Neither Phil nor Clint had ever cared much about Fathers' Day. Phil's had kicked him out for coming out, and Clint's had literally kicked and knocked him out on several occasions. This, combined with the fact that up until quite recently neither of them were anywhere close to being considered father material, ensured Fathers' Day was just another Sunday for them.
This year, things were...different.
Phil wakes to a gentle tug on his ear. Stifling a groan, he rolls over to face the offender. Beady black eyes stare back at him. Menace, he mouths, because speaking out loud means waking Clint and waking Clint means ruining his surprise.
Years of practice mean he's able to slip out of bed without Clint even stirring, despite the fact that he's the lightest sleeper Phil knows.
He scoops Duckeye up in his arms, and heads toward the door. Thirteen ducklings jump off the bed and follow after him.
Once in the kitchen, he pours himself coffee and feeds the ducks. He puts some waffles in the toaster, and microwaves some bacon. Clint deserves better, but Phil's never been particularly gifted in the kitchen and this is the best he can do.
A little bit of rummaging produces a tray, and he loads it up with coffee and waffles and bacon. He takes out a pen and scrap of paper that he folds before writing on and placing on the tray as well.
"Come on kids, let's go wake your dad."
The ducklings fall in line behind him as he heads back toward the elevator. It opens to reveal Tony Stark, slumped against its side. He grins as he steps forward.
"Breakfast for me? Honey, you shouldn't have!"
"Nice try, Stark. This is for Clint."
Tony freezes and Phil can see the wheels turning in his head.
"So today is..."
He's still in the same clothes he was wearing three days ago, covered in grease with his hair standing up, and Phil can see him thinking, 'Oh shit, how badly have I screwed up with Pepper this time?'
Phil takes pity on him.
"It's Fathers' Day," he says, before realizing Fathers' Day is probably Tony's least favorite holidays.
But Tony relaxes and shrugs. "Never cared much for it."
"Neither have I," Phil admits. "Lost its appeal after my father threw me out."
Tony snorts. "Yeah, right. What kind of dad wouldn't be thrilled to have you for a son?"
"The kind of dad who wanted his son to marry a nice girl and give him lots of grandchildren."
"Sucks to be him then. He's missing out on twenty-nine extraordinarily awesome grandkids and one very cool son-in-law. Then, you know, there's you. Super secret agent badass."
Phil suddenly understands why Pepper and Rhodey have stayed by Tony's side for so long.
"Thank you. That's very--"
Tony holds up a hand. "Whatever. It's probably the exhaustion talking. Everybody knows I hate you, blah blah blah. I need some coffee, so if neither of those cups are for me, we'll have to not continue this talk later."
He walks past, and as Phil enters the elevator he thinks he hears him mutter, "You're a good dad."
The moment they get back to the room Duckeye starts squacking and jumps on the bed. The other ducklings follow suit, albeit more quietly. Clint wakes up immediately and grabs the noisy offender in a hug.
"How's my favorite kid? Breakfast time already?"
"I already fed them," Phil says, setting the tray down on the bed before sitting. "And I brought you something."
Clint grins. "Oh yeah? And what's the occasion?" Then, his eyes fall on the tray and the propped up makeshift card.
Phil wonders, for a sickening moment, if he's misread recent events, if Clint would rather this day remain just another day without celebration.
And then Clint drags him forward by the collar of his t-shirt and kisses him.
"Are those frozen waffles?"
He shrugs. "I tried."
"You're a man after my heart, Phil Coulson."
"Happy Fathers' Day, Clint."
"Happy Fathers' Day, Phil."
The moment is ruined by the sudden clattering of dishes and they turn to catch sight of Duckeye, sitting on top of waffles and bacon.
"At least he didn't knock over the coffee." Clint scoops Duckeye up. "C'mere, little guy. We gotta get you cleaned up." He rolls to his feet. "Then I'm making us a real breakfast."
"I made us breakfast."
"You made us fake waffles and overcooked bacon. You get a gold star for effort, but we agreed you'd leave the cooking to me. Just be content with your place as my trophy husband."
"If you insist."
Phil never thought he'd have a reason to celebrate Fathers' Day again, but Clint has always been full of surprises.