots through his chest.
The group discussed Alexander Pierce's plans and how HYDRA had used Barnes and Arnim Zola to finally achieve their goals of controlling the world. Hill and Fury told them that Project Insight was only hours away from launching and that they had to act quickly in order to save millions of lives. The Helicarriers would hover in a triangle, connected, locking on all of their targets before firing. The only way to prevent this would be to use three special chips that would take away S.H.I.E.L.D.'s control of the Helicarriers. Rogers then demanded that they also destroy S.H.I.E.L.D. in this mission as he blamed them for the disaster, which Fury eventually agreed to.
Stepping outside, Rogers thought back to living in Brooklyn shortly after his mother had died, and how Barnes had been there for him at that time. Rogers was then joined by Sam Wilson, who reminded Rogers that when they went into the mission, Barnes would be there waiting for them as Winter Soldier and Rogers would need to stop him. Rogers insisted he could still save his friend despite Wilson’s warning that he may not have any choice with that.
Rogers told Wilson to collect his EXO-7 Falcon to be ready for their mission, noting that if they were to fight in a war then they would need to have a uniform. Having lost his suit earlier in order to avoid detection, Rogers broke into the Smithsonian Institution museum and stole his suit from World War II. After which, the group went off to stop Project Insight, arriving just outside of the Triskelion in order to complete their mission and save humanity’s freedom.
- "I know I'm asking a lot. But the price of freedom is high, it always has been. And it's a price I'm willing to pay. And if I'm the only one, then so be it. But I'm willing to bet I'm not."
- ―Captain America[src]
With both Sam Wilson and Maria Hill by his side, Captain America then successfully broke into the Triskelion, all while Black Widow was infiltrating a meeting with the World Security Council by using the Photostatic Veil to disguise herself as Pamela Hawley. In the meantime, Captain America managed to take over the control room with ease by banging on the door and waiting for Agent Moore to investigate before finding himself being held at gunpoint by the three heroes.
Rogers used the PA system to send out his message across the base and inform the S.H.I.E.L.D. agents listening of HYDRA's infiltration within their organization, and that Alexander Pierce was their leader, with Brock Rumlow's STRIKE unit also being HYDRA. Rogers told everyone that HYDRA was responsible for Director Nick Fury's apparent assassination and that they could not allow the HYDRA to initiate Project Insight, before asking them to stand with him.
Once he had finished his speech, Captain America and Falcon prepared to assault the Helicarriers and battle all the HYDRA agents on board to ensure they could not complete Pierce's plan to use Arnim Zola's algorithm to murder several million people across the world, which included their fellow Avengers. While they ran towards the Helicarriers, which were just beginning to launch, Falcon questioned how they would be able to tell the good guys from the bad guys as everyone appeared to be S.H.I.E.L.D. agents, before Captain America simply told him to look for the agents shooting at them. With that, Wilson used his EXO-7 Falcon to fly up overhead and battle the Quinjets which were now being sent to kill them.
While Falcon flew overhead, Captain America leaped onto a nearby launching Helicarrier where he had charged towards all the HYDRA agents who had been sent to stop him. Without breaking his pace, Captain America avoided the gunfire while using his shield and his own superior skills to strike back against his enemies. While he was fighting, Hill reminded Rogers that they only had eight minutes left in order to complete their infiltration mission.
Having managed to take out the HYDRA agents on the Helicarrier, Captain America ran into the main weapons center where he then inserted the chip which would allow them to force the three Helicarriers to target each other. Hill then confirmed with Wilson that they had managed to insert two of the chips, with some hardship, leaving just one more to be inserted in order to fully thwart Project Insight and save millions of innocent lives from HYDRA.
Although he had successfully placed their computer chip, Captain America was soon discovered by all the remaining HYDRA agents on board the Helicarrier who began firing at him. With little time to spare, Captain America requested Falcon's help as he leaped from the Helicarrier and plummeted towards Washington, D.C. several hundred feet below. Falcon managed to catch up in time and pulled Captain America all the way back up to the third and final Helicarrier.
However, before they could enter the Helicarrier, the pair were ambushed by Winter Soldier who pushed Captain America overboard and damaged Falcon's wing suit before also kicking him overboard. Wilson fell back to the Triskelion, where he got caught up in a fistfight with Agent Rumlow, while Rogers nearly fell to his death, but he was able to hang onto the Helicarrier. Now it was all on Rogers to complete the plan and defeat HYDRA.
Duel in the Helicarrier
Captain America entered the Helicarrier in order to put their final chip in place before he was confronted by Winter Soldier, who stood firmly in his way. Rogers desperately begged Barnes to listen to him, noting that Project Insight would soon kill millions of innocent lives. However, Rogers saw that Barnes was simply not going to listen to reason and, running out of time, Captain America then steeled himself for what must be done in order to complete his current mission.
Despite what Rogers wanted, the two former friends fought violently against each other, as Captain America began the fight by launching his shield at the Winter Soldier, which his opponent blocked with his bionic arm before they began their struggle. Rogers used his shield to block all the Winter Soldier's gunshots before then disarming him and attempting to keep him away while he rearmed the Helicarrier.
The pair then battled each other over control of the chip; the Winter Soldier responded by throwing Captain America off the ledge before they continued their fight, with Rogers desperately attempting to keep the chip safe from harm. In his attempt to win their fight, the Winter Soldier launched Rogers' shield at him, before firing at him again, which Rogers managed to block with his shield before launching his shield back at the Winter Soldier who used his arm to block the blow.
Following a long and brutal battle between the pair where the Winter Soldier attempted to kill his target while Captain America tried to emotionally reach him, the Winter Soldier managed to get his hands on the chip, before Captain America had put him into a tight chokehold and demanded that he drop it. Captain America finally managed to subdue the Winter Soldier, by choking him out until the Soldier lost consciousness and dropped the chip.
Rogers attempted to get the chip into place with only seconds left before Project Insight would initiate. However, he was shot multiple times by the Winter Solider, with one bullet that went through his stomach. Using whatever energy he had left, Rogers managed to get the chip in place just in time, allowing Maria Hill to gain control of the Helicarriers. Before making them fire on each other, Hill had acknowledged that Rogers was still on board, but he commanded her to do it anyway.
With Rogers still on board, their mission went ahead exactly as they had planned, with all of Alexander Pierce's Helicarriers firing at one another. The Helicarrier that Rogers and Barnes were in was the last one remaining while the other two were blown out of the sky. Their Helicarrier crashed into the Triskelion, causing it to collapse and crush Brock Rumlow under the debris. As the Helicarrier had still continued to fall, some debris landed on Barnes, trapping him against the glass windows.
Running to his friend's aid, Rogers had freed the trapped Winter Soldier who immediately betrayed him, despite Rogers insisting that the Winter Soldier did indeed know who he was. Rogers desperately tried to remind the Soldier that his name was James Buchanan Barnes, telling him of their friendship in the 1940s. While the Winter Soldier now attacking Captain America, Rogers still refused to fight Barnes, dropping his shield and allowing Barnes to secure an easy victory.
Refusing to accept the truth about his past, the Winter Soldier began to savagely beat Rogers with his metal arm, determined to complete his mission to kill Captain America for HYDRA. Before Rogers had lost consciousness from the brutal assault, he promised Barnes to be with him until the end of the line; a promise Barnes once gave him decades ago in 1936 following Sarah Rogers' funeral. This caused Barnes to realize what he was doing to his long-time friend.
However, just as Barnes came back to his senses and stopped his attacks, a large piece of debris fell and caused the floor to collapse underneath them. The unconscious Rogers then fell into the Potomac River below and nearly drowned, but Barnes decided to not leave his old friend to die and dived in, saving him. Barnes then dragged Rogers back to the shore and walked away, leaving Rogers to be found by the authorities while Barnes had then disappeared.
Search for the Winter Soldier
Rogers eventually woke up sometime following the Battle at the Triskelion in a hospital, finding Sam Wilson at his bedside and calling out "on your left" again. Wilson then filled Rogers in on what had happened after he was found; S.H.I.E.L.D. had gone through some major changes, having been dismantled as a result of the HYDRA Uprising. Having successfully killed Alexander Pierce during the battle, Nick Fury was officially dead, and he had destroyed all evidence of his survival.
Later, standing by his headstone, Fury ordered Rogers to tell anyone who asked that he was dead as he left to thwart HYDRA operations in Europe. Meanwhile, Natasha Romanoff went to a Senate hearing to defend their actions, proclaiming that they could not arrest the Avengers because the team is the best qualified to protect the world. After Romanoff gave him a file on Bucky Barnes, Rogers decided to start looking, with the help of Wilson, for his friend so that he could convince Barnes of who he really was and save him.
- "Baron Strucker. HYDRA's number one thug."
"Technically, I'm a thug for S.H.I.E.L.D."
"Well then, technically, you're unemployed. Where's Loki's Scepter?"
"I know when I'm beat. You'll mention how I cooperated, I hope."
"I'll put it right under illegal human experimentation."
- ―Captain America and Baron Strucker[src]
As Rogers continued his search for Bucky Barnes, the continued threat of HYDRA still endured, causing the Avengers to reassemble in bring an end to the terrorist organization. During one mission, the Avengers helped Black Widow fight Jensen whose soldiers were enhanced with HYDRA Exo-Suits. Eventually, Rogers led the Avengers in an assault on Baron Strucker's base, having learned that Strucker was using the Scepter to create an army of his own enhanced soldiers for HYDRA to use against their enemies.
Rogers rode his motorcycle into their battle against Strucker's soldiers, throwing his shield at the HYDRA soldiers while commanding the Avengers' actions. When Iron Man cussed while trying to break through the base's defense systems during the battle, Rogers told him to mind his language, much to Stark's amusement, while Rogers checked with J.A.R.V.I.S. about Strucker's technology and the defense systems the base currently had in place.
While Rogers defended calling Stark out on his language, he then threw his motorcycle at another HYDRA convoy. When they realized Strucker's guns were targeting the innocent people of Sokovia, Stark then sent the Iron Legion to protect the people. Rogers ignored the continuing teases and fought alongside Thor, using their combined strength to destroy the HYDRA Tanks, also jokingly commenting that it had seemed like the soldiers were lining up to be defeated.
During the continuing battle, Hawkeye was injured when he had been suddenly attacked by Pietro Maximoff and then took a shot from one of Strucker's bunkers. Captain America himself was also then briefly attacked by Maximoff, who he noted was too fast for him to even see and warned the other Avengers. With little time to spare, Rogers had ordered Thor to take Hawkeye onto the Avengers' Quinjet to receive treatment while they continued the assault on Strucker's base.
Once Iron Man had successfully destroyed their defenses, Captain America broke into the HYDRA Research Base and began searching for Loki's Scepter. During his search, Rogers was informed by Black Widow that the battle had been one, as Rogers ordered her to collect Hulk and return him back to Bruce Banner. Before long, Rogers located Baron Strucker who immediately surrendered to him, knowing that he did not stand a chance for victory.
During his confrontation with Baron Strucker, Rogers was then attacked by Scarlet Witch who used her powers to throw Rogers down a flight of stairs before making her own escape. Rogers quickly recovered from the attack and knocked out Strucker by hitting him with his shield, and took him into their custody while all of the rest of the Avengers had successfully defeated the remaining HYDRA army and Tony Stark found the Scepter inside Strucker's laboratory.
Return to Base
With the mission a success and HYDRA officially defeated, Rogers with the other Avengers flew back on the Quinjet, with Rogers still checking in while Clint Barton and Bruce Banner recovered from their experiences during the battle. Along the way, Rogers and his own allies had observed the Scepter and commented on their victory over HYDRA.
Pleased to have finally ended their search for Loki's Scepter while also having a major victory over HYDRA, Tony Stark then requested to Thor that he be allowed to keep the Scepter under observation for a few days to study it before it was returned to Asgard, also noting they should have a party to celebrate their victory. Thor then agreed to keep the Scepter on Earth, and Rogers also agreed that a party to celebrate the successful defeat of HYDRA was a good idea.
Once they had arrived back at the Avengers Tower, the team was greeted by Maria Hill. While Helen Cho took Barton away to receive treatment following his injury, Hill briefed Rogers on the twins they had all encountered, who had been identified as Wanda and Pietro Maximoff. She explained their poverty while living in Sokovia and how they lost their parents, which had led to them both volunteering for Baron Strucker's enhancement experiments.
When Hill called the Maximoff's decision to be experimented on by Strucker insane, Rogers expressed his understanding of the twins' decision, comparing his own decision to allow a German scientist to experiment on him, referring to Abraham Erskine's Project Rebirth. When Hill noted that they were not fighting in World War II like he was in the 1940s, Rogers argued that from the Maximoff's point of view, they were still in their own war before heading downstairs.
Rogers joined the Avengers, plus Sam Wilson and James Rhodes, at a party in Avengers Tower to celebrate their victory over HYDRA. Rogers and Wilson discussed working together and their continued search for Bucky Barnes. When Rogers suggested Wilson could join the Avengers, Wilson claimed not to be interested in joining. They went on to discuss Rogers finding himself a house in Brooklyn.
Later, Rogers and Thor drank thousand-year-old alcohol from Asgard with a group of World War II veterans. Although Thor deemed only himself and the Super-Soldier Rogers to be strong enough to drink the powerful alcohol, one of the Veterans insisted upon having a drink of the Asgardian alcohol. Thor relented with Rogers' nod of approval which resulted in the man having to be carried away from Avengers Tower for instantaneously becoming too drunk.
While the party had still continued, Rogers went to the bar and came across Bruce Banner speaking to Natasha Romanoff, with Romanoff clearly flirting with the nervous Banner. When Romanoff left, Rogers spoke to Banner, telling him that Romanoff was clearly attracted to him and noting how Romanoff was usually much more closed off but seemed highly relaxed around him, although Banner had still insisted that Romanoff was merely enjoying have a flirt with him.
Rogers insisted that as he knew what it was like to leave a love too long, and therefore Banner should not let the chance for a happy life go past, noting that he had been flirted with by Romanoff in the past while they worked as S.H.I.E.L.D. agents and the way she spoke to Banner was more than mere flirting. As Rogers walked away, Banner pondered this before questioning exactly what Rogers meant when he had claimed that Romanoff had flirted with him in the past.
Once most of the guests had finally returned home from the party, the group, joined by Helen Cho, took turns attempting to lift Mjølnir. Leading the attempts was Clint Barton who was the first to try and when he failed, both Tony Stark and James Rhodes tried using Iron Man Gauntlets but still failed to even make the hammer move an inch, much to the great amusement of Thor who continued pushing the other Avengers to try out their luck during their game.
When Rogers finally stepped up and attempted to lift Mjølnir, he was able to briefly nudge the hammer, much to Thor's surprise, but in the end, he was still unsuccessful. Ultimately, Stark had suggested that the hammer was actually imprinted with Thor's fingerprints and was not enchanted by Odin with Asgardian Magic as Thor claimed, but Thor simply insisted that none of them were worthy enough, causing all the others to mockingly boo him for his egotistical claims. Unknown to Thor, Rogers was actually deemed worthy of Mjølnir from that point onwards upon touching the hammer, but he secretly chose to not lift it to be polite as that would have made Thor feel "less special."
The party was interrupted when a loud noise rang through the room before broken down robot stepped forward, calling itself Ultron. The robot claimed that all the Avengers could never be worthy, as they were all killers who wanted to protect the world, but not allow it to change. Ultron then claimed to have killed someone to get to them but had refused to tell Rogers whom he had actually killed.
Announcing that the only path to peace on Earth was the Avengers' deaths, Ultron and some hijacked Iron Legion drones attacked the group, proclaiming humanity inferior and ready for extinction. Rogers and the rest of the group engaged in a violent battle with Ultron, with Rogers kicking over the table to block an incoming drone which was flying directly for him and Maria Hill, although Rogers was still thrown across the room as the drone had crashed straight into him.
Leaping onto a flying drone's back, Rogers used his strength to pull the drones apart with his bare hands before he could shoot at Bruce Banner and Natasha Romanoff. During the clash, Rogers was thrown across the room and smashed into walls until he was thrown to the ground. Seeing another drone about to shoot Helen Cho, Rogers had immediately ran straight to Cho's aid and then proceeded to throw the drone back towards Thor who smashed it apart.
With one of the final drones being dispatched by Tony Stark, Rogers was then thrown his shield by Clint Barton and destroyed the final drone with it. With the Avengers coming out victorious, Ultron then continued to rant about his desire to destroy the Avengers to bring peace to the entire planet, before his first robotic form was then completely destroyed by Mjølnir. However, Ultron's mind had still managed to escape by accessing through the internet.
As the team regrouped following the Attack on Avengers Tower, they discussed what had occurred, as Bruce Banner explained that Ultron had cleared out their computer files before escaping through the internet. When James Rhodes discussed the fear of Ultron getting into America's nuclear codes, it was mentioned that Ultron had claimed to have killed somebody, although they still did not know who.
However, Tony Stark revealed that J.A.R.V.I.S. was the one that Ultron killed, as Rogers noted that J.A.R.V.I.S. was Ultron first threat to be destroyed. Stark admitted his own involvement in Ultron's creation; although he still strongly defended the idea as he had believed it was a beneficial plan to save the entire world. Thor, furious at all Stark's recklessness which caused Loki's Scepter to be lost, stepped in and grabbed Stark by the throat until Rogers had calmed him down.
Thor had confirmed that he had lost track of the Drone and Scepter's location before Helen Cho questioned by Ultron was trying to kill him as Rogers watch Stark trying to defend his actions, with Rogers then comparing Stark's actions with S.H.I.E.L.D.'s. Stark explained there was a war coming, and not just the one against Ultron but another one coming that they were not ready for, but Rogers had insisted that they would fight and die together as a team regardless.
As the hunt for Ultron continued, Rogers spoke to Maria Hill shortly afterward and was told that Ultron's attempts to launch the country's nuclear missiles had been stopped by a mysterious ally. Rogers was also informed about the survivors of Ultron's attacks were suffering from visions from their past and had claimed to have also encountered something faster than they could see, realizing that Ultron had allied himself with Wanda and Pietro Maximoff to build up his strength.
The team had later learned that Ultron had sent a message directly to them by brutally murdering Baron Strucker, the former leader of HYDRA while he was still locked inside of his prison cell, leaving the word "PEACE" written with Strucker's blood on the walls. Rogers collected Clint Barton to hear the new update while Barton had claimed to have been talking to his girlfriend on the phone before coming to join the rest of the Avengers in their discussion.
The Avengers soon learned that Ultron had wiped out their computer files on Baron Strucker to ensure that they had no leads on where to track him next. Together, they then went through all of their former paperwork from S.H.I.E.L.D. and had eventually discovered that Ultron would likely be going after the vibranium which he would get from Ulysses Klaue, who was in Johannesburg, who Stark previously had met, as the Avengers then departed to find Ultron.
The Avengers traveled to Ulysses Klaue's location where they had soon found Ultron along with Pietro and Wanda Maximoff, the two powered twins who had attacked the team earlier. The Avengers learned that Ultron had already purchased all of the now injured Klaue's vibranium. Rogers attempted to gain the Maximoff's trust but they seemed to have no interest in siding with the Avengers and Ultron had mocked Rogers by calling him God's righteous man.
When Thor's peace negotiations quickly failed, the team engaged in a fierce fight with Ultron, the Maximoff twins, and Klaue's soldiers. While Iron Man and Ultron fought over the skyline, Captain America and Thor teamed up to destroy many of the Ultron Sentries while they were assisted by Black Widow and Hawkeye who then fought against Klaue's soldiers. The Maximoffs proved fierce opponents as they were both able to knock Rogers to the ground separately.
Despite the numbers being against them, Captain America were able to gain the advantage over their foes, while Thor had used Mjølnir to trick Quicksilver into attempting to grab ahold of it, causing him to be thrown across the Salvage Yard as he was unworthy to lift it. Captain America and Thor had then teamed up to destroy the last few Ultron Sentries, with Captain America trapping one during the fight before Thor smashed off it's head with a powerful strike from Mjølnir.
Eventually, while Iron Man still continued fighting Ultron in the skies above Johannesburg, Captain America used his shield to known out several more of the remaining Klaue soldiers before he was then able to knock Pietro Maximoff to the ground with another strong hit from his shield, ordering him to stay down. While the Avengers were still fighting against their enemies, however, the vibranium was still stolen by another of Ultron's Sentries who managed to escape.
However, just as their Battle at the Salvage Yard was coming to its end, Captain America took a hit by Pietro Maximoff who charged straight into Rogers at full speed which then knocked him back. While Rogers recovered from the strike, Scarlet Witch had taken advantage of him before injured and then proceeded to use her powers to affect Rogers' mind and make him see strange visions.
No longer seeing himself in the Salvage Yard fighting alongside his allies, Rogers then saw strange images of the life he almost could have had with both his former comrades celebrating their own final victory, and Agent Peggy Carter following the final ending of World War II, if he had not been frozen within ice for almost seventy years following his final battle against Red Skull, resulting in him becoming trapped in this new world he had never fully adjusted to.
Rogers saw himself in a ballroom in the 1940s when Agent Carter approached him and told him he could finally stop fighting. When he turned around, however, everyone had vanished and Rogers stood alone. The tactic was used in an attempt to break Rogers' heart when confronted by his tragic situation. Meanwhile, Thor and Black Widow were also given similar visions until Hawkeye had subdued Scarlet Witch and forced her and Quicksilver to escape.
With most of the Avengers suffered from these strange and painful visions, and Iron Man fought the deranged Hulk in Johannesburg, the team decided to escape. While still on board the Quinjet, they were updated by Maria Hill on the public's perception of the Avengers in the wake of Hulk's destructive rampage. As Rogers, Romanoff and Thor tried to cope with what they had seen, Barton made the call for them to hide out at his homestead where they could rest up.
Escape to the Retreat
When the team had arrived at Clint Barton's Homestead where they intended to recover from their ordeals, they discovered, much to their great surprise that Clint Barton was in fact married with two children and one more on the way. While Rogers apologized to coming to their home unexpectedly, Barton had explained that the reason the team had been unaware of his family was due to Director Nick Fury helping him to have this second peaceful life outside of S.H.I.E.L.D. where his family could be safe from any of Barton's enemies.
Once introductions had been made, Thor informed the team that he intended to try and learn more about the vision he had been given which had showed him the possible Destruction of Asgard as well as images of the Infinity Stones. While Rogers had stepped out with him, Thor then immediately left the farm to look for the answers he needed, while Rogers stood outside of the doorway, haunted by the idea of a peaceful life with a family which he could never have.
Attempting to relax, Rogers and Tony Stark went outside together and chopped wood. They discussed how Scarlet Witch had been able to use her powers to pull their team apart with ease, although Stark questioned why Rogers had seemed less affected. When the conversation moved onto how Stark and Bruce Banner inadvertently creating Ultron, they began to argue and debate whether or not Stark should have experimented on the Scepter, causing the disaster.
Stark argued that he and Banner were doing research into Ultron with the intention of ending the need for the Avengers, still insisting that the Ultron Program was originally designed to protect the Earth. As the argument became more intense, Rogers ripped a log in half with his bare hands before Rogers then told Stark that trying to end wars before they start results in the deaths of innocent people. They were then interrupted by Laura Barton who asked for Stark's help.
Nick Fury's Return
The team was later joined by Nick Fury who had come there in order to motivate the Avengers them restart their fight. Fury then explained that Ultron had pulled the team apart in order to buy himself time, noting that the amount of vibranium he had taken from Ulysses Klaue was unlikely to be used for one thing. As Rogers questioned where Ultron was, Fury noted that Ultron's attempts to get America's nuclear launch codes were being stopped by an unknown enemy of Ultron.
Motivating the team, Fury noted that without S.H.I.E.L.D. to support them, they now only had their wit and their will to save the world but must stand and fight, and when Fury insulted Ultron, calling him a Platinum Bastard, Natasha Romanoff teased Rogers by joking about his dislike for bad language. Bruce Banner worked out that Ultron's plan would be to create another body made of synthetic tissue using the Regeneration Cradle, and would likely do this with Helen Cho's assistance.
Rogers spoke to Tony Stark, who was planning on going straight to the NEXUS to investigate who was assisting their fight against Ultron. They discussed the being Ultron was now planning on building, with Rogers joking that he missed the days when the weirdest thing science ever created was himself with Project Rebirth. Fury then left the Homestead and also requested the help of Maria Hill from Stark, promising that he would be back to do something dramatic.
The team tracked down Ultron at Helen Cho's own Facility within the city of Seoul, where Ultron was still attempting to complete his plans to build himself a new body using the vibranium which he had previously taken from Ulysses Klaue. Having been dropped off from the Quinjet, Rogers ordered his teammates to stay close while he personally investigated.
When Rogers entered the lab, he soon found Cho lying injured on the floor after being shot by Ultron. Cho then explained to him that the being inside the Regeneration Cradle had a Powerful Gem on its head, which could not be destroyed without then creating a massive explosion which could destroy all of Seoul. Cho then recommended that they recover the body and bring it to Tony Stark, so Captain America then went to find and capture the being before Ultron could then escape.
Having warned all of the Avengers of this potential danger, Captain America was informed by Hawkeye of Ultron's current location with the Cradle beside him. As Ultron attempted to escape in the truck, Captain America engaged him and they began an intense battle in with Ultron fired his concussion beams at Rogers and had demanded that he leave him alone, although Rogers still managed to remain on top of the truck despite all of Ultron's best efforts.
Ultron then flew up and personally confronted Captain America while insisting that the being in the Cradle could create real change which was the Avengers' nightmare. Noting that Ultron's concept was not exactly a comfort for him, Captain America then engaged him and repeatedly threw his shield at Ultron, even managing to embed it in Ultron's chest, but the robot was able to knock it away and shot at Rogers once again, almost knocking him off the truck.
As Ultron gained the upper hand in their fight due to the robot's own immense strength and durability, he soon began to strangle Captain America until Natasha Romanoff caught up with them while on her Motorbike and threw Rogers his shield back which he used to knock Ultron's hand back before continuing to battle the robot. To assist him in the battle, the Quinjet being flown by Hawkeye had fired down a hail of bullets upon Ultron in order to briefly distract him.
As they continued their clash on top of the moving truck, Ultron sent several of his Sentries after Hawkeye while trying to destroy Captain America. Eventually, both Rogers and Ultron were thrown onto a train and continued their fight, with Black Widow asking Rogers to keep Ultron distracted. However, Rogers was helped by Pietro and Wanda Maximoff who had betrayed Ultron after learning Ultron's schemes to eradicate all human life and could no longer be a part it.
Seeing that he was outnumbered by both Captain America and the Maximoffs, who knocked Ultron off Rogers and trapped him with steel beams, Ultron responded by destroying the controls of the train and escaped before they could stop him. Upon seeing this, Captain America ordered the Maximoffs to assist him in finding a way to stop the train; he then sent Quicksilver to move all of the people out of the way while Scarlet Witch used her powers to stop the train.
Standing in the front of the train, Rogers had watched as Quicksilver saved several lives while Maximoff used her powers to trap the train's wheels. Although he had to use his shield to deflect some debris, eventually, the train was stopped. By the end of the battle and have saved hundreds of lives from the train crash, the Avengers took control of the Regeneration Cradle with the being still inside it, but Romanoff was taken prisoner by Ultron during the chaos of the battle.