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Conflict Resolution

Chapter Text

Tony stalked into the tower, resolutely heading for the elevator bank with Steve nipping at his heels like one of those yappy little dogs that he absolutely refused to have anything to do with, and thanked all that was holy (and JARVIS) that the doors automatically slid open at their approach. If he'd had to stand there waiting for the car, Steve huffing impatiently next to him, well, he'd already been ready to call for the suit five minutes ago to take him directly to the lab and lock himself in just to avoid having this conversation.

He honestly didn't know what he'd do if Steve continued to press him further right there in the lobby.

Tony glanced over his shoulder, sighing internally when he was met with flashing blue eyes and compressed lips. He honestly couldn't recall what had started this particular argument, but he was pretty sure that it was his fault. Likely he had made some innocuous comment, said a bit too snidely, and Steve's hackles had risen. He also vaguely remembered some woman being there, an Agent Thirteen, who'd spent the entire time hanging off of Steve like a wet blanket; and seriously what the fuck was that? Have a little decorum, won't you?

But whatever, not important.

Meeting Steve's eyes, he flashed his patented 'I don't give a fuck' smirk, which he just knew would irritate the other man (and fuck if that wasn't hot; seriously, he shivered with want every time Steve leveled that look onto him), and then smugly turned back to the elevator, slipping quickly inside and was sorely tempted to hit the door close button before Steve could join him.

But he was also aware that the action would be useless; JARVIS was a dirty traitor, and one of Steve's biggest fans since he was pivotal in making Tony eat and sleep on a semi-regular basis. He knew his AI would just ignore him.

Tony slumped into the far wall, feigning nonchalance as he stubbornly refused to look at Steve, and felt kind of badly about his earlier dog analogy. Steve was his best friend; he meant well, and if Tony were being honest with himself, he wanted Steve to be so much more than that. (Not that that had any chance in hell of happening.)

But Christ, the man just would not, could not let things go.

"I hope you realize that you are utterly ridiculous," Steve said without preamble, his brow pinched with frustration as he slid into the car.

"I'm ridiculous?" Tony asked, peering over his sunglasses incredulously. And okay, maybe he had blown things a little out of proportion, but still. "I wasn't the one slobbering over someone like a dog with a choice bone."

And what was with him and dog analogies today?

"Seriously, Tony?" Steve stared right back at him, equally as incredulous.

Tony merely snorted and refused to answer; mostly because he wasn't certain he could adequately defend his actions, given that he didn't really remember what he had said. All he knew was Miss Blonde, Beautiful and Perky had been way too close to Steve, and he was not happy about that; not happy at all.

"You know...I don'," Steve spluttered, pinching the bridge of his nose and clearly exasperated with Tony. Which was fine because Tony didn't care. Nope. Did not. Not one bit.


And then Steve looked up and spoke words that were surely going to guarantee Tony a firm place in hell if he answered honestly.

"What do you want from me?"

What did he want from him? Did he just seriously...? He couldn't have. But Steve just stared at him, a tight smile on his lips as he waited for Tony to answer. And yeah, Tony wasn't touching that one with a ten-foot pole.

"What do I want?" Tony reiterated, shaking his head to clear it of the multitude of fantasies that filled it. It was a trap. It had to be. Blowing out a harsh breath, he waved to the camera so JARVIS would close the door. "Yeah, you don't want to ask that question, Cap. And I can guarantee that you really don't want the answer."

"I wouldn't count on that, Stark," Steve said, jamming the button to the common room floor. "I wouldn't have asked otherwise."

"Yeah, I'm going to go with no," Tony said, his tone flippant as he hit the button for the labs.

"Really?" Steve huffed, crossing his arms over his chest and slouching against the wall. "That's your answer to everything? Avoidance?"

And that, that right there, that just rankled. He wasn't avoiding. He was just...shutting down a potentially painful conversation where Steve very sweetly and politely told Tony that while he was flattered by Tony's interest, he had a Miss America lined up and waiting.

Or mister. Steve wasn't picky.

But based on how he and Grabby Hands were practically canoodling in the middle of the God damned hallway, he'd place his bets on her.

And really, he didn't need to be reminded of that.

"Don't push me, Cap," Tony said, his voice low and controlled, but fraying around the edges as he flicked a heated glance Steve's way. He did not need this. Not today. Shoulders taut, Tony held Steve's gaze, which, had he really wanted to avoid this conversation, was the worst possible thing to do. Because Steve did not back down. Ever.

"Or what?" Steve challenged, staring Tony down defiantly, so reminiscent of the days where he had faced off with men twice his size, unrelenting, unwilling to back down, that it made something inside Tony melt and ache at the same time.

But Tony wasn't one to stand down either. It's why they butted heads so often.

"Or you just might get more than you bargained for..." Tony clenched his teeth, baring them into a parody of a smile, his fingers twitching as he fought down the urge to clench them as well, reluctant to demonstrate such an obvious tell of his growing aggravation.

If Steve didn't watch it...

"Yeah, I'll try to feel concerned about that," Steve snorted dismissively.

And the thing was, Tony knew exactly what Steve was doing, knew that his words were carefully selected to nettle Tony's last nerve. Steve's a brilliant tactician; and a sneaky, little shit to boot. He knew exactly which of Tony's buttons to push to get the desired results. And he had no compunctions about pushing Tony right to that edge if it got him what he wanted.

Tony's knowledge of this skill didn't stop him from leaping right into that trap, however. With both feet.

This showdown has been coming for weeks.

"You really want to know what I want from you?" Tony said, his voice dropping an octave, and he couldn't help the jolt of dark satisfaction that shot through him when Steve shivered. It was subtle, but there. And damned if that didn't do things for him.

Tony's eyes fell to half mast, his back arching indolently against the wall, a seductive smirk stealing across his face - one he'd been told made both men's and women's knees go weak - as he studied the other man.

"That's what I asked," Steve said, his smile bland and tone even, but Tony could see the flash of interest sparking in his eyes, darkening them as the pupils dilated a bit.

And he couldn't help feeling a bit smug; he knew the picture he made, all lazy seduction. He knew his appeal, and had wielded it like a finely honed knife for years. He knew this game all too well, and played it to win. Steve had no idea what he was getting himself into, but if he wanted to play, fine by him. He was game.

"Oh, I want so many things, Cap," Tony purred, slinking across the car to pin Steve into the wall with nothing more than his body, his lashes lowered, eyes coyly watching him over the top of his sunglasses. Steve swallowed, but remained otherwise placid. "So many God damned things that I can't even begin to list them all."

Tony leaned in, pressed against the other man hips to chest when Steve didn't move away.

"But let's start with what I want right this minute," Tony said, voice smooth as silk. "Right now, I want to hit the stop button and press you into this wall and kiss you until you can't breathe; my hands and lips and tongue and teeth on every bit of exposed skin available, biting, licking, scratching, sucking, teasing until you're hot and flushed and panting for more."

"Then, I want to drop down to my knees, undo your belt with my teeth, and yes I can do that, I'm very good at it too; and then undo your pants and yank them, along with your briefs, down to your ankles, until that beautiful, hard cock that I feel against my hip is exposed. I want to taste you. I want to slide my lips along the length; lick it, suck it, touch it, slide it down my throat until you're on the edge of coming."

"And then, then just before you do, I'll stop because I have better things to do with you. I'd get up, flip you around and work you open with my fingers, and my tongue if you'd like; one finger, two fingers, three, stroking you, pressing against your prostate until you're near mindless with pleasure."

"And then finally, after I couldn't stand it any longer, I'd slick myself up and slide into you oh-so-slowly, watching as your ass stretched to accommodate me. But, here is where I run into a dilemma. Because I can't figure out if I want to fuck you slow and deep to hear the breathy, little gasps I'm sure you'd make, or if I want to take you fast and hard, and make you scream my name. I guess I'd leave that last part up to you."

By the time Tony was done, he had a hand pressed to the wall by Steve's shoulder, and their faces were so close their breaths mingled, hot and shallow, and damn Tony just wanted to reach up and lean in and damn the consequences. Steve, for his part, was beautifully flushed, his lips damp from where he'd licked them, and eyes lidded as he stared down at Tony. It was a gorgeous sight.

"That's what I want," Tony said, his voice tight, barely audible.

Tony stared at Steve defiantly, waiting for the other man to punch him, but was hit with a verbal sucker punch instead when Steve leaned forward and said,

"Then what's stopping you?"

Tony reeled away from Steve, flinching as if he'd been burned, eyes wide, arms flailing a bit as he stumbled back into the other wall, his mouth agape. A low, strangled wheeze sounded as his response dried in his throat. Steve, for his part, just watched him with lazy, sparkling eyes, a smugly amused smirk pasted on his face as Tony tried and failed to find words.

"Cat got your tongue?" Steve taunted, one brow arched.

"What?" Tony choked, his mind still trying to make sense of what just happened, and how neatly Steve had turned the tables on him.

"Did I stutter?" Steve asked. And oh, didn't he look oh-so-proud of himself too.

Tony just continued to gawk, open disbelief painted across his face, not quite believing his ears; and he was so entranced by the other man's skillful play, that he hadn't even realized that they'd passed the lab floors until the doors opened to the common room. Blinking, Tony watched, wide-eyed as Steve sauntered over and leaned down, looking him up and down this time.

And just what the fuck was that?

"Hmmm..." Steve said, rubbing a finger against his bottom lip as he dragged his eyes over Tony's body, and then up to meet his eyes, flashing his earnest, butter won't melt in my mouth smile (and what-the-fuck-ever). "Let me know when you want to resolve that."

Tony let out a strangled breath, which was meant to be a clever retort, but never made it past the constriction in his throat, and silently boggled as Steve walked out and the doors closed behind him. Tony stared at the doors for several long moments before his breath finally came back enough for him to speak.

"JARVIS, what just happened?"

"I believe Captain Rogers just called your bluff, sir."

Yeah; yeah, that's what he thought had happened.