Chapter 1: It's All A Blur, Last Night
“You know,” said Darcy, trying not to fall over as she leaned in to whisper in Bruce’s ear, “I really like your hair.”
“I do know,” Bruce replied, turning to smile at her. Judging by how big and goofy it was, he was about as drunk as Darcy was right now. “You tell me every morning. And because I love you, I haven’t cut it, even though it’s starting to make funny animal shapes.”
“Awww,” she cooed, giving him a sloppy kiss on the cheek. “That’s so sweet!”
Bruce blushed. “I like your hair, too,” he said, his eyes on a point somewhere over her left shoulder. Whether it was because he was avoiding her gaze, or because his eyes weren’t able to focus due to the alcohol in his system, Darcy wasn’t sure. Either way, she wasn’t going to let him avoid her. “I figured as much,” she said, “since both you and the Other Guy insist on petting it, like I’m a cocker spaniel or something.”
Bruce managed to meet her gaze. “Some guys like legs, some guys like breasts. I’ve got a thing for nice, healthy hair,” he said with a shrug. “Though it certainly doesn’t hurt that you’ve got nice breasts and legs,” he added, running his eyes down her body. “You’re pretty much my perfect woman.”
“Are you fucking serious?” Darcy said incredulously, the alcohol making her babble even more than she usually did. “I mean, for crying out loud, you’re a fucking genius with, like, fifteen doctorates, and I’m an idiot who barely finished her degree, and wasn’t your last girlfriend some brilliant doctor, too? And I swear like a fucking sailor and you always sound like you should be narrating some documentary on the Discovery Channel or something and—“
“Perfect,” Bruce interrupted, insistently, and Darcy wondered if she’d just imagined the teensiest hint of green in his eyes. “Do I have to marry you to prove it? Because I will.”
Darcy’s jaw dropped. “What did you say?”
“Um,” said Bruce, his eyes darting around as though wondering if he could blame that little outburst on somebody else. Namely, Tony.
“Did you just fucking propose to me?” Darcy asked, jabbing her half-full beer bottle at him. “Because, what the fuck, Bruce, we’ve been dating for, like, three months.”
“So?” he said, snatching the bottle from her hand and taking a swig. “You told me your parents got married two weeks after they met.”
“Yeah,” she said, rolling her eyes. “And that turned out so awesome.”
“So, we’ll be better,” he said. “I mean, we can’t be any worse than our parents, right?”
“Yeah, that’s romantic,” she snorted.
“Give me a break,” he said. “I’ve never done this before.” He finished off her beer and dropped it to join the countless other empty bottles littering the floor in front of the sofa.
“This is so fucking weird,” said Darcy. “I mean, I was the one who got us dating, I was the one who got us sleeping together, and now you’ve suddenly decided to wear the pants?”
“Had to take the opportunity when I could,” said Bruce. “Now quit stalling and answer me.”
Darcy smirked. “I forgot the question. And I may be an independent woman of the twenty-first century, but I expect you to kneel and I want a fucking diamond.”
“Don’t have a diamond with me,” Bruce replied, gently nudging her away from him and, with only a minimal amount of tripping, managing to slide off the couch and onto one knee in front of her. “Being that this is kind of spontaneous, which is new for me—“
“Anyway. So, now that I’m kneeling, will you answer my goddamn question?”
Darcy fluttered her eyelashes at him and ran her fingers through his hair. It really was making funny animal shapes; now it looked kind of like a tiger chasing an elephant. “What was the question, again?”
“Will you marry me, dammit?”
Darcy twined her fingers in his gorgeous messy hair, leaned over, and kissed him, hard. “Only if we can get married right now, before we both sober up and lose our nerve.”
“Oh, fuckJesusGodinHeaven,” Darcy groaned, mashing her face into her pillow. “My head.” Keeping her eyes tightly closed, she turned over onto her back and sprawled her arms out, nearly jumping out of her skin when her hand brushed against something firm. She sat up and turned her head, almost afraid to see who was sleeping next to her.
She relaxed slightly when she recognized the hair sticking out from the comforter. “At least I had drunk sex with my boyfriend,” she said to herself. Once her heart calmed down a bit, she began to notice that they weren’t in her bedroom. Or Bruce’s.
“Um, Bruce,” she whispered, nudging his leg with her toe under the covers.
“Mmhhhgh,” Bruce replied, snuggling even deeper into the blankets.
“Bruce,” she hissed, nudging him harder. “Where the fuck are we?”
The blankets rustled as he poked his head out to squint blearily up at her. “Please don’t yell at me,” he groaned. “I think I’m kind of hung over.”
“You and me both,” she replied, lifting a hand to her forehead. “But we’ve got bigger problems. Like, Other Guy sized ones.”
Bruce looked at her in confusion until he, too, noticed that they were in unfamiliar surroundings. “Shit,” he said, sitting up and looking around, running a hand through his hair. “Where are we?”
Darcy shrugged, “Hell if I know,” she said, then turned and saw a brochure on the nightstand next to her. She leaned over and, as she stretched out her left arm to grab it, noticed something sparkling on the fourth finger of her hand. “What,” she exclaimed, pulling her hand back to gawp at it, “the fuck is this?”
“A diamond?” said Bruce, leaning in to get a closer look.
Darcy turned to glare at him. “No shit, Sherlock. Why is it on my hand?”
“Uh,” stammered Bruce. He lifted up his own left hand, which had a solid gold band glinting on the matching finger. “I think I might know where we are, Darcy.”
Chapter 2: Now, Don't Blame Me
“Okay, who had a party without me? And, seriously, who has a party with nothing but beer to drink? Unless you’re in college; in which case, there should be a beer pong table set up somewhere.”
The Avengers find the leftovers of a party and try to figure out who threw it. Also, Bruce and Darcy are missing.
Many thanks to Chaerring for helping me out with this chapter! You're a star, my dear!
(See the end of the chapter for more notes.)
Meanwhile, back at
Stark Avengers Tower…
“What in the world happened here?” Steve asked incredulously, as he came into Rec Room A (or what Tony called the Awesome Movie Room of Awesome. Steve wasn’t quite sure why “awesome” was needed twice, but Tony insisted it was necessary, and called it AMRA, until everyone in Avengers Tower called it that and only Steve ever called it Rec Room A anymore, and even then, people would say, “Where?” and Steve, with a sigh, would have to say, “AMRA.” Sometimes, he really missed the Army).
There were beer bottles littering the floor, popcorn all over the sofa, and a bowl that contained the milky, melted remnants of what looked like mint chocolate chip ice cream teetering dangerously off the edge of a cushion, the spoon having already fallen and now leaving a sticky spot on the carpet beneath it. The television was on, turned to one of those daytime talk shows that had four women of various ages and races talking about the sort of things women nowadays apparently cared about (from what Steve could tell by what was onscreen at the moment, that consisted of handsome men and food), but apart from Steve himself, the room was empty. He heard footsteps behind him and turned to see Tony coming down the hall, yawning hugely. “Tony,” Steve said sternly, “did you have anything to do with this?”
“With what?” asked Tony, mid-yawn, running a hand blearily across his face. He peeked past Steve’s shoulder at the mess in the room. “Okay, who had a party in AMRA without me?” he asked, walking past Steve into the room and surveying the damage. “And, seriously, who has a party with nothing but beer to drink? Unless you’re in college; in which case, there should be a beer pong table set up somewhere.”
“What’s beer pong?” asked Steve.
“You don’t want to know,” said Natasha, sailing past the two men into the room and over to a bookshelf along one wall, where she pulled down a thick book, bound in leather, with the title stamped across it in Russian.
“Really, Tash?” said Tony. “Dostoyevsky? That’s kind of cliché, isn’t it?”
Natasha just rolled her eyes at him, muttered, “Отвали,” under her breath, and settled into a plush chair in the corner, folding her long legs underneath her. She opened the book and began to read, pointedly ignoring the two men.
“Okay,” said Tony, turning to face Steve. “Well, if it wasn’t you, which it obviously wasn’t because you never have any fun—“
“I don’t see the point of drinking if I can’t get drunk, Stark.”
“—and it wasn’t Natasha because she drinks vodka straight from the bottle—“
“No, she doesn’t; I don’t know why you insisted on starting that rumor.”
“And it obviously wasn’t me having the party, because it’s not messy enough for my parties. That leaves Thor and Clint.”
“What about Dr. Banner?” asked Steve.
Tony snorted. “Yeah, as if the doc ever lets loose.”
“He’s mellowed out quite a bit since he started dating Darcy,” Steve pointed out.
“Now there’s a girl who looks like she knows how to party,” said Tony, grinning. “I’m still shocked that the big guy managed to land her.”
“I’m pretty sure it was the other way around,” said Natasha, not looking up from her book.
“I heard she got sick of the coy flirty routine because he wasn’t picking up her signals and finally just pinned him up against a wall in his lab,” said Tony, waggling his eyebrows.
Steve blinked. “That was rather…forward of her.”
“Times change, Cap,” Natasha replied lazily, turning a page.
Tony smirked. “Who woulda thunk it? Not only does he land a hot chick way too young for him, he doesn’t even have to do the seducing! Lucky bastard.”
“Whoa!” The exclamation drew the three heroes’ eyes to the door, where Clint stood, eyebrows raised. “Did a frat move in here last night?”
“Told ya,” said Tony, who had made his way over to what he modestly referred to as the “Snack Corner,” but was actually a full bar, and was now pouring himself a drink. “Only college guys drink that much beer without anything to chase it with.”
“Really, Tony?” said Steve reprovingly. “At this time of the morning?”
“What?” said Tony innocently as he took a sip. “It’s a screwdriver; there’s orange juice in it.”
Steve just rolled his eyes. “Okay,” he said. “Well, obviously, it wasn’t any of us. That leaves—“
“Greetings, fellow warriors! It seems as though one of you had a merry time last night! I am saddened that I was not invited to partake in the festivities!”
“Not Thor,” Steve finished.
“Guess it was Dr. Banner,” said Clint. “Who woulda thought?”
“I never took him for the type to get this drunk,” said Steve. “In fact, I don’t remember the last time I saw him have more than one beer. He’s always so careful about staying in control.”
“Well,” said Clint, with a careless shrug. “If Darcy was with him, she might’ve convinced him. And she is just out of college. Therefore, beer party.”
“Where is Banner, anyway?” said Tony, refilling his drink. “He wasn’t in the lab this morning, which is weird. He’s normally there before I am.”
“Well,” said Clint, eyeing the beer bottles. “If he drank even half of those, he’s probably sleeping off a killer hangover right now.”
“Dr. Banner is not in his room,” said JARVIS slowly. “Nor is Miss Lewis.”
“Where are they?” asked Steve.
“They were quite intoxicated last night,” said JARVIS, almost hesitantly. “I believe they were not quite thinking properly.”
Tony rolled his eyes. “Spare us the delicate deflections.”
“I did promise Miss Lewis I wouldn’t tell.”
“Who pays your salary, JARVIS? Where are they?”
When JARVIS told them, the room went completely still.
“О Боже,” breathed Natasha, breaking the silence.
“Wow,” said Clint. “Go, Doc.”
“What is the significance of that land?” asked Thor.
“Where?” asked Steve.
Tony didn’t say anything. He was too busy laughing.
1. Google tells me that “хуй тебе” means “Fuck you,” and “боже мой,” means “My God.” I know no Russian, so feel free to correct if I’m wrong. Thanks.
1a. Thanks to Kate for correcting my Russian. =) She tells me that "Отвали" is the proper for "Fuck you," and "О Боже" sounds better for "My God."
2. Also, from what I can tell, Vegas wasn’t a huge deal back in the early 40’s, so Steve wouldn’t have been really aware of it. The Manhattan Project people were doing their thing in the Vegas area, but the gaming/eloping stuff didn’t take off until the 60’s or so (according to my good friend Wikipedia).
Chapter 3: Did We Get Hitched Last Night?
“Holy fucking hell; I’m Mrs. Banner, now.”
Also, FLUFF. LIKE, THE FLUFFIEST FLUFF THAT EVER FLUFFED.
Thanks to Chaerring for reading over it for me.
“Holy fuck,” Darcy said, her eyes darting back and forth between the rings on their hands. “We got married?”
Bruce sighed heavily and rubbed one hand down his face. “I do vaguely recall proposing,” he said.
“And we’re in Las Vegas? How the hell did we even get here?”
“I'm not sure,” said Bruce, shrugging. “The Other Guy is fast, but not even he can run from New York to Nevada in one night. But I think we promised JARVIS we’d make him godfather to our first child if he let us borrow the jet without telling Tony first.”
“JARVIS? Oh, my God.” Darcy leaned down and buried her face in her pillow. “God, just kill me, now, please.”
“That’s kind of hurtful,” said Bruce. “Is the idea of being married to me that awful?”
“No!” Darcy lifted her head to meet his eyes. “It’s not that. It’s just, oh, my God, my sister is going to kill me, because she’s planned on being my Maid of Honor since we were old enough to like boys, and we’ve made an AI godparent to our future child, and I can just picture the look on Tony’s face when JARVIS caves and tells him where we went.”
“Oh, God,” said Bruce, realization dawning. “We are never going to hear the end of this.”
“Just please, please, God, tell me we weren’t married by an Elvis impersonator.”
“I think even drunk we have better taste than that.”
“Thank God.” Darcy turned and picked up the brochure she’d been reaching for before she’d been distracted by her ring. “This is a really nice ring, by the way,” she said as she read the pamphlet. “Hey, look, apparently we got married at the same place as Michael Caine. Awesome.”
Bruce reached over and took her hand, bringing it closer so he could see the ring for himself. “It is lovely,” he agreed. “And, apparently, Drunk Me is ridiculously sentimental. This was my mother’s. I guess I went and grabbed it before we left New York.”
Darcy’s jaw dropped. “No way,” she said, snatching her hand back to stare at the ring with a new appreciation. “We got drunk and ran off and eloped, and I’m wearing your mother’s ring?”
“Well, you are my wife, now,” said Bruce. “Who else would I give it to?”
“You are taking this really, really well,” said Darcy, narrowing her eyes suspiciously. “Why are you not freaking out and telling me that we have to divorce now because the Other Guy will squash me or that stupid General asshole is going to kidnap me or something, like when we started dating, but times a million?”
Before Bruce could answer, there was a knock at the door. “Room Service!” a cheerful voice called though the door.
“Oh, for crying out loud,” groaned Darcy, putting her hand back up to her forehead. “They need to take it down a decibel or two.”
Bruce laughed, leaned over and kissed her cheek, then climbed out of bed and pulled on a robe that was draped over a chair nearby. He walked over to the door and opened it.
“Good morning, Dr. and Mrs. Banner!” said the bellhop as he pushed a covered cart into the room. “Thought you two might like a little breakfast.”
“Thanks,” said Bruce, casting his eyes around for his wallet. He spotted it next to the TV and grabbed it, pulling out a few bills. He handed them to the bellhop, who thanked him and left. Bruce shut the door and turned back into the room to see Darcy gaping at him, looking a bit shell-shocked.
“What is it?” Bruce asked, pushing the cart over to the bed.
“Holy fucking hell; I’m Mrs. Banner, now.”
Bruce smiled. “That you are.” He pulled the cover off the cart. On it were two trays, containing scrambled eggs and toast, as well as a large carafe of coffee.
“Oh, my, God, coffee,” said Darcy, making gimme motions towards the steaming carafe.
“Should I just hand you the pot and a straw?” asked Bruce wryly, as he poured her a cup and handed it over. She wrapped her hands around the mug, took a deep whiff, and sighed happily. Once the coffee was working its way into her system, she sat up more fully, pulling the sheet up under her armpits, and fixed her eyes on her new husband.
“You didn’t answer my question,” she said.
“What question?” asked Bruce, as he poured ketchup on his eggs.
“Why aren’t you freaking out?”
“I don’t know,” he said, as he set her tray on her lap and rejoined her on the bed, settling his own tray over his knees. “Maybe it’s because, while most of last night is fuzzy, I do remember being completely and blissfully happy. Both of us were.”
“You and me?” Darcy picked up her fork and took a small bite of eggs.
“No, me and the Other Guy.”
Darcy froze. “Really?”
Bruce nodded. “I’m pretty sure if he thought it was a bad idea, he would’ve done something to stop us.”
“I told you he loved me,” said Darcy smugly, taking another bite.
“You were right,” he replied.
“Damn straight, I was right,” said Darcy. “And don’t you forget it.”
“First rule of being a husband, right?” said Bruce, leaning over to kiss her.
“Very good, Dr. Lewis,” she replied, kissing him back.
“Not that I would object to taking your name,” he said, as they pulled back and returned to their breakfasts, “but Bruce Lewis just sounds kind of silly.”
“Bruce Lewis,” said Darcy thoughtfully, testing it out. “Bruuuuuce Lewwwis. Yeah, you’re right.”
“Darcy Banner, on the other hand, sounds rather nice.”
“Darcy Lewis-Banner. Darcy Banner-Lewis.”
“As long as my name’s in there somewhere,” he replied, kissing her again.
“You know, hung over you is pretty sentimental, too,” Darcy said, giggling a bit, reaching out to play with the hair at the nape of his neck.
“Don’t worry,” Bruce said, smiling wryly. “I’ll get over it and be back to furtively kissing your cheek when no one’s looking, eventually.”
“Fuck that,” she said, grabbing his head, pulling it to hers, and kissing him passionately. “We’re married, now. We have more right to neck in the hallways than anybody else in all of Avengers Tower.”
"Can't argue with that," Bruce agreed. "Now, come here, Mrs. Banner-Lewis. I haven't necked in a while. Let's practice."
Chapter 4: We're Partners in Crime
"Maybe she’ll let us throw him an ‘Okay, So You’re Technically Not a Bachelor Anymore, But You Ran Off And Got Married Before We Could Throw You a Bachelor Party’ party if we throw her one, too.”
Tony plans a post-wedding Bachelor Party. Also, JARVIS makes a "Godfather" reference.
“So,” said Steve, after they’d recovered from the shock of hearing the news of Bruce and Darcy’s elopement (and after Tony had passed out celebratory glasses of champagne, despite Steve’s protests about how it was still too early for alcohol, insisting that they toast to the newlyweds) “the question is: should we go get them?”
Tony, whose lips were still twitching in amusement, said, “Nah. We don’t really need them right now, do we? Not a whole lot going on at the moment, and even if there was, there are five of us, right? Let ‘em have their honeymoon. Goodness knows the big guy could use a few days of relaxation and endless sex with a beautiful woman.”
“I have heard of this tradition, this ‘honeymoon,’” said Thor. “I read about it in that great collection of Midgardian knowledge Lady Darcy calls ‘Wiki.’ But is not a ‘moon’ a month? I recall my beloved Jane telling me about that.”
“Well, they were a month long way back in the day,” said Clint. “Now, they’re usually a week or two, depending on how much you can afford.”
“JARVIS,” said Tony suddenly. “Find out what hotel the newlyweds are staying in and start charging everything to SHIELD.”
“Fury’s never gonna go for that,” said Natasha, her nose still stuck in The Brothers Karamazov. “He might actually try to convince them to split up. For the good of the team, of course.”
“Heartless bastard,” Tony replied, indignant. “He’d smother a room full of kittens for the good of SHIELD, wouldn’t he? Well, even the Dread Pirate Fury can’t stop true love. Bill it to Stark Industries, JARVIS.”
“As you wish, sir.”
“Was that a Princess Bride reference?”
“I don’t know what you’re talking about, sir.”
“Guess that answers my question,” said Steve.
“Hey!” Tony exclaimed suddenly. “This running off to Vegas thing means I never got to throw him a bachelor party!”
“Oh, no,” said Natasha, deadpan. “What a tragedy.”
“It is,” said Tony. “I throw awesome parties, don’t I, JARVIS?”
“No comment, sir.”
“Ah, well,” Tony added, cheerfully. “No worries. We’ll just have to do it when he gets back. It’ll be the most kickass bachelor party ever.”
“Banner’s not really the booze and hookers type, though,” said Clint, frowning. “I don’t think he’ll be sorry he missed out on that particular tradition.”
“I do not know if Lady Darcy will allow Dr. Banner to take part in such…debauched festivities,” said Thor, forehead wrinkling thoughtfully. “Such things are acceptable, and even enjoyable, for an unmarried man on Midgard, I have heard; but it is frowned upon for those who have plighted their troth.”
“’Plighted their troth?’” echoed Tony. “And, allow? Banner’s his own man; it’s not like Darcy owns—wait, this is Darcy and Banner we’re talking about. Never mind. But maybe she’ll let us throw him an ‘Okay, So You’re Technically Not a Bachelor Anymore, But You Ran Off And Got Married Before We Could Throw You a Bachelor Party’ party if we throw her one, too.”
Thor considered it, and then nodded. “Lady Darcy would appreciate the equality in the gesture.”
Tony was silent, drumming his fingers against his chin as he wondered just how much debauchery Darcy would allow at Bruce’s “bachelor” party. He decided she would allow strippers, but no lap dances, as long as none of the strippers looked like her. Awesome. Skinny blonde strippers, it was.
“How did they even get there?” Steve suddenly asked. “I don’t think the Hulk can run that fast.”
“They borrowed the jet,” grumped Tony, pouting, jerked from his pleasant thoughts about half-naked women. “Without telling me first; JARVIS, you traitor.”
“In my defense, sir, to quote one of your favorite films, they made me an offer I couldn’t refuse.”
“You’re just on fire with the movie references today. And just what was that incredible offer?”
“Miss Lewis—or, should I say, Mrs. Banner—has promised to make me godparent to their firstborn child.”
“Ah!” exclaimed Thor. “I know of this tradition, as well. That is indeed an honor, Friend JARVIS! May you guide the young warrior in wisdom and valor.”
“Thank you, sir.”
“Better you than me, JARVIS,” said Clint.
“I quite concur, Agent Barton.”
“This is such a strange century,” said Steve, shaking his head in bemusement.
“What?” Tony cried. “That’s not fair! It’s my jet!”
“Well, sir,” said JARVIS, patiently, “perhaps, even intoxicated, Mrs. Banner realized that I would make a better godparent than you would.”
“Now, that’s below the belt, JARVIS.”
“Precisely your problem, sir.”
“Ouch. That’s hurtful. Okay, you know what? You’re not invited to the Post-Wedding-Bachelor-Party, anymore.”
“You cut me to the quick, sir.”
“Jeez, JARVIS, at least pretend it’s a punishment.”
Natasha stood up. “Well, I’ll leave you boys to your party planning.”
“Are you gonna plan Darcy’s party?” asked Tony.
Natasha raised an eyebrow at him. “Do I really look like the sort of person who’s going to plan a party involving naked men and a cake shaped like a penis, Stark?”
“Ooh!” said Tony. “That gives me an idea. Boob cake.”
“And on that note,” Natasha replied, “I’m gonna go work out. Wanna come try to beat me up, Barton?”
Clint shrugged. “Sure.” He hopped down off the chair. “Count me in for that party, Stark,” he said as he passed Tony.
“Awesome,” said Tony, raising a hand for a high five. “Thor, Cap, you guys in?”
“Most certainly!” boomed Thor, beaming. “It would be my honor to celebrate the good doctor’s fortunate union with him by drinking ale and admiring comely women!”
“That’s the spirit!” said Tony, reaching over to thump Thor on the shoulder.
“I don’t know,” said Steve doubtfully.
“Aw, come on, Cap!” Tony cajoled. “Live a little! One night of depravity isn’t gonna kill you or tarnish your lily-white reputation. It’s for the big guy!”
“If,” said Steve, slowly, “and I mean if, Bruce agrees to this, I’ll come.”
“Way to take one for the team, Captain,” said Tony. “Now…where to put the stripper poles?”
Chapter 5: You Got Me Into This
Bruce and Darcy finally leave their hotel room, and visit a casino, where somebody doesn't listen to Wesley Snipes. Also, Bruce underestimates Tony.
(See the end of the chapter for notes.)
Darcy spent the rest of the day in a glorious haze. Being married to Bruce was awesome. They’d spent the entire morning making love and feeding each other strawberries and champagne, and pretty much acting like every stereotypical newlywed that, in the past, Darcy had always scoffed at. Well, Past Her was dumb, because this Just Married thing was pretty damn great. Her inner Romantic had apparently tied up her inner Feminist and stuffed her in a closet, because Darcy grinned like an idiot every time a bellhop or the concierge called her “Mrs. Banner.” (“Banner-Lewis!” Inner Feminist tried to yell, but both Inner Romantic and Darcy ignored her). She had to keep herself from doodling “Darcy Banner,” or “Darcy + Bruce 4 EVER,” surrounded by teeny hearts, all over the notepad in their hotel room.
They’d finally ventured out of the hotel, at Bruce’s insistence. Darcy would’ve been perfectly happy to spend the entire rest of the day breaking in the bed (and the shower…and the Jacuzzi…and the rug in front of that gigantic fireplace in the corner of the suite…), but Bruce insisted that they give housekeeping time to clean the room. “Not to mention,” he’d added with a self-deprecating smile, “that I’m not exactly a young man anymore.” So they’d decided to walk around and see the sights.
It seemed that now that they were married, Bruce had lost most of his qualms about being affectionate in public. He still wasn’t quite to the ‘necking in the hallways’ stage, despite their earlier “practice session,” (Darcy totally had plans about how to rid him of the rest of his reservations in time to join the Mile-High Club on their way home), but he couldn’t seem to keep his hands off her. His fingers were constantly either resting at the small of her back, or playing with her hair, or curling softly around her own. Not that she was complaining. She hadn’t giggled or blushed this much since she was thirteen years old, looking at an issue of Seventeen with her sister, and naming all the children she was going to have with Justin Timberlake now that he’d wised up and realized that Britney Spears was totally not the right woman for him.
“So,” she said, twining her arm through his as they strolled down the Strip, “we’re in Vegas. You want to hit a casino?”
Bruce turned to look down at her. “Really,” he said. “You think it’s a good idea to stick me in a crowded, noisy, windowless room, surrounded by highly emotional people?”
“Your calm face is like, the most bitchin’ poker face in the world, babe,” she replied, reaching up to give him a smooch on the cheek. “You’ll make out like a bandit. You always do okay at Avengers Poker Night, whenever Tony doesn’t cheat.”
“And what are you going to do, be my good luck charm?” He took her hand and brought it to his lips, the curl of his smile warm against her skin. Shit, thought Darcy, barely keeping herself from giggling like a teenager again, I totally need to apologize to Jane; this hand-kissing stuff is amazing.
“I’m not showing nearly enough cleavage to be a good luck charm,” said Darcy, inwardly congratulating herself for keeping the conversation going, even as her brain was turning to mush. Inner Feminist had apparently just given up. Or maybe even she was susceptible to the power of the Hand-Kiss. “My luck is shit, anyway; I figured I’d go with the slots or something.”
“We can go if you want to,” he said. “I’m not really a gambler.”
Darcy shrugged. “Me neither, but when in Rome, you know? Might as well go blow fifty bucks or something. Who knows, maybe we’ll win enough to buy dinner.”
An hour later, Darcy bounded out of the casino, dragging Bruce behind her. “Holy shit, that was amazing!” she exclaimed. “You really did make out like a bandit!”
Bruce just smiled enigmatically. “Guess the calm face has its other uses, after all,” he said.
“Did you see the look on that dude’s face?” she asked gleefully. “The douchebag with the Ray-Bans and the faux-hawk? I thought he was gonna Hulk out when you dropped that straight on him.”
“Served him right,” Bruce replied. “He was staring at you the whole time.”
“Hmm,” said Darcy musingly. “Maybe I was good luck, after all. I wonder how much you would’ve made if I’d worn something slinky.”
Bruce frowned. “Not enough to justify letting other men ogle you.”
“I don’t know whether to be annoyed or flattered by the possessiveness in your voice right now,” Darcy said, raising an eyebrow.
“It’s okay,” she shrugged. “Just keep in mind that for every person you or the Other Guy murder in your mind for staring at my chest, there’s an imaginary dead body for anyone who checks out your ass.”
Bruce blushed. “I can’t imagine that there are that many of them.”
Darcy scoffed. “Oh, don’t even, honey. I’m contemplating making you get a tattoo to stake my claim. That blonde chick with the fake boobs that was playing roulette was totally scoping you out. She lost, like, five hundred dollars; serves her right. Hasn’t she ever seen Passenger 57? I mean, everybody knows that.”
Bruce just shook his head, lips curling in amusement. “Well, dear,” he said, changing the subject, “should we head home? I can imagine Tony’s getting antsy about the jet. And Steve is probably just plain antsy.”
Darcy sighed ruefully. “I guess. But you have to promise me that we’ll go on a real honeymoon sometime before our first anniversary. For two weeks, and to, like, Majorca or St. Bart’s, or somewhere; where I can wear a bikini.”
“I promise,” he said, kissing her hair. “As long as you promise it won’t be a string bikini. There’s only so much I can take.”
“How about I take you shopping with me and you can personally approve it?”
“That’s acceptable,” Bruce replied. “Now, let’s go home before Tony realizes that he’s too late to throw me a bachelor party.”
“Don’t be too sure about that,” said Darcy. “This is Tony Stark we’re talking about. He’ll think of something.”
While this is complete, I do have plans for a sequel (and maybe, a one-shot detailing the Not-A-Bachelor(ette) Parties).
Thank you to all who have bookmarked, subscribed, and left kudos and/or comments. You all inspired me to finish. In fact, I think this is the first WIP I've actually managed to complete in eight years of fanficcing. So, thank you!
I'd especially like to thank plathgirl, for graciously allowing (nay, ORDERING) me to almost simultaneously post a fic with the "Bruce and Darcy Got Drunk and Eloped" plot line; and to Chaerring, who encouraged me and helped me along the way.