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Tony hums to himself contentedly, tucking a silicone glove under his armpit. There's a discreet cough from the breakfast bar; Tony glances up. Pepper -- looking almost as delicious as the kitchen currently smells in a pair of his boxers and the AC-DC t-shirt he'd cast off before bed -- leans over the white marble.

"Tony," she says, and thankfully it's one hundred percent I'm-half-awake and zero you-bastard in her voice, "it's two-thirty in the morning. What are you doing?"

"I got hungry," he says. "And I had an idea."

She makes an exasperated noise, but walks over to lean against the counter near the stove. He's glad he'd finished tidying up and can watch -- warm, sleepy Pepper is always worth it.

And he swears Pepper hears that thought because she rolls her eyes.

"You had an idea."

"Mm-hm." he says. "Nothing that will interfere with the running of your company."

She's looking over the dishes in the sink. "Tony, how long have you been awake?"

He shakes his head, looks up at the ceiling. "Two-thirty, you said? So..."

"One hour, thirteen minutes, and six seconds," JARVIS interrupts.

"Not helping," Tony tells the AI, but Pepper's giving him a lazily amused grin and the timer goes off. He pulls the glove back on, tosses Pepper a cheeky smile and reaches into the oven.

The crust is golden perfection, if he does say so himself, and the wave of spices -- cloves, cinnamon, anise -- beneath the sweetness of baked fruit would be completely worth it even if Pepper weren't looking at him with rounded eyes.

"You got hungry. At one-something in the morning. And the idea you had was to bake an apple pie?"

"That wasn't the idea at all."

Her eyebrows go up. "Oh, no?"

He shakes his head, "I didn't have time to invent the universe, Pepper. This is a pear pie. And -- hey!" he says, catching her fingers, "And you complain about me taking risks."

The look she gives him is more eloquent than words; he gives her his best boyish grin and a shrug and she reaches out and swats him in the shoulder. And then catches his ankle with her foot in a maneuver that knocks him back into the corner of his kitchen, where she pins him.

"How long will it take to cool?"

He could do the math in his head but JARVIS is there with the answer; half an hour before it'll be cool enough to cut and it's just as well the AI butts in because Pepper is pressing a kiss to his lips and her lean body against his. Her heart beating against the arc reactor, fluid seconds before she shifts back again, her hand on his cheek.

"Want to kill some time while we wait?"

"Hm," she answers, smirking. "But what will we do with the other twenty six point four minutes?"

Twelve percent -- "Oh, you did not go there."

She reaches around and squeezes his ass.

"Prove me wrong, then, loverboy," she says, stepping back and turning away with a deliberate sway in her hips. Tony watches her sashay out of the kitchen.

"JARVIS?"

"Timing begins...now, sir."

"Good."