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How Not To Build A Jetpack

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Two am, and most of the team had ended up around the kitchen table, drinking. Even Steve was there, leaning against the counter, watching them with a tolerant expression, halfway down his second beer, which if Tony remembered his physiology correctly - which he did, of course, because he was a genius even if he wasn't a biochemist, unlike the Pyms, who were sitting at opposite ends of the table, staring at each other like cats - anyway, even though he hadn't studied Steve's physiology as extensively as the Pyms - especially not Jan.

Jan, who had by all accounts carried out extensive personal research into Steve's physiology, although Tony was of the opinion that the rumour about her hooking him up to monitors before sex was just that, a vile calumny which -

Well, not that there wasn't a certain appeal to the thought of being able to hear the speeding beeps of a heart monitor, perhaps the scratch of one of those old fashioned ECGs with the rolls of paper, everything speeding with the rise of arousal -

The point was, Steve wasn't getting drunk on two beers. Probably saving the lecture for the morning meeting, and their hangovers. Or maybe collecting valuable tactical information on them for later use.

Thor had attempted to coax them into singing, but had been firmly outvoted, and they were playing I Never . Which was why Tony was utterly wasted, because he'd led an exciting life even before he'd been given the prognosis that led him to live life right to the edge.

"Pietro?" Wanda was trying to lift her brother from the table. "Are you awake?" Her words were careful, but her accent had strengthened considerably. Tony leaned around her to help him up, letting his hand drift over the smooth bare plane of her shoulder. She was definitely a woman who knew how to dress. Keeping that stuff on was practically a performance art; Tony'd never seen her have a nipple slip, and he'd been watching.

She cast him a slightly cross-eyed flirtatious glance, and Pietro, apparently sensing the encroachment on his territory, shot upright. The narrow-eyed glare was probably not funny, but Tony snickered anyway, and let his fingers comb through a few stray brown curls on his way back.

"Your go, Pietro," Wanda said softly, and Pietro's eyes fixed on her face.

"Okay," he blinked round the table, hazy. "I never... I've never slept with a man."

Everyone drank, except Tony, who put his glass down with a little click. There was a slow, gradual focusing of attention on him, and his full glass. It appeared the day had arrived when he could shock people with his lack of experience. He spread his hands, and smiled.

"Really, Tony?" Jan was listing slightly, leaning into Clint's space. "Didn't you even do any college experimentation?"

"Yes, I built a jetpack," he said dryly, and Wanda hiccuped a laugh. "Sorry to disappoint you all."

"Why would he? He can always get girls," Hank said, and Clint snorted.

"Not everyone sleeps with guys out of desperation, Hank." Tony nodded agreeably; at the point at which you were desperate for sex, you should probably just stay home with your hand. Of course, Tony never had run out of lovely women willing to go to bed with him, whereas by all accounts Pym had been a walking disaster of a hippy, and how he'd managed to snare in Jan was a mystery. To such an extent she was willing to play fast and loose with Captain America for him, too. Maybe he had secret mind control powers. Were there mind-control ants? No, mind-controlled ants, there was some kind of fungus that -

Tony blinked, and found himself still the centre of attention. He searched for a quip to play it off; it wouldn't be up to his usual standard, but everyone but Steve was so drunk - ah, Steve.

"Well, Pietro and I - and Steve - " Tony fluttered his fingers in a little wave, and Steve arched his eyebrows, "Will just have to stick with being the boring ones in this team."

Steve's expression was very curious; Tony stared, trying to decipher it. Doubt, indecision, and then breaking amusement as he opened his mouth -

"Sorry, Tony, but you and Pietro are on your own."


The party broke up after Clint got drunk enough to declare he'd never slept with a member of his immediate family; with the kind of team reflexes you only saw in long-standing couples, Hank and Jan both took their shots and started an argument about whether a spouse counted. Tony left his glass on the table, and raised an eyebrow at Thor as he tossed back his drink.

"We're not as bad as the Greek pantheon," said Thor cheerfully. "But a blood brother is immediate family." That was - Tony filed that away for later consideration. "Anyway, I think perhaps it is time for the party to end." He put a big hand on Clint's shoulder, and hauled him out of his chair. Wanda and Pietro had already scuttled out the door - Wanda had been sober enough to support her brother, the poor girl had never even used a vibrator, which made Tony long to educate her - and Hank and Jan exchanged glances before leaving the kitchen through different doors. A pretty laughable attempt at subterfuge, and by Steve's twisted mouth, he thought so too. He said nothing; just started tidying up.

Tony got to his feet and slumped against the counter where he could see Steve's profile, and watched him as he began rinsing out glasses. Having the 'servants' conversation with him would likely end in a lecture; if Captain America was hell-bent on washing up, let him. It gave Tony a chance to discuss the interesting topic that had been brought up earlier. Steve had achieved total annihilation of the conversation; there had been a silent minute of staring before Thor refilled his glass and declared he'd never slept with a woman taller than him.

He considered and discarded a couple of gambits. Steve was surprisingly adept at steering conversations when he wanted to, if necessary by simply ignoring what was said and telling war stories, so the best approach was direct.

"Really, Steve? Or were you just saying that to get a rise?" Steve didn't pretend to misunderstand, and he didn't look at all discomfited.

"Sometimes I spent weeks without even seeing a woman. Friends with benefits is not a new idea."

"I didn't know you read Cosmopolitan ," and Tony rolled his eyes at Steve's frown. "I'm accusing you of metrosexuality due to your use of -"

"Metro-what?"

"All right, never mind, your education in the hip modern slang is clearly far from complete. I feel much better. Friends with benefits, heavens above." Tony finished his drink, and put the glass down. "But really?"

Steve reached past him for the glass, and his glance slid down over Tony's body. Not obvious, but... definitely there. Well. It was an almost automatic response to drop his lashes, look up through them, and he saw the flirtation register in Steve's eyes. Steve was - well, of course he was good-looking, Tony wasn't blind. And the power and grace in his body, the magnificent arrogance in every movement, was something Tony had noticed time and again, had envied. He moved like Tony thought, swift and accurate and instinctive, never second-guessing himself.

But he'd probably be awkward in bed, not much experience and half of that in a time where turning the lights on during sex was slightly risque. He'd fumble and scowl, and fantastic though his face and body were, if they hadn't been enough to keep Jan then they were hardly going to hold Tony's interest for long.

Of course, Jan loved Hank, so her taste was hardly something to judge by. If Steve was as instinctively physical, as responsive, in bed as he was in a fight...

"Don't believe me?" Steve's voice was not quite neutral. He put the glass down, and wiped his hands dry. Tony's heart rate jumped, and he could feel a very pleasant tension creeping through his body. Steve was big; just one of those hands could encompass his skull, and the bulk of his shoulders was as wide as the armour. Steve's intense blue gaze settled on him, waiting, and Tony wondered what he'd look like when Tony touched him. Curiosity had always been his besetting sin.

"Convince me," Tony said.

One long step, and Steve rested his hands on the counter either side of Tony and looked down at him, only a slight softness at the corners of eyes and mouth tempering his stern expression.

"Stand up straight," he said, and Tony pushed himself upright, eyes almost level with Steve's. Steve only had to incline his head a little for their lips to touch, barely there, and Tony let his tongue dart out. Steve's breathing caught as Tony licked delicately at his lips, licked them apart and pressed in. He tasted of beer, and his skin was astonishingly soft, and he didn't have any stubble that Tony could feel. All in all, it was a lot like kissing a very tall woman, and Tony knew exactly how to do that.

Steve put a hand up and cupped his head, held him still for a deeper kiss, and as his tongue slid smoothly against Tony's, Tony started to laugh, and pulled away to clap his hand over his mouth. He didn't want to wake the house with his cackling.

"What's so funny?" Steve's brows lowered in suspicion, and Tony grinned at him, brushed a hand through his hair and watched him lean into the touch.

"I was just remembering being a kid, with the Captain America trading cards... and years later, here I am making out with him in the kitchen. You never know where life will take you, Cap." Steve wasn't quite smiling. His hands stroked Tony's neck, shaped round the curve of his shoulders, and he looked at Tony with something approaching fondness.

"You're telling me?" and Tony laughed again. Steve's hands trailed down his back, pressed him closer, and he could feel Steve's... interest. "Will you let it take you upstairs?"

"And in this metaphor, you'll be playing the part of life?" Steve kissed him again, the slow stroke of his tongue surprisingly dirty, and Tony's breath caught. This was a new part of Steve, something new to play with, and Tony was very willing to play. "Oh, sure. I mean, why the hell not? It beats being on Team Incest."


"All right, I'm duly impressed. Is that a side effect of Project Rebirth?" Tony had expected Steve to be on the large side - his pants left little to the imagination - but that was bordering on ridiculous. Steve looked faintly annoyed; Tony rather thought he'd deliberately left taking off his shorts until the last possible second. Not that Tony would baulk at bolting naked through his own house if the moment demanded it, but Steve was straddling his thighs, pinning him to the bed in a way that would make escape tricky.

"Everything got bigger," Steve said in final tones.

"Right, and what exactly do you plan on doing with it?" Tony spread a hand out against Steve's cock, and Steve's hips jerked. "I mean, I hate to sound like a bashful innocent, but that's not going to fit without an industrial lubricant and maybe a crowbar."

"You're an engineer, I'm sure you can figure something out." Steve was giving him the squinty look of disapproval, and it looked much more appealing in this context; Tony leaned forward to nip his lower lip, and the scowl softened into a sultry look. Well, that was a very good trick.

"Sure, I'll just fetch my little hacksaw and lop a bit off." He nipped again, more sharply, and wrapped his hand round Steve's cock, dragging his thumb over the head. Steve's lips parted, an almost silent gasp escaping. "You like that?"

Steve made a soft sound that Tony translated as yes please, but more obvious was the way his back arched, rubbing himself against Tony without a hint of embarrassment. Colour was already building in his cheeks, and the head of his dick was slick and wet. Steve was easy, Tony noted with amusement, everything but pleasure cleared from his face as Tony's hand moved on him.

Unless Project Rebirth had entirely rewired his brain, it shouldn't be hard to get him off. It was all about the right application of pressure and heat and slickness... ah, yes. Lubricant would definitely help. He pointed to the nightstand with his free hand, and Steve's brow scrunched, head tilting. "Top drawer. Black bottle." Steve obediently stretched for it, which pressed the warm muscular length of his body down into Tony, and Tony grabbed his shoulder and kept him in place. Sleek skin and hard muscle weighing him down was a familiar and pleasant feeling, and he wriggled his slick hand between their bellies to get back to work on Steve's cock.

It felt good, the smoothness of the way Steve rode his hand, not a second's clumsiness or awkwardness despite the way he was splayed out astride Tony's body. Tony pawed at his shoulder and back, feeling the bulge and flex of muscles, the tight pull of tendons, and while it wasn't exactly what Tony liked, it was close enough that he had to shift and press his hard dick against Steve's thigh.

That dragged Steve's focus back, his head dipping for visual confirmation of Tony's state before he caught up the lube bottle and squirted a small lake of the stuff onto Tony's belly before running his palm down through it and taking Tony's dick in a firm grasp.

"Ah, teamwork. It's a beautiful thing." Tony kept his voice mostly steady, but Steve gave him a smile that was pure amusement, so sweet Tony had to grin back. Steve pushed close for a kiss, their hands bumping between them, and Tony grunted as Steve's knuckles skidded and dug in.

"Watch it, Steve, I don't want to have to explain bruises-" Steve grabbed his arms and flipped them over, a sudden manifestation of strength and speed that abruptly reminded Tony he was in bed with possibly the most efficient killer in the world. The surge of sudden lust left him breathless, and he thrust his leg between Steve's and ground in, determined to drag Steve along with him.

He liked it, he spread wider and arched against Tony's thigh, head rolling back on the pillow.

"Yeah, come on," Tony muttered, dimly surprised by the gravel tones in his voice. Steve took him at his word, grabbed at his hips, fingers sliding in the lube, and pulled him in tighter, hot slick grind and Tony's cock slid over the ridges of Steve's abs and he groaned. "Oh, you like this, don't you?"

Steve frowned very slightly, the blind pleasure in his eyes fading to calculation, and then he brought his knee up sharply, pitching Tony forward onto his chest. Tony's heart skipped again at being manhandled, and he could see Steve tucking that thought away, but then Steve's fingers walked down his spine and into the crease of his ass.

Tony spread his thighs, inviting, and he was nose to nose with Steve, and he didn't look away when Steve's finger, no, fingers pushed inside him. He let his mouth drop open as he panted.

"Oh, Christ, you have thick fingers." It wasn't like he hadn't done this before, he was pretty fond of his prostate, but that was more stretch than he was used to. He wriggled, pressing his cock into Steve's belly to ease the near-pain as Steve pushed deeper, probed around. "Long fingers, too. Oh, yeah. Yeah." His mouth slackened with pleasure, tongue dabbing out to wet his lips as Steve touched him inside, little frown of concentration as he studied Tony's face like he was a combat simulation.

A sudden sharp dig of his fingers, too rough, no, just right, and Tony made a wild noise and bucked, felt his insides begin to clench as Steve worked at him with no gentleness at all. "Yeah, just like that. Oh, yeah. I'm gonna - Steve." He shuddered and twisted, head falling back, and when Steve stroked him again, softer, he made a choked noise and thumped Steve in the shoulder. "Don't, don't. God."

"Sorry," Steve said, and he really didn't look it. Definite smugness in the line of his lips. Tony collapsed onto Steve's chest and groaned when he withdrew his finger.

"Yeah, it's still not going to fit," Tony mumbled against his collarbone, and Steve actually chuckled. "Laugh now, but you're not getting laid."

"You just hold still, I think I'll manage." Steve's arm round his waist held him in place, and Steve rocked up against him, cock sliding against Tony's hip. For a moment, Tony just lay there, feeling Steve's heartbeat quicken, the insistent push of him, and then he decided it just wouldn't do. It was - it was undignified, dammit. Tony sat up, and Steve groaned at the loss of pressure.

"Dammit, Tony." He narrowed his eyes, but let Tony shake off his grip and edge backwards.

Tony used both hands to jerk him off, one gripping him firmly at the base, one slipping up and down over the head. The feel of the loose skin round the head was odd, but not too distracting; it didn't seem to make any real difference. Steve didn't make much noise, fast shallow breaths, watching Tony's hands on him. Of course, if he'd done this way back when, it would all have been dark and secret and no chance to take his time and watch - Tony slowed his strokes, and Steve shifted his hips pointedly. Tony raised an eyebrow at him.

"No rush, Steve."

"Easy for you to say," he said, but submitted to Tony's pace. Tony took his time, experimented with grip, with speed, with using more lube, cataloguing the pitches of Steve's breath, the shivers of muscles in his thighs and belly, the way his eyes fluttered and fell shut. Filing away each twist and groan for later consideration, because he wasn't sure if this would happen again, if Steve would let it happen again, if Tony would let it happen again. Tony was aware enough to know that Steve was trouble, and not always in the fun way, however much fun this was, to drive him to the edge and keep him there, trembling and needy. There was a whine edging every breath when Steve cracked, grabbed his hands and squeezed.

"Stop teasing." His voice was raw in a way Tony had never heard from him, and Tony grinned and batted his eyelashes.

"Don't you like it?"

"I don't know why I thought you might be less annoying in bed." Steve linked their fingers, forcing Tony's hand faster, and he could feel Steve swelling in his palm, so ready. "Yeah, like that."

"And you say the modern world's always in a rush."

"I say - " Tony tightened his grip and twisted, and Steve went silent, biting his lip. His muscles tensed under Tony's thighs, and he dropped his head back on to the pillow, back arching slightly.

"Like that?" Tony said softly, and Steve nodded, eyes shut. He looked good like this, a faint sheen of sweat on his skin, flushed pink. Tony fought against his baser instincts for all of five seconds. "Beg me," barely more than a whisper, and Steve's eyes slitted open.

"Please," Steve dragged out the word to a moan, but there was no reluctance in his voice or his body, as if begging Tony for release was as easy and good as rutting into Tony's grip. "Please, Tony, don't stop, that feels so good - "

Nothing elaborate or particularly dirty, but having Steve spread out beneath him, pleading, sent a throb of arousal through Tony's belly. If he were a few years younger, he'd have been hard again by now ; as it was, he just sped his strokes, kept his grip tight, and Steve made a low but heartfelt sound and came messily, all over his belly and chest.

Tony petted him through the aftershocks, which lasted a good twenty seconds of shuddering and panting, eyes blank. It was hard not to feel smug at having reduced the world's premier military computer to so much greyish ooze, but he refrained from a jibe when Steve's eyes refocused on him, mouth curving in a dopey, unguarded smile.

Fortunately, most of the mess was on Steve, rather than on the sheets, and he cleaned up easily enough. Steve threw the tissues into the bin and glanced towards his clothes, and Tony grabbed his arm and pulled him back down to the bed.

"Post-coital cuddling, Steve, be civilized." Steve gave him a sceptical look, but he wrapped his arms around Tony and nuzzled into his hair with every sign of enjoyment. Tony snuggled into his grip; it felt rather pleasant to be the smaller one in this situation. He ran his hands over Steve's chest, and then tapped his fingers on Steve's belly, just above the blond hair.

"Seriously. Isn't it a pain?" Steve glared, but it was a half-heared effort, especially as his hand was still stroking Tony's shoulder.

"Sleep, why don't you?"

"I mean, obviously I don't have your wide experience - " Tony paused to snicker to himself. "Anyway, surely that must be a lot of work when dealing with the limits of the male anatomy." He brushed his knuckles over Steve's cock and Steve twitched.

"It's no trouble at all." Steve was giving him the amused look now. "You figure it out, genius."

Tony considered.

"What, really?"

"Why not?" And technically there was no reason why not, but Steve... well, Steve was just full of surprises today.

"You don't feel it violates your macho image?" he tried, and Steve's smile widened.

"Sure, Tony. I'm the least macho man to beat up the Hulk. I think I'll cope." He shut his eyes, and Tony studied him for a moment, the soft relaxation in his face so different from Steve he saw across meeting tables and battlefields. The faintly smug curve of his mouth was familiar enough, though; he loved a good job well done.

"Hey, does that mean - " he began, and Steve put a hand over his mouth without even opening his eyes.

"We'll see. Now go to sleep."