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Team Building (The Texting In Reverse Remix)

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His right hand tangled in Tony's hair and he pulled him down against himself, molding their bodies together. A sharp intake of breath was the only sound coming from Tony as he gripped him tighter, pressed his legs around his hips, bringing them together even closer. And Tony moaned, kissing him like he needed Steve, like a drowning man whose very survival depended on him, like he was the air that would save him.

Steve opened his mouth, let him deepen the kiss, let Tony kiss him, desperate and hard. It was far, far too late to stop and have second thoughts about this anyway; far, far too late to have any thoughts at all.

He vaguely remembered that all of it had started with Tony making a joke. Do you like what you see? he'd asked, when he'd caught Steve staring at him from the doorway as he'd been changing his dirty shirt after a long session in the workshop. Steve didn't think he'd said a word in return, but he'd given an answer alright, not sure anymore why he'd come to find Tony in the first place, only sure that this was exactly what he needed to happen right now.

A few months ago the world had mourned Tony Stark as terrorists had blown up his home - and so had Steve. He'd been relieved to find out only shortly after that Tony had survived whatever ordeal he'd been through this time. Just two weeks ago Steve had moved into Stark Tower after he'd nearly been killed while trying to stop Hydra from starting a massacre of as of yet unseen proportions. Hydra, Bucky, meeting Sam, being on the run, kissing Natasha, losing his not-really-a-home-yet-home in Washington, waking up in a hospital bed, no trace of the man that must have saved him... It had all been a rush of realizations, of finding his footing and a purpose, of having his new life turned upside down and falling back into place. Bucky was out there and he needed to find him. Hydra was out there still and he needed to crush it before it could destroy everything.

And in the midst of it all he'd found that he wanted things for himself, too.

Wanted.

He turned the kiss fierce, grabbed Tony's shoulder hard and used his weight to roll them over, letting him feel how very much he wanted this. Tony made a quietly surprised sound in the back of his throat, something between a chuckle and a sigh and Steve lost himself in the sensation of having this, here, right now. Real. Mine.

For once he needed to stop thinking and just give in to his own wants, give himself what he needed.

Wasn't that exactly what Natasha had told him to do? Not knowing, of course, that Tony would be the person he'd be going for.

He was about to rip the t-shirt right off of Tony's chest when Tony's hands caught his own and he stilled the movement, instead he sat up raising his arms up and peeling off the white t-shirt in one quick movement, throwing it to the side carelessly as Tony, disheveled and wide-eyed, stared up at him in awe. It was an altogether too alluring look on him and Steve wanted to keep it there. “Oh god, Steve, I...”

He wasn't sure he wanted to hear it, wanted to talk, wanted Tony to voice any of the things that were running through his head. He wanted to keep this moment as it was – uncomplicated and full of need. Now wasn't the time to slow down. The only thing to do was kiss Tony again, this time with less force, but no less fire. It was time to act instead of thinking things through.

And Tony didn't protest, holding on to Steve's strong shoulders and returning the kiss in kind.

That was enough to drive all thoughts from Steve's head finally, no frantic strategizing, no careful flirting, no promises of dancing in the future. He was through losing time.

Their hands fumbled through getting rid of the rest of their clothes. Reluctantly he had to give up his position above Tony to make it easier for them. He didn't stop touching though. Didn't stop placing kisses where new skin was exposed to him.

“Lie down,” Tony ordered, sounding breathless but focused.

He obeyed, watching him as he settled over him, stroking and teasing, exploring every inch of him. Their eyes met. It was like an electric bolt hitting home, the current running from one to the other. Steve couldn't keep still anymore.

They were both excited. More than that even. Steve was painfully hard by now.

Whatever they were going to do, it wasn't going to last long. It had been too long, much too long for him. There would be no way for him to hold back.

He pushed himself up on his arms, not sure how to communicate the true sense of urgency he was feeling, the need to have this here, now, instantly, when Tony's hand finally reached for him, wrapped around his cock, moving, teasing at first, then firm and demanding. He gasped, the gasp turning into a long drawn-out moan. He fell back against the pillows, throwing his head back, bucking up into that warm, delicious hand driving him wild. He forced his arms to his sides, fisting in the pillow, not trusting himself not to pull Tony down again, not to take over.

And when his eyes opened once more, Tony was watching him, brown eyes eyes full of lust and heat and concentration, as he was lying pressed up against Steve’s side, his own erection, a noticeable hot, firmness poking against Steve's hip bone.

It was hot and sexy, and so unexpected. He felt like bursting.

Words were running through his head. Nothing found its way out of his throat, but a guttural moan.

“Let it go,” Tony instructed and he came, embarrassingly fast and hard, just as Tony commanded. Tony didn't pull away, his focus now on his hand and the warm come running down it, watching as Steve's hard member was slowly softening in his grip.

Steve couldn't stop panting. “Sorry,” he said. He wanted to draw this out, wanted it to just not stop, moving his hips, bucking against the mattress, wishing for Tony’s touch to last, but he'd not been touched for so long that he just wasn’t able to control this now. He’d been keeping himself in check for far too long, perhaps.

“What for?” Tony asked and looked at him bemusedly. He was still contemplating his hand, sticky and stills stroking, and Steve wanted to reach out and find something to wipe it with, when Tony just raised it to his own lips and took an experimental lick.

It wasn't possible for it to have the effect it had – or maybe the serum had even more advantages than were obvious, but the heat that rose up in his cheeks, also very much settled in his growing, rekindling the fire instantly. He gave in to his own instincts, sat up more fully and grabbed Tony's hand by the wrist to pull him into his lap, kissed him, not holding back any of the overwhelming want he was feeling. Tony made a surprised noise that got lost somewhere between them, failed to react as fast as Steve was on him, but then practically melted against his chest, opening to the kiss.

Steve could feel himself grow hard again just from this, perhaps not as fast and urgently as he had before, but his body was agreeing with his strategist mind that after all the waiting this was not the day to just let it end this way. No, he wanted more. He deepened the kiss, rubbed up against Tony's body, letting him feel the renewed interest, his tongue snaking along the inside of Tony's mouth, tasting coffee and something else. Never before had kissing been so hot.

“God, Steve,” Tony said as he pulled away, panting slightly. “You're frying my brain.”

“In a good way, I hope,” he said and grinned, glad that apparently it wasn't just him enjoying this moment. “Actually, Natasha said I suck at kissing.”

Tony blinked, writhing unconsciously in Steve's lap, causing more delicious friction, causing Steve to tighten his grip on his arms. “She did?” he asked and blinked.

Steve smiled. He hadn't expected Tony to be so easily caught up in this, hadn't ever admitted to himself how often he'd imagined what Tony would be like during sex, would look like pressed against his sheets, but at least part of him had expected him to be all casual and in charge. Not like this. Open and surprised and even more perfect. “Not in these exact words,” he admitted and pressed up against Tony, growing painfully hard again.

“Perhaps she wasn't who you wanted to kiss.” Tony's voice sounded dry and sharp, just like Tony, but there was a breathlessness there that Steve was hearing for the first time that made his voice softer somehow.

It got to him. It surprised himself how much so. He tightened his grip, moving his hands to his hips to hold him in place, and kissed Tony at the point between his neck and shoulder, nipped at the soft skin there. Tony shuddered and moaned. “Oh god,” he whispered.

Which sounded enough like an invitation to go on for Steve to take him up on it. He pressed him down into the mattress, kissing and stroking along all the exposed skin, held him down firmly enough to communicate that he wanted him to stay put, as he slowly trailed a line of kisses down his torso and along his stomach and down. Tony drew in a shuddering breath as he reached his thigh.

He didn’t need to say it, didn’t need to tell Tony that he wanted to kiss him there, had already shown it.

Steve hadn’t done this often, but he knew what he was doing. Sloppily, making sure not to go too fast, he swallowed a few inches of Tony’s hard cock and a sharp, surprised sound escaped the man’s lips and he tensed, fighting to keep still. He stroked a hand along his leg, trying to sooth, and slowly started to move, letting Tony’s length slip out of his mouth and back in, until Tony was fisting the bedspread, desperately, his knuckles going white with the strain. He didn’t let up, listening to every shaky breath and every suppressed moan and pleading sound, Tony’s taste sharp and bitter on his tongue. His hands gripped Tony by the hips and his legs obligingly spread wider, allowing him better access, moaning and writhing beneath his mouth.

“Steve,” he warned, but Steve held on and forced his hips to remain still, not letting up, not letting him change the pace. He knew Tony was close, had been waiting patiently for release, knew he wanted him to come undone beneath his hands, his mouth. A hand settled in his hair, pulling, forcing him down, and Tony gasped, no longer able to hold still, bucking up once, coming, his well muscled thighs flexing.

Steve still didn’t let him go, making sure to swallow and not cease his ministrations, letting Tony ride it out and then unhurriedly let him slip from his mouth, to kiss the inside of his left thigh. He bit down hard and smiled as Tony didn’t so much cry out as gasp in surprise. When he finally looked up from between his legs with a smile, Tony, red faced and panting, was staring at him.

“I always knew you’d drive me crazy,” Tony said, trying to control his breathing, “but this was not how I thought it would happen.”

He gave him his most brilliant smile and hooked one of his legs over his shoulder and kissed another wet trail along the inside of it, slowly sitting up as he moved towards his ankle. “I think we’ve established that you drive me to do unexpected things quite often,” he said.

“You look positively debauched, Steve. That shouldn’t even be possible. You’re Captain America, for god's sake. Did I just debauch Captain America?”

“I think I had a hand in it, too, actually.”

His eyes were fixed on Steve’s lips as he finally let him go and moved up the bed to lie with him, their faces close to each other. “I can smell myself on you,” Tony said as if he was scandalized.

“Yes,” he agreed. “And I think I’m not finished with you at all.” Now that things had slowed down a bit he could take the time to survey the mess they’d made, realized that this was where thing could get awkward. So he shifted around a little pulling Tony with him, pulled down the covers so that they could slip under them. Tony didn’t protest, following his lead like this was natural. Admittedly they weren’t arguing about strategy as often anymore. He’d noticed that Tony had become quite good at following him during a fight.

But this was far from a fight.

It was kind of fitting that now that he was allowing himself to have this kind of intimacy he would end up doing this thing all out of sequence. With Peggy things had been so easy and so complicated and they’d made steps forward and backwards all the time, the war always looming over everything; never the right time. He'd been reborn into someone he'd always hoped to be: healthy and able to do the things he knew needed doing. His life had been turned upside down and still that had only meant that things had finally been set right for him in others.

Why would the rest of his life be any different? Maybe he needed to do things the other way around to succeed.

“So?” he asked, leaning against the bed's awfully comfortable and soft pillows and streaking a hand through Tony's hair absentmindedly. The man in question was resting against his chest now, his breathing having slowed down, his arm resting across Steve's midsection. The heat in his belly hadn't quite settled down. This had only been a taste and the one thing he knew for sure was that he wanted more.

Tony didn't shift or pull away, but his shoulders stiffened. “I... We...” he stopped. “This is where we talk about what just happened, yes?” he asked. Steve wished he could see his face to have something to go on here. “I can already tell you I suck at this part. Hard. Not the talking, the actually saying stuff part.”

He leaned back a little more and sighed. This was already more than he had any right to ask for: Tony was admitting a weakness, before he'd been pushed into a corner. The Tony he'd gotten to know didn't admit anything without a fight. That he had done so, said more than any words could about how important this was. He thought this over, found that he wasn't sure he could trust words to get across what was going on inside of him either and let his head fall back against the pillow. Then he suggested: “We can just fall asleep together. Just for a while.” Which didn't even seem like a bad idea. He couldn't even remember when he'd last felt so relaxed, and Tony, even now that they were talking and moving closer to uncomfortable territory for him, had so far made no move to pull away or loosen his hold on him.

“Yeah,” he said. “Yeah, sounds good, Steve. Sleeping. Man with a plan has a plan.”

He chuckled. Tony was sounding a little drowsy and he was feeling relaxed enough to not just find the comment annoying. “Or we could wait a little and continue,” he suggested.

“Okay,” Tony said, but he sounded like he was mulling it over.

“We'll still have to talk about this at some point, of course.”

“Yeah.” The willingness to agree with him was suspicious. Either he’d actually managed to exhaust him or Tony’s brain was working overtime already, looking for a way to get out of this talk. Maybe he was thinking clearly again and had realized that having passionate sex with a teammate - while very satisfying - was not exactly a good idea. Steve wasn't even sure he disagreed if he looked at the situation from a rational angle. He just knew for sure that he wanted this and that he'd be damned if he'd let it slip through his fingers without a fight.

“Sleep first,” Tony finally decided. “Then let’s do this again.”

Well, he could deal with that. One step at a time.

Later they took a shower together and had sex again under the hot spray of water.

Later he watched Tony get dressed; his hair still wet and brushed back, giving him a sleek look as he straightened his dark tie over a burgundy dress shirt in front of the body length mirror in his bedroom. Even the expression on his face was serious and closed off suddenly, as if the fancy clothes were his armor against what he knew was to come.

“We're not running away from this,” Steve declared, before Tony could put up all his walls and deny them this. “I suck at running away. In fact I suck at it more than I suck at talking. More than you could ever suck at talking.”

“Bad news for you, running away is what I do. And I'm quite good at it, too.” Tony looked at him in the mirror and Steve couldn't help but feel that was a deliberate choice to not meet his eyes directly, but only via the cold reflective surface, putting more distance between them.

“Don't tell me you don't want this,” Steve said, “because I had you begging for my touch minutes ago.” And wasn't that just the perfect memory to hold on to?

“I remember,” Tony said, his eyes sliding away, and it wasn't a brush-off. “Very vividly. You're pretty memorable. Which is entirely the problem here. I have no idea how to look at you without biting you. It's inappropriate even for me. We haven't even gone out or flirted in any serious...”

“We didn't flirt? I could have sworn we did.”

“That was arguing, Steve. I usually am much more annoying when I try to get someone to sleep with me.”

“More annoying?” He grinned. “No wonder I mistook it for flirting.”

Tony shrugged. “If you want to do this,” he said and waved his hand towards him and then gestured to himself, “then you better get used to that. I'm going to be annoying. You're going to be stubborn enough to drive me up the wall and we're going to fight. A lot. I don't do smooth relationships, so if it's a relationship you want, be prepared: I'm a hot mess.”

“Yeah? Man out of time here? I was nearly killed by my best friend from back when who was brainwashed by fucking Hydra to be some kind of supersoldier Hydra assassin. I've finally arrived in this life here and I know what I want.” He gestured open palmed to Tony and let that last part sink in. “Natasha was trying to set me up with random SHIELD agents, for god's sake. Because I needed to live a little. Because she thought I needed to loosen up. She wasn't wrong about that, just wrong about who I needed. And I can tell you I feel very much alive right now.”

Tony frowned at him via the mirror. “Don't tell me I didn't warn you when we have our next disagreement, darling. Because I did warn you. Officially and with all red flags I could pull. Can't help it if you still want to do this. I'm not crazy enough to turn down Captain America.”

“The make-up sex is going to be amazing,” he said without missing a beat and Tony raised an eyebrow at him.

“You're full of surprises aren't you, Rogers?”

He grinned. “Keep that in mind, Mr. Stark, and we'll get along fine.”

“Fair enough. And don't hold it against me when things start blowing up around you, because sooner or later that always happens around me.”

“Duly noted.”

Tony's posture had relaxed a little, finally, and Steve got up to walk over and stand behind him, reaching around him to finally straighten that tie to his own satisfaction.

“So, what now?” Tony asked, his eyes focused on what Steve's fingers were doing.

“Now,” Steve whispered in his ear, “we go out and have dinner. Just the two of us.”

“So, now you want a date?” Tony asked and smiled slowly. “I was led to believe you old-fashioned types did it the other way around.”

* * *

It was hard to keep a secret living with a bunch of smart people for whom observation was part of the survival instinct. So of course Natasha caught them as they went out. “Taking Cap to see the sights?”

“I know the sights.”

“He has no taste in food though,” Tony declared, pulling him along by the arm. “Honestly thinks he has any idea what a good burger is in today's New York. Can you imagine?”

Natasha gave both of them the once over, taking in the way they looked, clean and dressed to go out, Tony's hair still wet, and then nodded. “Let me know how you liked it.”

They sent her a picture of Steve about to bite into a burger later at Tony's insistence. It wasn't the only picture Tony texted that night. “Let's get them used to the thought of us,” he said with a sheepish grin and sent another one to Bruce and Pepper. “Of us going out.”

Of us having sex, he didn't say, but it was the “us being together” part that came through loud and clear.

It sounded like a sensible idea and Steve nodded. The last thing he wanted was for his new found happiness to disrupt their team dynamics. And team dynamics could be a fragile thing. “Send one to Clint, too,” he said. “We don't want him to feel left out.”

They'd cross that bridge when they came to it.

* * *

Steve took another bite of his pizza with anchovies, watching Tony type away on his Stark phone. He chewed and then asked, slowly: “Why exactly are we still doing this?” Steve had practically moved into Tony's rooms days ago and when they weren't caught up in their own crazy lives for the moment, trapped away from each other, they had become quite inseparable. They argued occasionally. They made up every time. They went out eating, but never dancing. Tony took him to art galleries and he made Tony come up from the workshop at night or brought him food when he didn't want to stop working. It was their little secret, but it was all falling into place. Steve knew it was just a matter of time though. They'd have to tell the team soon.

“You know they have bets going on who is going to jump who first and when?”

Steve knew his eyebrows must have risen into his hairline. “Clint?” It seemed like a reasonable guess.

Tony nodded and finished punching out his message. A second later Steve's own phone buzzed and he looked at it, realizing that Tony had sent out the message to the whole team and him in one go. I didn’t tell him yet it had anchovies on it, better break it to him gently, the message read.

“I like anchovies,” Steve said with a frown and put his phone away, just as Tony took another picture of him.

“And I needed a picture of you pouting, sweetheart.”

He rolled his eyes. “I think you didn't answer my question: How long are we going to keep this up? If they are taking bets then they are used to the thought of us together by now, right?”

“You're the one who always talks about team building. That's what this is: Team building exercise.”

Steve leaned back in his chair and grinned. “That's what this is, yeah?” He was relaxed and happy. Felt playful even. And he knew very well that he could drive Tony wild only by looking at him this way. “I should probably text Sam then, for the sake of team building and all.” He fished his new blue Stark phone back out of his back pocket and snapped a quick picture of Tony as he took a spoonful of dessert. “Looks delicious,” he said and grinned wider, happy with his own joke, already typing out the message.

Tony watched his fingers move over the touchscreen, typing and sending, and Steve met his eyes over their phones, grinning, feeling like a teenager. “So it's time then?”

His lover shrugged, and leaned back to study him. “Just know that this will change things.”

“I'll take those odds. Aren't you ready?”

Tony shrugged again, half-nodding. “I guess it's time, yeah. It was just so exciting to have this hot little secret affair with Captain America right under everyone's noses.”

Steve couldn't suppress his smile. They were going to tell the team. Tonight if he could help it. They'd been together for nearly two months now and things were progressing. This wasn't just about wanting anymore. They were building something better than that between them. He'd always longed for that. “Who do you think wins the pot? Did anyone bet on me jumping you first?”

“According to JARVIS, only Natasha.”

“Smart,” he said and leaned back, not taking his eyes away from Tony. He couldn't even remember when he'd ever been this happy, this content. “So tonight then?”

“Tonight,” Tony agreed and smiled back, his brown eyes twinkling. Excitement was always a good look on him.

“Tonight,” he repeated to make himself believe that they had finally reached that stage and then nodded, reaching for his final slice of pizza, watching Tony eat another spoonful of desert. “They'll be so relieved when we stop sending them all these pictures of food.”

Tony's grin turned sly. “They'll just be even more jealous, when they realize there could have been pictures from the bedroom all along. Although, yes, I think Bruce will just be relieved when all the texting stops. I think I'm testing his patience. He's ready to throttle me just so I'll talk to you about my feelings.” He rolled his eyes. “I think he fears if this blows up I'll want to talk to him about my feelings and he's not sure he can take it.”

Steve grinned, aware of how good all of them were at that part. He didn't mind that most of their serious talks ended with them naked between the sheets, telling each other all the things they weren't ready to voice in their own, very physical way. “Not sure it's a good thing to annoy someone who battles his ragey alter ego 24-7, but the fact that he hasn't actually hulked out and hurt someone, probably is a good sign.”

“Team building and exercise. Nobody hulked out and nobody is dead. Instead there's a betting pool. We're a sweet little family. This really has been a good experience for everyone.”

“I hope they'll see it that way.” In fact he hoped the team would just be happy for them. Because apparently he and Tony had both found what they wanted most and were ready to commit to it now.

They'd have to celebrate. Just the two of them. Later, after telling the team, when they were alone. He had plans.

Finally they were doing things the right way and in the right order, eyes to the future.