Bruce strolled up the red carpet, amongst the glitter and flash of the surrounding media. The 21st Entrepreneurs Awards was a big event, attracting big names from all over the world. It was a night of glitz and glamour, preceded by days of wheeling and dealing - more biotech and defense contracts were sealed within this one week than in the rest of the entire year.
Bruce could feel Clark's eyes on him, even through the throng of reporters. It took only moments to spot him at the back of the crowd, and Bruce held his eyes for just a second before continuing towards the large open doors ahead. He would have much preferred Clark by his side, rather than hiding in the crowds. But appearances had to be maintained. The billionaire playboy was rather amused at his invite to this prestigious event. He certainly wasn't known as a savvy businessman, that was for sure. But running one of the largest research and manufacturing companies appeared to count for something, so he put in an appearance. Not that anyone would have really missed his presence, with the golden boy of industry just a few metres ahead of him. Tony Stark was impeccable in his tux, though the slightly garish red and gold bow tie almost spoiled the effect. He was absolutely mobbed by the big names of print, screen and sound, all scrabbling for a sound bite on Stark Industries' latest achievement, or Tony's own as Iron Man.
Bruce rolled his eyes at the extravagant playboy. Sure, it must be nice to have everything out in the open like that. But some of us have actual work to do, not just flying around looking pretty. Not that Bruce was actually in contempt of the man. Tony's genius had aided his own Mission greatly, and he admired his strength and persistence. As a much younger man Bruce's admiration had lead to a brief and passionate affair, the fire of which was surpassed only by its spectacular ending six weeks later.
Now older and theoretically wiser, Bruce had no regrets and often enjoyed Tony’s company; their lives had run down surprisingly parallel paths. The fact that they were both here on the red carpet was evidence of that. Bruce approached his friend with a warm smile and a handshake for the cameras. Tony’s brown eyes sparkled, and he pulled Bruce in for a quick peck on the cheek. The wheels in Bruce’s head suddenly spun. This was an old game between them, and one he enjoyed more than he should. He turned so they stood shoulder to shoulder, and rested his hand lightly on the small of Tony’s back. The more sharp eyed of the reporters seemed amused. Tony glared at him out of the corner of his eye. He never liked to lose. Bruce wasn’t prepared to up the ante though. He had more than enough on his plate at the moment without adding a jealous Kryptonian. While Tony was answering a question on the rollout of his new industrial arc reactor model Bruce scanned the crowds for Clark again, finally catching sight of him at the back again.
Just as Bruce turned back to Tony again, he heard the grating sound of rending metal. Shrieks arose from people on the raised stands flanking the red carpet, as one swayed ominously. Suddenly, it stilled again, allowing the panicked people to hurry to safely. Bruce didn’t need to have seen the sudden blur of movement to know Clark was over there, saving the day. But there were a million eyes and cameras focused on this spot, and it could be only seconds until Clark, in full civilian get up, was spotted using his superhuman strength. Bruce concluded that a distraction was required. He had preciously few options though, and little that could hold the media’s undivided attention for the unknown minutes it could take Clark to secure the situation. In fact, Bruce had almost nothing… except Tony.
The smaller man was in the middle of answering yet another question, the reporters having quickly returned to their work, when Bruce placed his free hand on Tony’s jaw, turned his head and kissed him full on the lips. The surrounding circle of reporters fell silent instantly. Bruce continued the kiss for a few more seconds before pausing but Tony, being Tony, then took over, cupping Bruce’s face in his hands. The inventor’s goatee was rough against Bruce’s skin, but his lips were full and soft and parted slightly. The hand still on Tony’s back slid down to rest on his arse, as Bruce tried to take control of the kiss back. Things got a little uncoordinated then and they parted, breathing heavily. The silence held for only a moment, before a sudden roar as every media rep within earshot tried to ask them the same a million questions at the same time.
Bruce laughed, pulling away to head towards the entrance. He purposefully didn’t look in Clark’s direction, as that would have defeated the point of this exercise. Tony followed him, dealing out a pat on his arse as he caught up to the Gothamite. Bruce glared at him.
“Y’know, if you wanted to get into my pants again, all you had to do was ask.”
Bruce snorted. “That was purely strategic.”
Tony blinked at him, then laughed loudly. “Right. You’re really messed up. You do know that, right?”
Just as they reached the open doors, a solid weight landed on Bruce’s shoulder. Bruce looked over, then up, into the face of a tall blond, blue eyes alight with something that looked entirely nothing like amusement.
Tony laughed harder.