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Sweep the Kitchen

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Phil finds himself coming to consciousness slowly. The morning is quiet and still, too early for alarms and thankfully free of ringing phones. With Clint a warm presence along his back and a firm pillow cradling his head, Phil lets himself drift and luxuriate in this rare moment of complete contentment.

All too soon certain needs begin to make themselves known. Phil's empty stomach - which had gotten thoroughly spoiled since he started sleeping with Clint - gurgles ominously, but it's his bladder that Phil knows is going to develop into his most pressing concern.

With a soft huff of annoyance at his ever advancing age, Phil finally opens his eyes and finds Natasha's face less than a foot away from his own.

Phil curses and recoils, not that he can go far with Clint so close behind him.

Clint makes a distressed sound at being jostled. "It's your turn to wash the elephant," he mumbles before pressing his face firmly between Phil's shoulder blades and settling back down.

Phil would find the whole thing incredibly adorable if he wasn't clutching at his chest and trying to regulate the rush of adrenaline flooding his system.

"Are you having a heart attack?" Natasha asks. She remains crouched beside the bed, but she does lean back a bit, as if giving Phil a couple of inches of space might help him somehow. Or maybe she thinks heart attacks are communicable, who the hell knows.

Phil glares at her.

"Your lack of perception is disturbing," she says. "Especially for someone in your line of work."

Phil glares some more. "I was asleep."

"No you weren't. You've been awake for at least seven minutes."

Phil feels a muscle under his left eye twitch. "How long have you been here?"

Natasha slowly shakes her head. "Disturbing."

"Yes," Phil says, pinching the bridge of his nose. "It is. Extremely disturbing. What do you want Natasha?"

"I need to talk to Clint."

Even as annoyed as he is, Phil recognizes the significance of Natasha's wording. Now that he knows what to look for, he easily spots a certain tightness around her eyes and mouth that he's only seen on one or two rare occasions. It's an expression that's always preceded a long and private conversation with Clint.

Phil briefly closes his eyes, then says, "I need to pee."

Natasha gracefully rises out of her crouch and turns to face the wall. "Your boxers are-"

"Yes, thank you, I know where they are." Phil sits up and turns to address his blissfully unaware boyfriend. He reaches over and lets his hand curl around the curve of Clint's skull before moving down to firmly caress his neck and shoulder. Clint stirs and his pretty eyes open. They crinkle at the corners as he smiles softly at Phil, but his expression quickly turns into a frown when he spots Natasha.

Clint raises his eyebrows. Phil shrugs, then extracts himself from the sheets. He walks towards the bathroom, snagging his boxers along the way.

When Phil leaves the bathroom some time later, freshly showered and with a soft, aubergine colored towel around his waist, Natasha has taken Phil's place on the bed. She and Clint are deep in conversation. There are frowns on both of their faces, though Clint's seems more exasperated than anything else, and their hands are moving almost violently in the air around them.

Phil quickly averts his eyes. He hasn't had time to take an actual ASL class yet, but he has picked up a lot of basic things from just being with Clint, and he doesn't want to inadvertently see anything he shouldn't.

"Sorry," he says. "Don't mind me." He walks over to the wardrobe Clint got specifically to hold Phil's suits - and any other clothes of his that have migrated from his apartment - and grabs a tee shirt, jeans, and a pair of underwear. He goes back to the bathroom to change. When he's done, he peeks into the bedroom area again.

Now Natasha is curled up against Clint. Her head is on his chest, and he's lightly carding a hand through her hair.

Phil feels a twinge of jealousy. He knows it's stupid, and unwarranted, and Natasha would probably skin him alive if she knew - which still wouldn't be as painful as the wounded look Clint would give him - but he can't help it.

Calling himself all kinds of a fool, Phil exits Clint's living space and walks into the diner. He sets up one of the coffee makers and leans against the counter. He closes his eyes and listens to the gurgle, hiss, then steady drip, drip, drip of liquid into the carafe.

When he opens his eyes Natasha is standing beside him.

Phil inhales sharply. "Would you please not do that?"

"Very disturbing," she says.

Phil gives her a dirty look. Natasha smirks, grabs a mug, and manages to fill it to the top without letting any of the still brewing coffee splash onto the hot plate.

"How did you-"

"Clint's making you a special batch of 'I'm-sorry-we-couldn't-cuddle' muffins," she says as she hands Phil the mug.

Phil raises one eyebrow. "Is that what he's calling them?"

"No. I believe the word he used was blueberry." Natasha snorts as Phil immediately moves past her to go back to Clint's apartment. "Phil?"

Phil pauses, and as he turns back to her he catches a flash of something close to vulnerability on Natasha's face. It's gone as fast as it appeared, and Phil blinks, wondering if he imagined it.

"Clint is the only person in this world who calls me Nat," she says, after a moment. "But, if you like, you may call me Tasha."

Phil, aware of what he's just been given, nods solemnly. "Thank you Tasha."

"You're welcome. Now go away."

Phil smiles and raises his mug in a little salute.