1. Find Rachel
2. Find God awful floppy bow kitten sweater
3. Strangle former with latter
Kurt's sigh pushes his overly long bangs away from his forehead as he glares at the paper crumbled in one hand. Yes, he was desperate to avoid a return trip to Lima after graduation and yes, he needed to secure a position and a place to stay now that he wasn't a student, but what in all the realms of hell had Rachel been thinking when she applied on his behalf for a nanny position? Kurt wasn't cut out to be a nanny. He was barely cut out to own a plant. The sad little African violet in the window of his apartment spoke to that. But here he was, a month before graduation, trying to find the address on the pink paper Rachel had handed him last night.
Checking the address against the brass plaque, Kurt knocks once before opening the door and stepping into an exceedingly bland waiting area. The walls and carpet are old, and faded to a dingy uniform color that makes Kurt feel as though he has just walked into the inside of a bowl of oatmeal; The plain kind that he used to make his dad eat. The receptionist looks to be about fifty years past retirement age, but her eyes are bright and her voice steady when she speaks.
“Can I help you, young man?”
“I had an interview with a,” Kurt double checks the name, “Mr. Coulson?” And Kurt hates the way his nerves make it sound like a question.
“Ah yes, we've been expecting you, but you're a little early, dear. Please, take a seat and you'll be called when they're ready for you.”
Kurt turns and surveys the furniture, frowning at his choices. Lumpy uncomfortable sofa, lumpy uncomfortable chair, or a straight backed monstrosity that looks like a Victorian torture device. Choices, choices. He finally settles on the sofa since it gives the best view of the entrance, the office, and the receptionist. When he is settled, he pulls out his Kindle III, opening the Pulse app and scrolling through the stories.
He's made it through all the interesting tidbits from Huffpo and Gawker and moved on to Al Jazeera's story about the election of Syria's first female president when the office door swings open silently.
The man in the door frame is unremarkable in most ways, standing out only for how bland he appears and for whatever reason, that scares Kurt most of all. He waves Kurt in and gestures to the chair opposite a desk that looks like it’s left over from the cold war.
Phil sizes up the final applicant for the day. Kurt Hummel; only child of Burt and Elizabeth Hummel of Lima, OH; presumptive bachelors in art history; single. He’s not sure if this guy will end up making the final cut. His clothing marks him as kind of fastidious and life among the Avenger Spawn is anything but. Astrid alone costs him about a tie a week.
Grabbing a standard pack from his bag, he sets it on the table, sliding it toward Kurt. “First, I need your signature where indicated.” The stack of papers is roughly the thickness of a telephone book and the only sign of Kurt’s dismay is a slight frown. Flipping to the first page, he begins to read.
“I’m sorry, but are you actually reading it?”
“Well, yes. I'm not going to just sign away my soul without knowing why.”
Coulson sighs. “It’ll take several hours to read it all.”
Kurt smiles sweetly before asking, “Well, would you like me to take it home and make another appointment or are you going to give me the cliffsnotes version?”
Coulson frowns but pulls a much slimmer packet from his bag, sliding it across the table. Kurt takes it and reads the writing quickly before signing on the single line with a flourish.
“In the ten years we've had the simplified NDA you're the first to ask for it.”
“Well, I always was a trend setter.”
“Now, the reason we needed you to sign that was--”
“That I can't reveal any of what I may see, hear, or come to understand during this interview or after my departure regardless of whether or not I accept the offered position and any breach of said agreement ends with me remanded into SHIELD custody for the remained of my natural life. That about the size of it? I did actually read what you gave me. That was kind of the whole point.”
Coulson just nods as Kurt sits back arms crossed and eyebrow cocked. This kid might just be the right person for the job.
8. Flail mindlessly
“So I'll be taking care of the Avenger’s children. Five of them. Full time. I didn't even know any of them had children.”
“That’s the point. We do all we can to provide the children with as normal a childhood as possible, aside from obvious limitations.”
“Jeez. I thought my dad had it rough raising a gay son in the Bible Belt.”
“So, you cleared all of the background checks successfully. We found no ties to any known terrorist organizations, your school records are outstanding and your personal references provided extremely positive information. Pending the approval of the Avengers themselves, I’d like to offer you the position.”
“Wait. Do I have to cut off all contact with friends and family, because that's kind of a deal breaker.”
“No, but you won't be allowed to reveal any details about your job. The NDA you already signed prevents it and the employee contract is just as strict.”
“But I'll be allowed to go home for visits, and hang out with my friends, and date?”
“Pending successful background checks for your associates? Yes, to all of the above.”
When Kurt walks in, the couches are full of people. He sees a beautiful redhead with a little blond boy on each knee sitting between a man with shaggy curls wearing a glorious purple button up, and a man with possibly the most sculpted arms Kurt’s ever seen outside a Shape magazine. The bottom of the U is dominated by a huge blond (and he'd recognize that face anywhere, even if the cape is mournfully absent). To his side a pretty brunette that looks vaguely familiar is playing a clapping game with a little girl that looks like a perfect blend of the two of them.
Finally Kurt turns to the last couch where the instantly recognizable Tony Stark and Pepper Potts sit. He doesn't see any children with them and wonders where they are until the sound of screaming reaches his ears. No one looks overly concerned so Kurt stands there waiting as the sounds get closer and closer.
A small body cannonballs into the back of his knees and he throws out an arm to steady himself. When he's sure he won't be hit again he turns to see a girl with dark hair arguing with a tiny strawberry blond.
“It’s mine. Give it back.”
“No. I wanna see it.”
“But you can’t just steal it out of my hands.”
“CAN NOT!” And Kurt sees the older girl raise her hand. Without thinking, he steps between the fighting siblings.
“You shouldn’t hit him. Could you offer him something else to play with instead?”
“Who are you?” Kurt thinks that she’s awfully bossy for being so small, but them he remembers who her parents are.
“My name is Kurt, and if its OK, I think I'm supposed to hang out with you guys when your parents aren't around.”
“A nanny? I so did not sign up for that bullshit.”
The stereo call of Emerson! have the little girl spinning on her heels to face her parents. Her expression is mulish and Kurt knows that if he gets the job, winning her over is likely to be his biggest hurdle.
Across the room he sees the other little girl melt down over something her dad has just said and feels the warmth of his phone in his pocket before a shock of electricity has him yelping aloud. Or maybe not, he thinks as he stares at the smoking shell of his phone.
27. Get a COMPLETE list of all the children’s allergies
Kurt’s first night alone with all the kids is nerve wracking. He’d done the SHIELD crash course, played backup when one or two of the couples were out, but for the first time he is flying solo with all the kids and he thinks that everything is going pretty well.
They’d played a round of candyland while Kurt cooked supper and after making sure everyone had their plates and silverware and milk and extra napkins, the kids are happily digging into their pasta puttanesca. For a few minutes the kitchen is silent apart from the clink of forks and glasses, but then Dmitri drops his fork with a clatter and Kurt looks over to see him wheezing as he struggles to draw enough air past his bluish lips.
Standing up, Kurt rounds the table and bends low, trying to see what is keeping him from breathing. He can see that Dmitri's face is slightly swollen and he digs for his phone, trying to remember how to find the right number. None of the Avengers are picking up and Kurt decides to try Coulson.
The menu is still unfamiliar and he hits the 6 by accident. When the line picks up, it’s Happy and not Coulson, but Kurt just shrugs, asking Happy to get there in a hurry. Ten nerve shredding minutes later, Kurt has managed to get some benadryl down Dmitri’s throat, but he still isn’t breathing easily and when Happy calls up, Kurt rounds up the other kids and loads them into the elevator, keeping Dmitri tucked against his chest.
“Hey, Happy. We need a ride to the hospital. Dmitri’s having a little trouble.” Kurt keeps his voice calm as he straps the others in, finally settling in the back seat beside the little boy.
By the time the car reaches the hospital, the other children can feel the tension and are snapish with one another, making Kurt long for another set of hands. Finally, they make it into the emergency room and the admitting nurse calls for a doctor as soon as she sees Dmitri's face. Sweeping him through the swinging doors, Kurt is left in the waiting room to fill out forms and provide insurance and contact information.
Just as Kurt is poised to send his goodbye text to his father, the doctor pushes through the doors and approaches him.
“It’s good that you chose not to wait for an ambulance. He had an allergic reaction to something he ate. Likely something in his dinner. Do you know if he has any allergies?”
“No, I’m... I... No. His mom didn’t say anything about him being allergic to any foods. I certainly wouldn’t have given them to him if I’d known.”
“With children this young, sometimes this happens. I didn’t mean to imply a failure on your part.”
“No, just... long night, you know.”
The doctor claps a hand to Kurt’s shoulder and nods. “I have three of my own. I know.”
Just then, Natasha bursts into the ER, zeroing in on Kurt and the Doctor as they stand watching the other children.
“Dmitri? He is fine?”
“You’re the mother?”
Natasha nods, and the doctor continues. “I was just telling your husband--”
“Right, nanny. He’s fine. We pumped his stomach to get out any allergen he hadn’t digested and gave him some epinephrine. Tomorrow, he’s going to be sleepy and his throat will be sore for a few days, but he’s young and resilient. He’ll be back to fighting fit on no time.”
The next morning finds them all home and safe. The hospital calls to let them know that the allergen Dmitri reacted to was in the sardines, and between Kurt and Natasha, they have every cabinet, fridge and pantry stripped of anything fishy inside an hour. When Kurt makes it back to his room, his phone chirps at him.
>send last text?
Kurt hits ‘no’.
31: Discuss lab security with Mr. Stark
“Teagan, you get down here right now. Give Pavel back his bear.”
“No. Scary bear.”
“I understand that you don’t care for that bear, but it’s very important to him and you can't take things that don't belong to you. We’ve talked about this before.”
Kurt grumbles under his breath about the combined DNA of a CEO and a mad scientist conspiring to kill him young and thinks that at least he'll leave an attractive corpse while he tries to figure out how a three year old ended up in an air vent ten feet above him. He cocks his head to see Teagan’s feet and lets out a muffled curse. The gauntlets and boots are an unpleasant surprise and he wonders what on gods green earth gave Tony the idea that advanced propulsion in toddler sizes was a good idea.
The falling toddler has him scrambling across the room and he’s so very glad that the couch is there to break their fall as they crash onto the cushions. He hears the sound of shattering glass, but really, he has a hard time getting worked up over an ugly vase when his arms are full of squirming child and there’s a repulsor boot dangerously close to something he would very much like to keep.
Once he has them mostly correctly oriented, he quickly strips off the devices and tucks them behind his back.
“Did your dad give you the boots?”
“No, Eme did.”
“Eme got them from your daddy? Because you know you aren't supposed to go into her room without permission.”
“No, Eme builded them. She got a pair for her too.” And of course the little genius would be able to build a couple sets of miniaturized flight devices. But what if she hadn’t stopped at two sets. If he didn’t find them all now, the tower would end up filled with children rocketing around, breaking furniture and wrecking walls and hurting themselves and Kurt would disappear like he’d never even been. Frantically, Kurt cupped his hands around his mouth and bellowed.
“EMERSON MARIA STARK-POTTS, FRONT AND CENTER!”
43. Get a new phone that’s actually on the market
44. Yell at Coulson for not telling me he upgraded my phone
He’s having lunch with Blaine when his phone goes off. Making a face he pulls it from his pocket to answer it. When he touches the screen to wake it up, a projection of Coulson’s face hovers above his palm and he freezes. Does this count as a violation of his NDA? He’s not sure, so he presses a thumb over the projector lense and fumbles to turn the phone off.
Blaine doesn’t seem to notice Kurt’s panic and he’s reminded again of why they broke up. “Oh my God is that the Starkholo? Its not even out for six more months.”
Kurt forces himself to laugh. “Beta testing.” He’s still pushing buttons, trying to get the stupid thing to turn off.
“So you work for a Stark employee who can get you the hookup? Awesome.”
Finally, the phone goes still and silent.
“Yeah, awesome.” He’s going to kill Phil next time he sees him.
48. Figure out if there is some way to ward against magic
When Kurt walks into the kitchen, Tony is the only one present and only long years of seeing weird things keep him from an epic spit take.
“Kurt, why are you so... pink?”
“Because unicorns are supposed to be pink.”
“Right. Er, what? Explain more, please.”
“The kids found a scrapbook from my high school that had an old campaign poster in it and there was a picture of a unicorn and then the girls decided that unicorns were pink and Eme said if I was supposed to be a unicorn I should be pink too and then Astrid agreed and here I am. Now, I believe I have a few hours of downtime headed my way?”
“That... still doesn’t make any real sense.”
“They’re little girls. One of whom is half god and magically gifted to boot. Does it really have to make sense?”
Tony just shrugged. “I suppose it could be worse. At least you didn't end up...” The flick of movement caught his eye and he stopped, stunned silent.
“Yeah, totally ruined these jeans. I’ll just add it to the tally, I suppose.” As Kurt walks away, he tosses a final comment over his shoulder. “Honestly, I’m more upset about the glitter. It’s like the herpes of craft supplies. I’ll never get rid of it all.”
Tony doesn’t reply, already dialing Loki's number.
53. Figure out at what age one becomes a confirmed bachelor
54. Never admit to being that age
“No. He didn't make it through the background check.”
“Ohmygod, Coulson, that's the fourth one.”
“Maybe you have really bad taste?”
“There was a Mr. Anderson on the list that was cleared.”
“First, no, and second, don't call him that. It makes you sound like that guy from The Matrix.”
“Well, you'll have to bring me a higher caliber of potential dates then.”
“Ugh. At this rate Steve or Bruce will end up being my only choices.”
“You could make worse ones. Actually, you have. Several times.”
“I hate you.”
“I'm not unfamiliar with that reaction.”
66. Pick up cake
67. Pick up party favors
68. Pick up xanax refill
“What do you mean I have to plan the party? Shouldn't Ms. Romanova handle that?”
“If she wasn't in South America, I'm sure she would. Besides, you don’t have to plan it, you just have to pick up the stuff she ordered and make sure everyone has a good time.”
“But this guest list. Half of these are villains.”
“No, they’re all just children. Their parents are villains.”
Kurt just drops his face onto his palm and whimpers.
The party goes off without a hitch. All of the parents are on their best behavior and other than a quick tiff in the hallway, bloodshed is avoided. Dmitri and Pavel seem to have a good time, but Kurt sees them look at the door every time someone walks in.
After, Kurt hands out party favors as the boys thank their guests.
When the house is empty, Tony, Pepper, Thor and Jane usher their own kids off to bed and Kurt grabs a big slice of cake and two candles before snuggling down on the couch, a boy tucked in the crook of each arm.
“We’ll wait for your mom. I know she’ll be here soon because there’s no way she’d miss your birthday.”
The boys nod off around ten and Kurt follows shortly after. He comes awake at the feeling of someone lifting Pavel from his side and tightens his grip on the sleeping boy. Cracking open one eye, he sees Natasha bent over them, her still wet hair swinging forward.
“It’s just me.”
“The boys wanted to see you before their birthday was over. I let them stay up, but I guess we were all pretty wiped.”
Natasha nods at the clock. It reads 11:45 and Kurt smiles, glad she made it home, glad she didn’t miss their birthday. He helps her get them tucked into bed and after she pulls the door almost all the way closed, she turns and presses a kiss to his forehead.
“Thank you for being there for them.”
Kurt thinks he responds, but he can’t be sure.
74: Discuss appropriate language with Mr. Stark
“Astrid! Go get the clipboard and meet me in the quiet room.”
“It was an accident!”
“Once is an accident, twice is a joke, three times means I have to break out the AED and fill out paperwork. And you know the rule. Timeout until I finish the forms. Plus, now Mr. Coulson has to find a new driver to drive you to and from your dance lessons while Jeremy recovers.”
“I don’t wanna dance. I wanna take fencing, but mom says I can’t. Dancing is stupid.”
“That doesn’t mean you get to use your powers to get your way. With great power--”
Astrid’s gleeful voice cuts him off. “I’m telling. You’re not supposed to say that.”
“Uncle Tony’s still mad about it. Said the web stuff is a bitch--”
“Right, that’s enough of that.”
She drags her feet across the tile while Kurt nudges her in. The floor and walls are all covered in non-conductive material and a single wooden chair sits facing the corner. Kurt grabs the forms he needs and settles onto the floor, propping the plastic keyboard against his knees as he picks up the first form.
Cause of incident:
Kurt wonders if petulant child is an acceptable answer.
86: Remind adults about keeping bedroom activities behind closed doors
“Kurt! Kurt! Come ‘ere!”
Kurt jogs over, sure someone is missing a limb or bleeding to death. Instead he finds Emerson and Teagan giggling behind the couch.
“What’s going on?”
“Uncle Steve and Uncle Bruce were kissin.”
Kurt takes a minute to reboot his brain before he responds.
“Where were they and why were you spying on them?”
“We weren't spying. They were standing in the hall and when we got off the elevator they didn't see us. That’s all. Promise.”
Emerson’s ‘promise’ makes Kurt suspicious. “What else?”
The ‘nothing’ comes far too quickly to be genuine. “Eme... Do you remember what happens when you lie?”
“So, what else?”
“Just, Teagan followed them through the vents and they were kissing all over the place. Why’d they wanna do that? Kissing is gross.”
“Yeah, it can be.” Kurt sighs. If someone had told him a year ago that he’d be explaining privacy to a five year old, he would have laughed in their face.
“Alright, here’s the deal: I can’t keep you out of the vents. I know that. But if you stay out of the vents by he bedrooms,I’ll let you decide how we spend our saturdays for the next three months. Deal?”
Both kids nod their agreement and Kurt claps his hands before pushing himself back up to standing.
“Right, you tell the others and I’m going to go talk to your folks. Remember, I’ll know if you break your promise. JARVIS will tell me.
Kurt walks away to the sound of little whispers trying to decide where they’ll spend their Saturdays. He can’t think of anything but the coming conversation with the Avengers and he just prays he can get through it without too many extraneous mental images.
100. Send Rachel the most amazing thank you gift I can find