“Hey Mister Stark, so I’ve got some homework and I was hop-” I cut off abruptly . Sitting in the middle of the polished granite kitchen of Tony Stark is the runaway Avengers. Steve Rogers, Natasha Romanoff, Bucky Barnes, Clint Barton, and Sam Wilson. Strewn about, they look familiar with the space, but still slightly unused to it. I suppose months away does that. “You’re not Mister Stark?” I say, slightly awe-struck.
“No. We’re not.” Natasha says dryly , eyeing me up and down from her place perched on top of the counter.
“Since when does Stark have a kid?” Clint kicks his legs on top of the table. Steve tuts at him, looking up from the newspaper and swatting at his legs.
“He doesn't.” Black Widow says. On second thought, “does he?”
“He doesn't.” The new voice is dry, unamused. All the heads turn to Tony. He's standing at the other entrance, carrying a stack of steaming pizza boxes with a tray of Starbuck cups balanced on top . Tony sets down the towering stack of pizza boxes on the table. “No! Honestly , I leave for five minutes to get the pizza and you think I’ve got a child?”
“To be fair, this random kid just shows up, asking for homework help, what were we supposed to think?”
“Don’t you think you would’ve noticed if I had a kid around the last sixteen years?”
“It would be the first thing you’ve kept from us..” Natasha says, slurping her steaming coffee.
Tony crossed his arms. “Yeah? What?”
“Ultron, for one.”
Interrupting the budding argument, I ask: “Hey, can I have some coffee?”
Tony and Natasha look up, her eyeing me dubiously . “No.” Tony refuses.
“Why not?” I whine.
“Because it’s bad for you.”
“You drink it all the time!”
“I don’t have a developing brain.”
Mr. Stark raises an eyebrow at me.
I fall silent, grumbling, “fine.”
Mr. Stark turns away, reaching to grab a slice of pizza. This is my chance.
In a sudden flurry of motion I vault over the granite countertop, grabbing Mr. Stark's steaming black coffee and dashing into the lounge .
“Hey! Peter!” comes Mr. Stark's outraged voice, I laugh, taking a long chug of his drink.
It’s hot coffee.
Like really hot.
I gasp, spluttering coffee over the carpet. “Ow! I burnt my tongue,” I mumble thickly , sticking the offending organ out.
“Serves you right,” comes a cool voice from the door.
“Mrrr Stttaaarrrkkk,” I gripe.
“Fine. Come in, and drink some ice-water.” he relents.
I wander back into the kitchen, where the Avengers seem to be in a deep debate.
“Seriously, did Tony just pick him up, or just find out about him...?” Steve wonders.
Clint: “He did have a few wild years,”
Sam: "How long ago was that? How old is the kid anyway?”
Natasha, with a thoughtful look back and a click of her tongue: “Eh, possible.”
Bucky, throwing a look at Steve: “He already said it’s not his kid."
Natasha, snorting: “sure he isn’t. Have you seen the way they look at each other?”
Clint: “Definitely some father/son bonding there.”
"Jesus! Again!” Tony interrupts, throwing up his hands.
‘You can’t just spring this shit on us!” Sam protests.
“Sure I can. He's. Not. My. Biological. Child. Can you get that though your heads?” he spells out.
Ms. Romanoff looks down into her coffee and whispers, “biological.”
Tony ignores the comment, filling up a glass of water and dropping a few ice cubes in. They clink against the sides of the glass intermittently .
“Thanks, Mr. Stark.” I take the glass.
After some more whispered arguing, Bucky bites the bullet. “Who is this kid?” he crosses his arms, one of them shiny and silver. Okay, I need to ask about that.
Mr. Stark takes a deep breath, “Guys, meet Spiderman.” he says heavily , I wave a little, sipping Mr. Stark’s coffee. Then wincing, yeah, not the best thing to do with a burnt tongue.
“He’s Spiderman?” Steve (aka CAPTAIN, FREAKING, AMERICA) says incredulously .
Tony nods, “that's what I said.”
Sam squawks, “He’s just a kid!”
“Hey!” I inject.
Tony spares a glance at me, “I know, I know—”
Steve cuts Tony off. “You brought him to a war-zone! We could have killed him!”
“Tony, he’s not even legally an adult!” Clint mouths.
Natasha and Bucky stay in stony silence.
“What on earth were you thinking!” Steve yells. That's the final string.
“I WASN’T!” Tony roars, he took a few, short, deep pant-like breaths. “I wasn’t thinking,” he continues, slightly quieter, calmer now. “I wasn’t thinking, I know he’s a kid, and probably got too much on his plate anyway, and it really isn't fair and he shouldn't even have powers and the fact I took advantage of him to fight our war is despicable—” The rest of his voice blurs out before it gets to my ears .
That’s it, I can’t handle it anymore. Spiderman was my choice. Sure, maybe Mr. Stark shouldn’t have taken me to Berlin, but I would have gotten into equal amounts of trouble here. I did get into a equal amount of trouble here. The Vulture dropped a building on me for god’s sake!
I kick off my shoes, stripping off my socks. My feet are cold on the tiles. I slam down my glass, making the water splash over the sides. Tony turns and attention is diverted to me. Spinning on my heel, I take off towards the wall, bare feet finding the edge between the tiles and paint easily . And then I’m vertical, climbing the wall with ease and speed. I clamber across the ceiling, opening the already unscrewed vent and disappearing inside.
"Peter!" Mr. Stark calls after me and then everything is quiet.