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No Pain, No Gain

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“One – two – cross – kick. Knee – block – jab – jab!”

Tony Stark bounces while he calls out the sequence, watching his students for proper form. The bags they're working with are heavy, and most of his class members, while fairly advanced, are still twice-a-week participants, and the thunks he always hopes to hear would be more aptly described as – well, actually, he doesn't know what that sound is, but it's kind of weak.

“Come on, people,” he says, raising his voice and adding a spin-kick into the mix. “You gotta burn it to earn it!”

He regrets it as soon as it comes out of his mouth – not because it's cheesy. Oh, no, he prides himself on cheesy. But Clint Barton is leaning against the studio door, a big shit-eating grin on his face as he watches, and Tony's going to have to put a dollar in the Rhyme Jar. Shit.

But the locals like the rhymes, so he's mostly just mad he got caught.

He glares at Clint, executes another spin kick, and keeps up a steady litany of instruction. They're almost at the end of the class.

“Okay, people. I wanna make you cry, so hit it double time! Let's see those manful tears! Kick – cross – knee – block – jab – cross – spin – cross – jab – jab – jab!”

He keeps them moving until the sweat starts to pour into his eyes, then he leads a cool-down jog in place and some stretches.

Tony has two more classes scheduled for today, though, so as he bids the last of the students farewell, he starts resetting the room.

Tony's kickboxing classes are a pretty popular choice among the members of Fury's Gym, but his afternoon class will be slow so he carefully starts pulling down some of the heavy bags. His classes always go better when he has a good line of sight, and rather than having ten people trying to peer around thirty bags, he'd rather take some of them down.

It's hard work – they are called heavy bags for a reason – but he doesn't mind it. He's just glad Fury's has a dedicated kickboxing studio. The last gym he taught at, he'd had to share the room with a step class and a Zumba class, so he had to take the bags down after every session.

But Fury's is a pretty big operation. Tony knows Nick Fury, the owner, has received more than one offer to purchase from a large conglomerate, but he's yet to take an offer. He tells the staff he's not ready to retire (well, actually, his exact words were “I'm too young to fucking retire, why the fuck would I sell the gym?” and “ I'll sell it when I'm fucking dead, or when all of your assorted bullshit kills me,” but that's irrelevant), but there's a part of Tony that thinks Fury just likes being the owner of the coolest gym in the city.

And it is a really cool gym. There's even a competition-sized pool off the north side, and Fury employs a full-time personal swim coach for platinum members.

And the tech. Oh, the tech is like some kind of wet dream for Tony. Sure, half of it's his – he's designed a couple of personal fitness monitors that members can rent while they're working out, and he's even tweaked a couple of the more popular cardio machines so they're more intuitive to the user's needs – but the point is Fury lets him use it. Encourages it. Asks if Tony's come up with anything else cool to help put Fury's further ahead of the pack.

And yeah, Fury pays him a commission, but Tony doesn't need the money. He's never really needed the money, he just wants a job with weird, part-time hours so he has time to play with his tech.

He puts the last of the removed heavy bags up against the wall in the corner, turns out the lights and leaves the room. He's got a couple hours to kill, and he's pretty sure the steam room is calling his name.

Tony swings by the juice bar, and orders a chocolate cherry smoothie while Wanda Maximoff, the juice girl, shakes her head at him.

“You know, Stark, this is probably the least healthy option on our menu,” she reminds him in her soft Slavic accent as she hands him the drink.

“I don't drink it for my health, Kewpie doll. It's the only thing you've got behind that counter with caffeine in it.” He takes a loud, slurping drink from his styrofoam cup while he wiggles his fingers at her in a wave and walks away.

“That's not good for you, either. I could add matcha to any drink here,” she calls after him, laughter in her voice.

“You're such a hipster,” he says, turning around again so he's walking away backwards. “Matcha tastes like feet, and you should be ashamed.”

Wanda just laughs at him.

Tony makes his way to the staff locker room, and finds it empty. He pulls his sweaty shirt over his head and toes off his shoes, and makes his way toward the shower.

He doesn't really need to shower before a steam, but he knows he smells like a mound of week-old gym socks, and he doesn't want to subject anyone to that.

He finishes undressing before he slips under the hot spray, and does a quick, half-assed soaping job. He rinses his hair and puts his things away in his locker before he wraps a fluffy white towel around his waist and takes the service door to the little alcove that gets him to the main entrance of the men's steam room.

He grabs a bottle of water from the cart outside the door, and goes inside.

“Hey, Tones, good to see you! How was your class?”

Tony peers through the vapour to spot James Rhodes sitting against the back wall, on the second bench. Rhodey's been a member at Fury's for three years, and was in fact integral to Tony getting this job. He moves to sit next to him.

“Class was good, Sugar Butt. How's it going?”

They make small talk for a while, and Tony lets the steam seep heat into his pores.

“I've got news, motherfuckers!” Clint announces gleefully as he comes into the steam room a little while later. Tony had just been planning to leave and get some fresh air ahead of his next class, but Clint always has all the details on the good gossip before anyone else even knows it exists, so he decides a few more minutes won't hurt.

Clint teaches a twice a week specialized obstacle course fitness class, and the rest of the time he's a personal trainer. Between talking to so many gym members one-on-one, being back and forth from the front desk so often, and his ability to lip-read from eighty feet, he's usually a pretty accurate source.

He flops down on the bench in front of Tony and Rhodey, and the only other lone patron in the steam room pushes the door open and leaves, so it's just the three of them. Clint stretches back and leans away so he can look Tony and Rhodey in the face.

“Nick finally accept an offer on this place?” Rhodey guesses.

Clint smirks at him. “Not a chance.”

“Pietro finally figured out you're an asshole and dumped your ass?” Tony tries, softening the barb with a half-smile and a wink.

“Even less of a chance, Pietro thinks I'm amazing.”

“Well, I'm not making any more guesses – you wouldn't have barged in here like that if you weren't itching to tell someone what you know,” Tony says, crossing his arms.

Clint just looks him in the eye while the smile on his face broadens.

“Nat's seein' somebody.”

Tony rolls his eyes. “Have you ever looked at Natasha? Of course she's seeing somebody, she has to beat them back with a stick.”

“No, no, she's seeing somebody. As in she's having a relationship.”

Tony and Rhodey look at one another for a beat. “You mean she found someone she could stand for more than three days?”

Clint bounces, practically clapping his hands with excitement. “They've been dating for two months.”

Tony slaps a hand down on knee, the sound muffled by his towel. “I knew it! She's been so scary and angry and – wait, no, I've noticed nothing outside the norm. Are you sure?”

“Well, considering the conversation I had with her not twenty minutes ago, I'm pretty sure.” His voice switches to a high falsetto. “'Oh, Clint, he's so gorgeous and sweet and nice and you're going to love him so much'!”

Rhodey does his best, but he's not able to keep the snort in. Tony just drops his chin and looks up at Clint through his eyelashes.

“Okay, so it was more like I found out because I saw a text come in on her phone, and someone called her 'babe', and she told me if I said anything to anyone she would drown me in the pool, and she'd make sure no one knew what happened to me.”

“So you came in here to tell us?” Tony grins.

“Well, now you'll know what happened to me when I turn up missing.”

“If you think I'm testifying against Natasha Romanoff, you are seriously mistaken.”

“So that's it? That's your big news, though?” Rhodey pipes up. “I feel like you really didn't deliver on this whole 'gossip' thing. Some nebulous guy who texts and calls her 'babe'?”

“Which, if he's still alive now, is impressive,” Tony points out.

“The good part's still coming,” Clint says. “She's convinced him to join the gym. So he's going to start coming here. And we're going to get to meet him.”

Tony stares at him for a moment.

“Am I the only one who never thought I'd live to see the day? Natasha's going to introduce us to her boyfriend.”

Rhodey shakes his head. Tony shrugs. “You have to admit, it's pretty unprecedented.”

“Oh, muster up some enthusiasm,” Clint says.

“I'm just saying,” Tony says as he stands to leave. “Once we've actually met him, and we have proof of life after their first fight, then we can get excited.”

“Whatever. Nat's in love, and there'll be a wedding by spring, I'm telling you.”

Tony snorts. “That, I'd pay to see,” he says as he walks out of the steam room to get ready for his next class.

“And don't think I forgot what you said in your class this morning,” Clint calls after him. “You owe the Rhyme Jar a dollar!”


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Tony strides into the Wednesday morning meeting late, as per usual. Fury glares at him, as per usual. Tony gives a jaunty, unrepentant wave – as per usual.

“Why, thank you, Mister Stark, for deigning to join us this morning,” Fury says, leaning across his desk. “We do so love it when you see fit to show up.”

“Oh, yeah, sorry, not sorry. I had something really important going on. Super-important.”

He sees Natasha roll her eyes, and Clint tries to hold back a smirk. No one else reacts.

Then Tony spots Bruce Banner on the other side of the room and lunges forward, pulling the yoga instructor into a bear hug. “Brucie! You're home!”

“Hi, Tony,” he says, grinning.

“How was your Cunnilingus workshop?”

“Kundalini, Tony. You know it's kundalini.”

“My way's better.”

“Are you done?” Fury's voice hits a fun new pitch, and Tony's pretty proud of himself because it took less than a minute today.

Not that he's going to stop.

“Are you? Did I miss the part where you tell us all to sell lots of memberships yet? Or do you still need to get there?”

Fury sighs, and pinches the bridge of his nose. “All right, fine. Sell memberships, have good classes, and I'm still waiting for everyone's schedules for next month, Tony, so Maria can build the program schedule.”

Tony shrugs. “I'll have it on your desk tomorrow. Latest, day after. Scout's honour.”

Everyone shuffles out of Fury's office, and Maria Hill, the manager and membership coordinator, falls into step beside Tony. “I do not understand how you still have a job,” she says with a pointed glare. “Literally no one else here could talk to Nick like that and still be able to come to work in the morning, and you do it on a regular basis.”

Tony smirks. “Nicky has a soft spot for me. I make sure all his machines run better than any other gym, and they have more features. He'd wither and die without me.”

“I hardly think that's true,” Maria says, breaking off to move toward her own office.

Tony jogs a little to catch up to Bruce and puts an arm around his neck in a light headlock. “Did you miss me?”

Bruce chuckles at him. “I always miss you,” he says, deadpan. “Are you going to come to my class today?”

Tony rocks a hand back and forth. “I'm currently undecided.”

“Have you been practicing at all while I was gone?”

Tony rocks that same hand again. “Well, two days after you left there was this redhead, really athletic, we got flexible –”

“Oh, God, Tony,” Bruce chides, rubbing his forehead. “Sex isn't yoga, I've told you that.”

“No, but it's fun.” Tony wiggles his eyebrows up and down lecherously.

“You really should come to practice this afternoon. It'll be a nice, quiet class, you can really focus.”

Tony lets out a put-upon sigh. He knows he'll end up going, because it's Bruce. He's not actually very good at yoga, but the afternoon class is quiet, and Bruce will just give him a disappointed look if Tony doesn't go.

He still feels the need to have put up a little bit of a fight.

“Fine, fine. If you insist. I will come and be a shining light of all that's good in your sad little afternoon class.”

“It's a yin class, it will be easy on you. If you haven't been practicing for the last two weeks, you'll need it.”

Tony waves off with a salute and heads toward the locker room to change for his first class of the morning. He still has lots of time to set up, but he hates to be rushed.


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Steve Rogers unpacks the last grocery bag before turning toward the sofa, where his best friend, Bucky Barnes, is munching on a Power Bar.

“What time is Natasha coming over?” Steve asks him. Natasha, Bucky's girlfriend, has been coming over most evenings for the last month. Steve likes her, thinks she's good for Bucky, but he also doesn't want to hang around being the third wheel.

“'Bout eight,” Bucky says around his mouthful. “We're just gonna watch a movie. You don't have to leave.”

Steve rolls his eyes, turning back to the fridge to pull out a bottle of water. “Buck, you and I both know that halfway through, you two will devolve into a make-out session and I'm going to leave the room, and not be able to finish watching the movie.”

Bucky shrugs with a grin. “Maybe this time we'll get all the way through.”

Steve just snorts. “No, it's fine. I was going to take my camera out and go get some night shots of the bridge, anyway.”

“Cool. Listen, you know how Natasha said we could have a two week trial period at that gym she works out of? I think I'm gonna go tomorrow. You in?”

Steve wants to argue, he does. Fury's Gym is he coolest gym in the city – all the machines are practically smarter than he is. It even has a pool. All that has to mean big dollars, and he's not sure he wants to shell out that kind of money for a gym membership when he's trying to concentrate on his art right now. But he also knows how good it will be for Bucky to go.

So he agrees.


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Steve walks from one end of the bridge to the other, bringing his Canon up to his face every few feet to try a different angle. He's not sure what it is he's looking for, but he wants to get as many reference shots as he can muster. He's taking a few steps backward, camera pointed upward, when he backs directly into someone.

“Oh, God, I'm so sorry,” he says, whirling around. He blinks. The man he's run into is gorgeous. Dark hair, sculpted goatee, tight T-shirt showing off sinewy muscles. Steve feels a flush build in his cheeks. “I should have been watching where I was going.”

The man looks him up and down, and smirks. “But then you wouldn't have got your shot.” He waves vaguely at the camera Steve's still holding up. His eyes are dancing.

Steve meets his gaze. “That's true. There's no accounting for artistic integrity.”

“So you're a pro?”

“Oh, no. Just getting some reference shots.”

The dark-haired man's smirk becomes a half-smile. “Reference for what?”

“I'm a painter,” Steve says, shrugging.

“Nice.” The man holds out a hand. “Tony Stark,” he says with a nod.

Steve shuffles his camera to his other hand and take's the other man's. “Steve Rogers.” He's glad his palms are dry, but the contact of the other man's skin causes his mouth to go dry, too. Tony's thumb brushes a small swirl on the back of his hand softly, and Steve feels a tingle go straight to the pit of his stomach.

“So you're an artist. Paint anything I might know?”

Steve gives a wan smile. “I'm not famous or anything. I scrape by. There's this little gallery down on Seventh Avenue that's pretty good about showing my stuff.”

“Do you just paint bridges? Or do you branch out?”

“Oh, mostly bridges. I like the lines.”

Tony stares at him for a beat. “I'm kidding. I paint lots of things. A lot of portraits.”

It's then that Steve realizes Tony still has his hand.

He swallows, and starts to take his hand back. Opens his mouth. “Do you –”

“Wanna go get a drink?” Tony says at the same time. They grin at one another.

Steve ducks his head. “Sure.”

It's a short walk to a little pub on 28th Street. Tony holds the door open for him, and Steve thinks it's silly but also adorable.

Tony orders a scotch from the woman who comes to their table, and Steve asks for a beer.

“Nothing harder?” Tony asks him, flippantly but genuinely curious.

“Not much of a drinker. I don't like the hard stuff,” Steve shrugs.

Tony just nods and leans forward, lacing his fingers together on the table. “So what else should I know about you, Steve Rogers?”

“What else? You don't know anything yet.”

“Well, I know you're an artist. I know your name. I know you like to take photos but you don't consider yourself a professional.” The server comes back with their drinks, and Steve tips the neck of his bottle at Tony in salute, but Tony's still speaking. “I know there's a gallery on Seventh that sells your art. I know you don't always look where you're going. I know you have the most intense blue eyes I've ever seen, and a gorgeous ass, and I know I wanna take you home with me tonight.”

Steve blinks at him, blushing furiously. He takes a few moments to convince sound to come out of his throat.

“Seems like an awful lot in a pretty short amount of time,” he says. He's pretty impressed his voice doesn't crack.

“I can be really attentive.”

Steve's breath hitches.


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Steve only drinks half his beer, and Tony pays for the drinks. He knows it's a mistake, he doesn't know this guy at all, but something about the night, about the way Tony looks at him, those eyes burning into his with purpose and desire – it's a mistake, but he's going to make it anyway.

They walk a few blocks to Tony's apartment. They don't talk much, but every once in a while Tony steps a little closer to him and bumps his shoulder while they walk. Every few steps, Steve thinks about changing his mind. He doesn't do one night stands. He's never gone home with a guy he's known for less than an hour. Tony could be a serial killer – or he could have a sex dungeon!

Steve realizes he's not sure if that idea scares him or excites him.

When did he turn into such a tramp?

Tony's building is nestled in between two much taller complexes, and Steve has the giddy thought that the distressed brickwork of the structure would make a nice texture to add to his work. He doesn't have much time to think about it because instead of opening the door, Tony pushes Steve back against it and presses their lips together in a sudden, heated kiss.

It starts as a struggle for dominance. Their lips mash, teeth clacking together, and Tony's hands snake up to hold Steve's face between calloused fingers. Steve lets out a soft sound, and then the kiss changes. It grows softer, and Tony's tongue licks gently at his lips, requesting entry.

Steve grants it, and Tony slides his tongue along the inside of Steve's bottom lip, soliciting another quiet moan.

Tony slowly winds the kiss down, breaking it and resting his forehead against Steve's while they catch their breath.

“Still wanna come up?” Tony asks, his voice low.

Steve throws caution to the wind, and gently runs his fingertips along Tony's abs. He leans forward and nips a quick peck on Tony's lips. “Yeah.”

When they get up the elevator and into the apartment, Tony moves to the fridge.

“Can I get you something to drink?” he asks, opening the door and peering over it at Steve. “I have beer, water, grapefruit juice...”

“Water's fine,” Steve says, and he's starting to get nervous again. His mouth is dry, so when Tony hands him the bottle of water he takes two quick swigs.

Then Tony's in his face again, gently taking the water from his grasp. Instead of bringing their lips together, though, this time Tony leans in and presses a wet, open-mouthed kiss right against Steve's Adam’s apple. He swallows audibly, and Tony lets his tongue lick a trail up to Steve's jawbone, then nips gently at it with his teeth.

Tony's hand slides up under Steve's shirt, baring his navel, and Steve shivers when Tony runs a palm along the ridges of his abs.

“I knew these would be incredible,” Tony murmurs into his neck, behind his ear, before trailing his lips back to Steve's mouth. Steve's not sure what to do with his hands, so he settles them on Tony's waist, pressing his thumbs into solid hip bones.

Tony pulls back a little, grins. “What do you think, Gorgeous? Rough or gentle?”

“I – I don't know,” Steve gasps, trying to concentrate while Tony's fingers graze just under the waistband of his jeans.

“Okay, top or bottom?” Tony nips at his jaw again.

“I don't – I've never –”

Tony stills, takes a deliberate step back, meeting Steve's eyes. “You're not a virgin, are you?”

There's no judgment there, but Steve feels defensive anyway. He takes a step forward, not wanting to break contact with Tony.

“No, no. Nothing like that. I just – I don't usually go home with strangers.” He swallows.

“Oh,” Tony shrugs. “I do.”


“I like sex. I don't feel bad about it.”

“No, no, you shouldn't. That's...”

“Okay, things are getting awkward,” Tony says, leaning back into Steve's personal space. He presses forward so his lips are almost, not quite, brushing Steve's own. “Cards on the table, here. I don't like entanglements. I don't do relationships. So you have two options here. You can either turn around and walk out the door – no harm, no foul. Or, you can kiss me, and we can take this to the bedroom and you can enjoy some really hot casual sex. No regrets.”

Steve smirks a little at him. “How do you know it's going to be really hot?” he asks cheekily.

Tony looks him up and down, with an obvious glint in his eye. “With that body? Big guy, just looking at you is rocking my world.”

Steve blushes a little, and hesitates. Tony hasn't moved. He knows he only has to move forward a quarter of an inch, and they'll be pressed together, lips to knees. He glances down at Tony's full mouth, soft and pink and wet. It makes Steve want to lick them – so he does. Makes a decision. Swipes his tongue along the top lip, then the bottom, then pulls Tony's bottom lip in between his teeth, gently, and suckles it.

Tony makes a triumphant, pleasure-filled sound in the back of his throat, and presses his hips forward against Steve's. Steve can feel him, hard and wanting, and puts his hands back on Tony's hip bones to keep him flush against him.

Tony starts walking backward, pulling Steve with him, not breaking the kiss while he leads them toward the bedroom. When they get through the door, Steve starts pulling at Tony's shirt, pushing it up his chest, trying to bare that smooth, warm skin.

Tony breaks the kiss to help, pulling the shirt all the way over his head. Steve moves forward, to touch, to kiss, but Tony keeps him at arm's length and starts pulling at Steve's clothes.

“Take off your shirt,” he tells Steve while he works at the buttons of his jeans. Steve has to breathe for a moment when the backs of Tony's fingers brush against his straining cock. He swallows, and moves to pull his shirt over his head while Tony pushes his jeans down off his hips.

Steve remembers, too late, that he's wearing his tacky American flag boxers, the ones an old boyfriend had bought him for a joke, and ducks his head.

“Fuck, you even make those look good,” Tony huffs out, half laughing, but with a twinkle in his eye that steals away any derision in the words.

“I wasn't exactly expecting anyone to see them,” Steve reminds him, stepping forward. “Why, what's on your underwear?”

Tony raises his arms out to the side in welcoming invitation, and Steve takes it, making short work of the fastenings of Tony's jeans and pushing them down over his hips, to reveal – bare skin. A hot, hard cock, jutting straight out from Tony's body, as though trying to reach for Steve.

Steve lets out a strained breath.

Tony grins. “Not wearing any.”

Steve steps forward and lets his body press against Tony's, a shiver going through him at the feel of Tony's skin against his. He can feel Tony's cock on his thigh, rigid and thick.

“You given any thought to that top or bottom question?” Tony asks him huskily.

“I don't – which do you...?”

Tony looks up at him through dark eyelashes with a low voice. “I generally don't mind either, but if I'm completely honest, I've been obsessed with your ass all night.”

“O-okay,” Steve nods, almost a reflex, leaning down to catch Tony's lips in a kiss.

And as passionate as their kisses have been this evening, this one is somehow deeper. Tony slows it down, so while it's still full of fervour, it's slow and languid, making desire burn low in Steve's belly.

Tony turns them, gently pushing Steve backwards toward the bed, hands roaming over bare skin with just the barest hint of contact. Steve's hands mirror the actions against Tony's skin without thought. Every time he hits a new body part, though, he clutches at it, gripping and squeezing as though trying to take it into himself.

Steve feels the mattress hit the back of his thighs, and Tony's hands rest on the top of his shoulders, gently pushing him down into a sitting position, then back so he falls against the red duvet.

Tony's hands graze his hip reverently, then Tony's over him, hip to hip.

Steve lets out a quiet whine and takes his hands off Tony's belly to push at his boxers.

Tony helps him, and then they're both blessedly naked, sliding up the bed together, mouths still sliding together heatedly.

Tony's hand slides to his hip, his thumb tracing teasing circles around the bone there, tracing the groove where Steve's thigh joins his torso. That thumb lightly grazes the blonde hairs growing there, and Steve has a moment to thank God he'd trimmed everything recently. His hips shift, trying to bring Tony's hand closer to his erection, and the motion brings his cock into contact with Tony's. He breathes in a gasp, and Tony moans into his mouth.

Steve pulls away, to beg, to plead, to encourage, but his words are cut off by Tony's.

“You're fucking gorgeous like this, you know that? Spread out under me, keening for it?” Steve shudders at Tony's whispered praises, one hand clutching the bedding while the other wraps around Tony's lower back, trying to pull him closer.

“I wanna put my mouth on you, just everywhere, you taste so good,” Tony murmurs, trailing open-mouthed kisses down Steve's neck. Steve breathes, and moans, and shifts his hips, wrapped in Tony's words.

Tony's mouth moves lower, tongue flicking at one pink nipple. He puffs air across it and watches it pucker for him. “You're so sensitive, too,” he says. “Oh, we're going to have so much fun, you and me.”

“You always such a fucking tease?” Steve strains out, and Tony laughs, the warm air floating across Steve's nipple again.

Tony looks up at him, sliding down, meets his eye. “I think I like getting you riled up,” he says, warm air caressing Steve's cock. “I wanna make you lose your mind.”

“You –” Steve's retort is broken off into a quiet gasp as Tony's tongue licks at the skin beside his sac, thumbs tracing patterns on the inside of Steve's thighs while he gently pushes them apart, baring more of Steve to him. Steve feels warm air ghost over his perineum, and reaches down to touch Tony, somewhere, anywhere. Tony takes a hand from Steve's hip, links their fingers together, and Steve shudders when Tony's mouth moves lower.

Oh, he hadn't been prepared for this feeling at all. That hot, wet tongue tracing patterns around the rim of his entrance, the puckered skin there trembling in anticipation. But that tongue doesn't enter him, doesn't breach him, and Steve moans as it moves away, moans harder when it slides up the length of his cock, swirling at the head to pick up the bead of precome at the tip.

“Oh my God, you're going to kill me,” he gasps, hand squeezing Tony's in desperation. He feels Tony's chuckle, then soft lips on his belly, under his navel, kissing there now.

“Told you,” Tony says quietly, between kisses. He dips his tongue into the dip of Steve's navel, letting Steve's cock brush against the coarse hair of his goatee. Steve's legs shake, and he stops clutching the sheets with his free hand and goes to card it through Tony's hair, trying to push him closer to his cock.

Tony dodges the hand, pulling his head back but letting his own free hand caress the dips of Steve's abs soothingly. “Tell me what you want.”

Steve lets out a breathless laugh. “You know what I want, Jesus.”

“Say it, baby. Wanna hear you ask for it.”

Steve's surrounded by the heady scent of his own arousal, his face burning but he can't stop himself, he wants Tony's mouth so bad he – “Please, please, your mouth, Tony, let me in,” he gasps, the teasing rasp of Tony's fingertips on the base of his cock both too much and not enough.

And then Tony's mouth is on him, sliding down wetly, slickly, until Steve can feel his cock nudge the back of Tony's throat. Tony's hand holds his hip, holds it down, and Steve thanks any deities who may be listening for that, because it's all that keeps him from thrusting up. Then Tony raises up, that slick slide exposing skin, and back down again, and Steve realizes it's a rhythm but he can't track it, he feels too good, his brain misfiring because Tony's mouth is like fire.

He wants to stop this – wants to lift Tony off his cock, press their mouths together again, touch every inch of him, but he can't. It's too good, too all-consuming. Every time Tony's mouth slides down on him, it goes further. Tony hasn't taken his whole length in, of course not, but he's making a damned good effort and his hand is making up the difference, and Steve knows he's too close, he has to stop Tony now or he won't – “Oh, God, stop, stop, Tony, stop,” he gasps, trying to push Tony's head away. Tony backs off, looking up at him, and the way he looks... pupils dark with desire, lips full, swollen, red, wet. Steve swallows, panting harshly.

“You okay, Handsome?”

“I just – I didn't want to –”

Tony gives him a small, knowing smile. “You could, you know. I don't mind.”

Steve shudders, forcing himself to sit up. He hauls Tony up with him, moves them until they're kneeling together, Steve leaning forward to taste Tony's lips again, his hand wrapping itself around Tony's cock, and he's so hard, silky skin damp at the top where Tony's been leaking from the slit.

“I want you to –” he cuts himself off, he knows he should be able to say it, to ask for what he wants but he's suddenly embarrassed, can't bring himself to ask to get fucked.

But Tony knows what he wants, and pushes him back down to the mattress and reaches for the drawer in the stand beside the bed, pulls it open and pulls out a condom and lubricant.

Tony presses his lips to Steve's, and it's incredibly gentle, soft and wet but almost chaste.

“You're sure, then?” he says, quietly, his thumb tracing Steve's bottom lip as he pulls back just enough to speak.

Steve nods wordlessly.

“Say it out loud for me,” Tony counters, the tip of his thumb dipping into Steve's mouth. Steve licks it with a sigh.

“Yes, I'm sure.”

Tony captures his mouth again with a kiss, tongue delving deep even as Steve can hear the snick of a plastic cap flipping open. The kiss is demanding, and the slick fingertips nudging at his entrance a moment later are gentle, inquisitive. Steve can't help it, his hips shift and he grinds back toward those questing fingers, letting out a long, shuddering moan when one breaches him, feeling that gentle almost-stretch of intrusion.

Another finger, another moan. “You're so hot, baby,” Tony whispers against his lips, fingers not stopping. “So tight inside. Gonna let me in?”

“Yes, yes, yes,” Steve murmurs, fingers clutching Tony's shoulders spasmodically. “Want you.”

“Gorgeous like this,” Tony says, disjointed. “Slick you up, gonna stretch you out,”

“Jesus –”

A third finger, and Steve can't stop shaking, feels like he's going to burst apart, and Tony pulls away, Steve chases him, pulls him back so their mouths are sealed together, and Tony pulls away again, eliciting a whine from Steve.

Tony chuckles, fingers still thrusting gently into Steve's body, and holds up the condom with his free hand. “Just trying to get this on, baby. Wanna fuck you.”

Steve's beyond embarrassment now, knows he should blush at his own need, but he can't bring himself to care. He just knows he needs Tony, this stranger, this gorgeous, sensuous man, to be inside him now.

He deftly snatches the condom out of Tony's hand, ripping the package open and rolling latex down Tony's cock, and Tony's fingers twitch, losing their perfect rhythm, and Tony's eyes flutter closed. Steve feels proud for a moment, that his touch can wring that reaction out of him, but it also causes a shiver of desire in him, somehow turning him on even more.

Then Tony's rolling him over, using his thumbs to pull apart Steve's cheeks, and cool air on Steve's sensitive skin makes him shudder. He pushes his hips up, feels Tony's cock nudging at him, and pushes back.

Stretch, burn, penetration, and Tony's hands reach for his, fingers curling through Steve's own, pressing their palms into the mattress while he sinks all the way in.

“Oh, Gorgeous, I knew you'd be good, so good,” Tony whispers into his ear, pushing forward, flush against Steve's backside, and peppering gentle kisses across Steve's shoulder blades.

It burns, yes, it's been a while, but the stretch is so good, the way Tony's cock is filling him, slick-sliding deep inside, out a little, then back in, hips ratcheting up their rhythm while Steve has to push back, try to keep Tony inside him, not let him go.

Tony thrusts forward a little harder on the next one, and a strangled noise wrenches its way out of Steve's throat, in harmony with a low moan from Tony's.

Steve feels wet, lubricant gliding between them, tacky where their bodies meet.

Tony's thrusts are picking up speed, his hips accelerating, pushing harder, and Steve is crying out with each thrust because the angle has changed, and the head of Tony's cock is skating across his prostate now, each thrust causing white sparks behind his eyes, even though they're closed. Steve opens them, sees Tony's white knuckles, his own between them, pressed into the bedding, and hears Tony's harsh panting in his ear. There are words, he knows, but he can't pick them out of the din – catches the odd one, like 'hot' and 'good' and 'tight' and knows from the timbre of Tony's voice that he's close, worshiping Steve's body with his own.

“Please, please, please,” he hears from himself, the words coming without his approval, but he doesn't care, because Tony is pushing into him harder, and all the air is out of his lungs, he's taking deep gasps, trying to get oxygen because there is nothing but Tony here, nothing but Tony's body in his, over his, around him.

The friction of his cock on the bedding, the feeling of Tony's dark beard rasping against his shoulder, of Tony stretching and filling him and thrusting into him, finally, too soon, pushes him over the edge, and he can feel the blanket beneath him dampen with his release, can feel himself clenching around Tony's cock, and Tony lets out a sound that is not a word, but it is, somehow, hips stuttering but still thrusting, the aftershocks of Tony against his prostate making Steve cry out with each push, until finally, finally Tony slumps over him, hot breath puffing over his spine.


• • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • •


It's early when Steve wakes, and he watches the morning sunlight filter in to glow on Tony's skin. He presses forward with a kiss to Tony's chest before he even thinks about it, or the fact that it will surely wake Tony up.

Tony does wake up with a quick intake of breath. Takes a moment to look around him, eyes settling on Steve. After a moment, he smiles. “Hey. Morning,” he murmurs, voice heavy with sleep. He presses a quick kiss to Steve's temple.

Steve glances down, traces a finger over the scar in the centre of Tony's chest. He'd noticed it, briefly, last night, but he'd been ... distracted.

“What's this from?” he asks.

Tony shrugs a little, but he doesn't tense. “Heart transplant scar.”

Steve looks up at him in shock. “You're joking.”

Tony laughs. “Nope. Congenital heart defect when I was small. Got a new one when I was sixteen.”

Steve presses a gentle kiss to the centre of the scar, and Tony shivers almost imperceptibly.

“That must have been difficult,” Steve says.

Tony shrugs again, stretching. “The difficult part was before. Couldn't do anything. Couldn't even walk up a set of stairs. Afterwards – well, it was a new lease on life, right?”

Steve nods in understanding.

“That's why I took up boxing,” Tony says.

“You box?”

“I used to. Amateur – they wouldn't take me in the pro circuit because of the ticker,” he explains, tapping his sternum a couple of times. “Now I teach boxing and kickboxing.”

“I've never tried it.”

“It's great. Strength, speed, you get to hit stuff.”

Steve laughs, pressing a kiss to Tony's nipple. Tony's shiver is is a little more pronounced this time.

“Ah, shit, I gotta go to work,” Tony grumbles, looking at the clock and moving to get up. “I have an early class.”

“You can't skip it?”

Tony gives him a regretful grin. “Sadly, Gorgeous, I cannot.” He slides out of bed, casually strides across to the bathroom with no thought toward his nakedness.

He's in there for a few minutes, and comes out brushing his teeth, and tosses something on the bed on his way by, out of the room. Steve glances at it, and it's a brand-new toothbrush, in plastic packaging. He tries not to think about how Tony happens to have extra toothbrushes in his bathroom. Tony had said he was... he liked one-night stands. If anything, Steve thinks, a toothbrush is considerate.

Tony comes back into the room, back to the bathroom, and spits out toothpaste. He's back in the bedroom, and pulls work-out pants out of a drawer. Slips them on, hitching them around his waist, and Steve feels his dick harden. Tony gives him a knowing smirk, and pulls a T-shirt on over his head. He leaves the room again, and comes back with two full cups of coffee.

“You take anything in your coffee?”

Steve shakes his head, accepting the mug gratefully.

Tony takes a sip of his own, nodding toward the bathroom.

“Feel free to shower. You can let yourself out when you're ready, just lock the door behind you.” Tony puts his mug down and grabs a hoodie from the floor. Slips into it. “I had fun.”

Steve realizes he's leaving. Already. Shit.

“Wanna have lunch?” he blurts out. His cheeks flush.

Tony smiles back at him, and is that pity?

“Listen, Gorgeous, we talked about this. I don't do lunch,” he says, gently, sitting on the edge of the bed. “You're amazing, you are, but I don't do boyfriends. I do flings.”

Steve feels embarrassed, nods. “I know. I just thought – sorry, that was stupid.”

Tony lifts his chin. “Not stupid,” he says, meeting Steve's eyes. “No regrets, right?”

Steve nods, gives a little smile. “No regrets.”