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The SteveTony Collection

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#46: “what if I told you I’ve been in love with you since we were kids.”

 

Of all the memories Steve had of his mother, one stood out more than the rest.

It had been during one of her very last stints in the hospital for her leukaemia; and she’d cupped his acne-speckled face in his trembling hands and whispered you love too hard a thaisce and i worry it’ll hurt you

then, he’d just leaned forward and pressed his lips to her forehead and said you don’t have to worry about me Mamma and held her while she slept

but the words stuck around in his head as he ran his long fingers through her hair, and tried desperately not to think of the hazel eyed boy that was due to pick him up in an hour

(he failed miserably)

even now, 10 years on, his mother’s words wrapped around his heart and squeezed, quietly reminding him of everything he didn’t

she was right of course

his ma was always right

Steve Rogers always loved too hard, he thought in an almost melancholy way as he felt familiar hands wrap themselves and the absentminded press of lips against his back, turning around to hug Tony properly, and his love always hurt

Being in love with his best-friend was it’s own unique sense of torture, Steve thought as Tony pulled him across campus to their next class and told him stories from his latest adventure with Tiberius; this personal hell that Steve had concocted for himself that he refused to leave

It wasn’t just that he’d known Tony since they been in diapers

but Tony just had this inherent goodness in him

this unbreakable desire to fix the world

to save everyone

Steve got it (kind of)

It wasn’t that Steve didn’t want to help people, but Steve didn’t have the kind of passion for it that Tony did

the kind of passion that drove Tony into his workshop for multiple nights in a row after Bucky’s accident, and coming out with DUM-E

or the time when Pepper was getting slagged of by some of the sophomores, so Tony hacked into their phones and leaked their dick pics to the MIT administration

or when Bruce accidentally blew up the biology lab and Tony took the fall for it (nevermind that Tony took mech and not biochem) since he could “just pay for it Stevie its not that big a deal”

If Tony wasn’t so inherently good, Steve reckoned he’d be over the guy by now

sure, he was easily the most attractive guy that Steve had ever met; soulful hazel eyes obscured in thick frames, hair that just flopped artfully against his forehead and forever in hoodies that he swam in and hid his lithe figure

but if he hadn’t been the kindest most selfless person Steve knew, Steve would’ve gotten over him in high-school

like most things in Steve’s life- things came to a head in a bitter fight

Tony had come back to their small apartment sporting a black eye and gruffly muttered me and Tiberius are over and flopped down on the couch

Steve immediately grabbed a small bag of frozen peas and shoved Tony around lightly until he begrudgingly allowed Steve to tilt his chin up and press the cold pack against the bruise, hissing when it came into contact with his skin

Steve lasted a full 15 minutes before he asked, “did he do this to you?”

Tony stubbornly kept quiet 

“you need to tell me these things Tony. Did Ty do this to you?”

Mio dio Steve does it matter?”

‘Of course it does Tony, if he hit you he needs to go to jail”

Tony’s jaw was in that familiar clench that meant that they were going to fight but Steve was too incensed to give up

“Tony answer me. Is this Stone’s handiwork? Has this happened before? Is this why you ended things?”

cazzo Steve what’s with the third degree? you’ve never cared about my relationships before, why show any interest now?”

And suddenly

Steve couldn’t take it anymore

“Why show any-” Steve spluttered, frozen peas abandoned as his hands flew up “I’ve never cared?!”

Tony’s eyes flickered with uncertainty, but he raised his chin defiantly, “you think i don’t realise that you space out everytime i’m talking about the person i’m seeing? hell you barely even noticed when me and Rumiko ended. it’s not that big of a deal honestly,” he shrugged, “but you don’t”

“i don’t-” Steve bent down and cupped his hands around Tony’s cheeks, his thumb brushing against Tony’s five o clock shadow, “and what if i told you i’ve been in love with you since we were kids”

“that i wake up with your name on my lips, that when you’re around me I’m thinking of you, and when you’re not around me i’m thinking of you”

“that you drive me half mad with want and it’s a physical urge to stop myself from pressing my lips to yours and having my way with you”

“what then huh?”

Several seconds passed between them, as Steve watched Tony digest the words he’d blurted out

Then

Tony deliberately licked his lips slowly, the tip of his tongue brushing against Steve’s thumb and whispered

“who said you had to stop yourself?”

Fin.

Chapter Text

 

In the end, Carol Danvers saved them

(well more accurately she saved him but Steve didn’t feel like nitpicking)

Fury had one last ace up his sleeve that he sent their way in the form of Carol Danvers, and if the way Rhodes had run up to her in half strapped on braces was any indication; she was a special one

(they met while training for the Air Force, Nat whispered to Steve over dinner and Steve made the executive decision to not ask how she knew, or where Carol had been during the initial invasion)

(the second one was harder when he saw what she could do, but he shoved it aside because they needed her, and beggars couldn’t be choosers)

Rhodes pressed his lips against her temple as they saw Danvers off just 48 hours later, and she turned to him and said “He’ll be back before you know it”

And then they had no choice but to wait

Steve wasn’t stupid 

He knew that there was other people who felt his missing presence

He could see it in the way Bruce tilted slightly, as if making space for a second person that wasn’t there

In the way Natasha continued to dye her hair blonde, and donned choppy braids

In the way Rhodes brushed off every attempt by Bruce (and some by Scott) to look at his braces, choosing instead to pore over the War Machine armour and fiddle mindlessly

15 days later, Rhodes looked up from where he was readjusting a bolt in the armour’s leg and said “He’s here.”

Steve didn’t question it, just gestured to Bruce and Natasha before rushing after Rhodes

They ended up in a baseball stadium (that sent a pang through Steve’s heart that he refused to deal with) and waited with bated breath; all turned towards the sky anxiously

Finally, a small speck in the night sky grew impossibly bigger and a mechanical..donut fell out of the sky and crashed near their feet

He heard bangs against the door and it fell open with a hiss, revealing a blue woman who looked more machine than flesh, Carol Danvers, and 

in her arms

collapsed, and frail as sin

Tony

Steve was frozen in his spot, unable to take his eyes off the man in front of him, uncomprehending of the sight 

Rhodes had no such hesitation

He ran across the field to where Tony was nestled in Carol’s arms-

-Carol, who met him half way by literally flying towards them-

- and relieved Tony from her arms almost immediately, threading his fingers through his hair and pressing his lips to his forehead

and it was only Steve’s enhanced hearing that let him catch the question

so how was the donut?

and Tony’s almost breathless chuckle

dio mi sei mancato, platypus 

Fin.

Chapter Text

 

The thing was, Tony was genuinely blindsided by it

which was weird because Tony had walls up for all sorts of things

Tony was prepared for Steve to sell SI secrets, for Steve to funnel out money from their bank account, hell he was prepared for Steve to decide that they weren’t worth it anymore and just up and leave

But he genuinely, truly wasn’t ready to walk into their penthouse and find Steve screwing someone else on their sofa

He must’ve made some inane wounded sound after his brain processed what it was seeing in front of him because Steve’s head snapped up immediately from where it was buried between someone’s legs and the look on his face when he saw Tony would have comical

You know, had Tony not just found his husband screwing someone else on their couch

Steve moved instantly, and Tony entered some new fresh hell when the woman on the couch went from some random slag to his cousin Sharon and he stepped backwards without even realising, like he couldn’t physically watch the scene anymore

“Wait no Tony wait!” Steve was attempting to shrug on his jeans with one hand while the other was uselessly outstretched as if he could summon Tony towards him

but Tony

couldn’t

move

couldn’t look away

even as Sharon shrugged on her sweater and ran past him without a second glance

even as Steve slowly approached him like he was some skittish animal

Tony just stood there

dumbstruck for the first time in 35 years

‘Tony if you would just let me explain-” Steve was close enough that Tony could see the gold flecks in his blue eyes, the sheen coat of Sharon’s cum across his face, the beginnings of a stubble

“- what you walked into-”

Tony’s brain kicked into overdrive

“You mean you shagging my cousin? I know what sex looks like Steve I’m ace not dumb”

Steve cringed “no its not like that, if you would just let me explain-”

“Would you like to take me through a step by step process of how you fucked her? I’m not going to lie to you Steve that doesn’t seem like it’ll help matters”

“Thats not what it was,” Steve was enunciating his words like he was talking to one of the irritating children in his preschool class and suddenly Tony was livid

Alright Steve, explain.”

“I was doing it for us.”

“That’s-,” Tony laughed hollowly, bending down to pick up his briefcase, having newly rediscovered the use of his body, “You know I don’t actually think anyone’s used that before. That’s good”

‘No! Its- Look. I’m not like you. You don’t feel..all that and that’s fine and I love you anyway but I do Tony. I have needs. And I didn’t want to pressure you so” Steve shrugged, “I was trying to save our marriage.”

Tony was a few steps towards when he turned around, incredulous, “You fucked my cousin to save our marriage? even you can come up with better than that Steve.”

“Fuck you.”

Tony let the door slam swallow Steve’s reply.

Fin.

Chapter Text

 

Since the serum, Steve had become ridiculously in-tune with his senses. Every part of him had been heightened and glorified, and while it was sometimes useful, most of the time it wasn’t.

Like when Clint had been up in the vents for a few days and Steve could smell the faint sheen of sweat that had accumulated from his lack of showering

or the ever-present scent of motor oil that lingered in Tony’s hair even when Steve washed it out with shampoo

or the lingering charred skin on Thor’s fingers after he’d used Mjølnir for a particularly strong blast

Most times, Steve hated his heightened sense of smell

Most times

This, he thought as he rushed down the stairs towards Tony’s lab- chasing the smell of smoke and ash, was definitely not one of those times

He barely had enough presence of mind to bark out his override codes as he sprinted into the lab, and came to a stuttered stop when he saw Tony covered in foam, and DUM-E holding a fire extinguisher

Steve knew the minute Tony’s eyes focused on him, because Tony raised his hands in a universal don’t shoot and it would’ve been comical with all the foam covering him, had Steve not thought his husband was dying like 5 seconds ago

“I swear it was an accident” were the first words out of Tony’s mouth and now that Steve had physical proof that his husband was okay, his hindbrain calmed down and he was able to survey the surroundings

A half built Iron Man suit hung from the ceiling, wires dangling dangerously close together; files and stray pieces were strewn across the floor like they’d suffered the blowback of an explosion, and the room reeked of smoke

‘JARVIS,” Steve titled his head up slightly, knowing that it pissed Tony off, “How long has it been since he’s slept”

“We are nearing hour 50 Captain,” was the monotone reply; and Steve heaved a sigh of relief as things made sense again

He walked over to his husband, still voluntarily frozen in a don’t shoot position, and grabbed a dirty rag to wipe off the foam

“Hey no what’re you doing Steve - !” Tony banged his fists again Steve’s back in a futile attempt to get the man to set him down, before changing tactics and reaching out to grab Steve’s ass, “I’m not letting go until you put me down”

Steve tilted his face so he could nip at Tony’s ass; smiling when he yelped,”That’s absolutely fine with me husband”

As expected, Tony shuddered and fell limp on Steve’s side- only putting up a token protest when Steve divested him of his clothes and lay him down on their bed

He pressed a small kiss against Tony’s forehead before reaching over for his book, thumbing through the pages until he found the one he’s doggy eared

“Go to sleep Shellhead, I’ll be here when you wake up”

Fin.

Chapter Text

inspired by let me down slowly by alec benjamin

--

 

The routine was always the same

Steve would wait by the phone with baited breath, uncaring of the numerous looks Sam and Nat were sending his way, for the text

Sometimes it would come twice a month, sometimes it was a week, and sometimes he wouldn’t get anything for almost a year

(those were the worst, leading Steve to obsessively follow the news for any sign of life)

the soft ping and the blinking light let Steve know there was a new message

it was always the same; 

a place

a time

a hotel name and room

and at the end

T.S

Steve never quite figured out how he knew where Steve was, given how much the three of them moved around; but he never questioned it

He’d go to the hotel lobby, pick up a key and take the nearest elevator to the floor

He’d go into the room, they’d fuck and then Tony would leave

The routine was always the same

(that didn’t mean it didn’t break Steve a little more every single time)

--

The first few times, Steve tried talking to him

Asking how Rhodey (”Col.Rhodes”, Tony had said coldly, ‘He’s Col.Rhodes to you) was doing, 
whether Vision was still experimenting with paprika (”kind of hard to when Wanda’s no longer there” Tony had shrugged off his hand, “since he can’t eat and he was only making it for her”), 
if Pepper was still riding his ass about signing stuff (”We broke up 6 months ago,” Tony buttoned up his shirt, ‘But cheers for the trip down memory lane Rogers”). 

He asked, just once, why Tony wouldn’t talk to him

“The last time I tried talking to you Rogers,” Tony hissed at him, in the motion of pulling his boxers up, “I got a scar across my chest”

(after that Steve never asked again)

--

It was pathetic, Steve knew it was, hanging onto the meager scraps of a relationship that barely existed, but some days, he felt like it was the only thing that was still keeping him going

“It’s like I’m a slowly dying plant,” he explained to Nat once, “And Tony’s text, its like that sprinkle of water that lets me start growing again”

--

in hindsight that’s probably what made him say it

--

--

“Please don’t go,” Tony stills from where his hand is resting on the doorknob, poised to turn it, “just please, don’t walk out that door”

(he should leave, he should walk out and never look back, throw that godforsaken phone out the goddamn window)

Tony turns where he’s standing, to look at Steve sitting on the edge of the bed, still naked

(nobody could ever said that Tony Stark had no weaknesses)

“Was there something you needed Rogers?” he asks, and Rhodey would be proud of how his voice doesn’t waver

Steve looks up at him, blue eyes clouded by unshed tears, “you,” he whispers, and fuck if it doesn’t pull on heartstrings that Tony thought no longer existed, “just you”

“you don’t get me anymore,” Tony replies just as soft, “you lost me when you chose him”

(but then again, Tony is standing here instead of walking out the door so how true is that anyway?)

“No,” Steve chuckles but its a dark thing, and Tony clenches his nails into the inside of his palm to stop himself from going over and kissing away the sadness, “No I don’t suppose I do”

It’s silent for about 5 minutes, the only sounds the calm breathing from Tony, and the shorter, panicked breaths from Steve

Tony’s ready to call it a night when Steve says, “I got a ring you know”

and Tony’s entire life stops.

“You what?” he hears himself say, but it’s like an out of body experience

“Shaved off filings from my shield, a little bit everyday until there was enough to fashion it into a single band”

“You got me a ring?”

“The day you brought the Accords to the Compound,”Steve takes in a single breath, “that was the day I was going to-”

“was going to - ”

“That was the day you were going to propose,” Tony finishes

and he’s angry, not in control of his mouth, which is why he looks at Steve with steely eyes when he says, 

“Well I guess its a good thing you never proposed then isn’t it?”

“We’d have never even made it to the alter”

Tony spins on his heels, uncomprehending the scene unfolding around him, and lets the door muffle Steve’s sobs

Fin

Chapter Text

“shit shit shit shit shI- BUCKY!” Steve stretches his neck back to holler, his face rapidly whitening

“Stevie?!″ Bucky rushes in a panic, looking around for the danger

“Stevie?” Bucky asks slower when he realises that his bestfriend isn’t dying of an asthma attack, and his eyes narrow to where Steve is staring at his phone

“Jesus fuck Stevie you near damn gave me a heart-attack,” he says, grabbing the phone out of Steve’s hand, “what’d you do this time?”

“You remember Tony?” Steve says, chewing his lip 

“Short, brunette, got an ass you can bounce a quarter off,” he moves to dodge Steve squatting at him, “yeah I remember him. Nice piece of eye candy when we’re helping out at the shelter. Why?”

“Well,” Steve starts ringing his hands nervously, “the other day; you know when you were with Nat,” Bucky nods along impatiently, “I kindoaskedhimout?”

“Again”

“I asked him out”

Bucky jumps to his feet, “Did the punk say no? Is it because you’re a runt? I don’t care if he’s worth half a bajillion dollars I’ll give him a shiner no money can fix how da -”

“Buck!” Steve yells, grabbing onto his forearm and pulling him down, “He didn’t say no. He said yes. We actually had a really great date”

Bucky pauses, “Stevie I don’t see what the problem is”

“Well,” Steve sighs, “I thought we had a nice date, but then I’ve tried texting him and the texts bounce; and he hasn’t said anything either. It’s been 3 days!!”

Steve shoves the phone at Bucky aggressively until Bucky takes it, “Why would he give me a fake number”

Bucky’s silent, scrolling through the messages

“Oh my god,” Bucky flips him on the top of his head, “you absolute nonce I cannot believe I’m friends with you”

“Why?” Steve’s voice gets progressively high-pitched, “What did I do? Its not like I proposed to him!”

“The messages aren’t going through because you’ve gone and blocked him punk”

“Why would I block him I really like him!”

Bucky fiddles around for a few seconds, before handing the phone back to Steve

“Here, talk to lover boy and explain the whole thing, I’m sure tech-genius Tony Stark will be very understanding”

hello?

They both jump as Tony’s voice comes through the phone, sleep mussed and soft

hello is anyone there?

Bucky gestures meaningfully until Steve scrambles to push the phone to his ear

“Tony? It’s Steve” 

Steve shrugs when Bucky slaps his palm against his forehead

Steve? Hey its nice to hear from you. I’m not gonna lie though about 3 days of radio silence I wasn’t expecting this

“About that,” Steve starts off- and Bucky leaves before he has to listen to anything that’ll make him wanna kill his punk bestfriend

Fin

Chapter Text

 

"you ripped my heart out of my chest," Steve jerks at the voice, but he doesn't turn

He knows his limits, his permissions, and he hasn't earned the right to look Tony Stark in the eye

not anymore

"you pushed your shield against my heart," Tony continues, "literally"

"you literally lifted your shield up and pushed it against my arc reactor, even though you knew that was a trigger for me, even though you knew that it was the only thing keeping shrapnel from killing me"

"tell me Steve," and he sounds so defeated, "when did you start to hate me so much?"

Steve can't help himself, he turns

He half stretches his hands in an aborted attempt to clasp Tony's hand between his own, but stop himself

He looks up at Tony imploringly, "you have to believe me Tony I never meant to hurt you. I was so focused on getting Bucky to safety"

"you know," Tony says, refusing to meet his eyes, "it's kind of ironic. I was so caught up acquiescing your many insecurities about my james, that i never really thought to worry about yours"

"funny how things work out," he sniffs, crinkling his noise, "now I'm with my James; and yours is in cryo the last I heard?"

There's an inquisitive edge to his voice, and Steve nods briefly

"what do you -" Steve's throat works past the dryness, "what do you mean you're 'with your James"'

Tony crinkles his nose again, "you were right, Rhodey loves me"

He bites his lip softly, "and i think I may love him too"

Dimly, Steve is aware of his heart breaking. Consciously, he's focusing on the slight grey in Tony's hair; and the thick frames perched on his nose

"The divorce papers are in the mail," Tony says, "do us all a favour and sign them quietly"

"I don't want to fight you anymore Steve"

The screen shuts off before Steve can respond, and he's left in stifling silence

Chapter Text

"So you're the new Defense teacher," Tony looks up from his stacks of papers to see someone leaning against his door, "a bit young aren't you?"

Tony shrugs, standing up and flattening out his robes, "Professor McGonagall asked me personally, and well- I couldn't refuse"

"Ah," the stranger says, "you're a former student"

"Were you around for the Great War as they call it?"

Tony thinks of the scars across his back, the limp in his walk, the charred skin on his forearm, "something like that"

"Well," the stranger says, sticking out his arm, "I'm Steve Rogers, the transfiguration teacher. I took over after the Headmistress became well, the Headmistress I suppose"

"Tony Carbonell," he replies, enclasping their hands together, "I suspect I'll be seeing you around"

Steve smiles at him, "I suspect you shall"

--

As with most things, word spreads about the shiny new Defense teacher

How he's exchanging favours with McGonagall (who is twice his age and gay), how he comes from old money (which isn't strictly false but its bit more complicated), how he stole his powers and charms (how would that even work?) but the biggest of them all, which may be due to the fact that its true, is that he's slytherin

Tony doesn't outright admit to it, he's prideful but not stupid, being slytherin in a post-Voldemort world isn't looked kindly upon; even if you fought for the right side

In all fairness, all his old professors remember him, even if its an adjustment to have him as a colleague instead of a student- so its just the kids who have to come around

The only problem with that is it isn't the faculty that Tony needs to make nice to, its the kids. Which is why he bites back winces and keeps a smile on his face, turning a blind eye to all the spells that "accidentally" come his way and licking his wounds in private

Everyone lost someone in the War, and Tony doesn't begrudge them their anger. (it would be laughably hypocritical if he did)

He's tending to a particularly vicious burn in his office when Steve comes in

"Tony hey I just wan-" despite Tony twisting out of his way, Steve still notices the scar, "what happened?"

Steve is by his side instantly, and Tony hisses when he runs his fingers against the burn gingerly

"I was messing with something I shouldn't have," Tony says, but slytherins aren't rats, "and I got hurt"

"You need to see Poppy that looks really bad Tony," Steve moves to help Tony up but Tony moves away

"Poppy will just want to write it up and I don't want anyone knowing about this," Tony says- running a wet towel over it, "it'll heal on its own. It always does"

"This has happened before?" Steve sounds oddly hurt, which Tony doesn't understand because it isn't like he's the one doing this to Tony

He wave Steve off with his free hand, "It'll be fine Steve stop fretting"

Steve's face is twisted in a pinch, "At least let me help. I picked up some spells hanging around my mom, she was a healer back in Brooklyn"

Tony looks up at Steve from his bent over position, and Steve stares right back- and Tony is relieved that Steve never went to Hogwarts because he would've been one of those bullish gryffindor twats that Tony would've hated

(he doesn't examine why the thought of hating steve makes him so uncomfortable)

Sighing, he moves to make space for Steve, and Steve reacts instantly- bending down so that Tony can rest his forehead on his shoulder while Steve rucks up his shirt and murmers spells

"You know," Steve says after a pointed silence, "this is not exactly how I expected to get your shirt off"

If Tony had any strength, he would've reacted to that

Instead, he just hums against Steve's shoulders, "I guess its true, what they say about americans being incredibly forward"

He feels Steve shrug, "Gets things done faster"

Tony moves so he can look at Steve's face, even though Steve is still intently focusing on his mid-riff

There's a faint blush against his pale skin that Tony decides he quite likes, and absently wonders how far it travels

"Is that what you came to ask me when I was licking my wounds in private? If you could see my midrib?"

So the blush gets darker, interesting

"No I planned on asking you that after plying you with wine like a proper yankee," and Tony chuckles forgetting that he's injured

He sags against Steve slightly, the pain shooting across his entire body; and Steve runs his hand against Tony's back and soothes him

"I would've said yes," Tony rasps, when the pain subsides, "burn against my stomach aside; if you'd asked me I would've said yes"

Steve shifts and looks at Tony with a singular focus that takes Tony's breath away, "well then, all that's left to do is ask"

Fin

 

Chapter Text

 

Someone’s sniffling. That’s what wakes Steve up, someone sniffling

He taps around sleepily for Tony, more alert when he realises that his husband isn’t next to him

He pushes from the bottom of palm into the bed to get himself up, squinting when he sees the light creeping through their open bedroom door

He slips into his toasties; pulling a long jacket on and pads into the living room, eyes adjusting to the light long enough to see Tony cradling a sleepy Peter in his arms, shirtless

“Not that I don’t enjoy the view,”Steve says- smiling when Tony turns to face him; one finger hovering above Peter because Peter’s caught it in his fist, “but honey its the middle of winter, aren’t you cold?”

Now that he’s more awake, Steve can feel the cool breeze from the open window against his skin, and yet, here his husband is, shirtless and sniffling but making no attempt to cover up

Tony nods his head at the sofa, and Steve looks at the nest he’s built with couches and throw-duvets

“His fever spiked during the night,” Tony says quietly, sniffling, “and no matter what I couldn’t get him to cool down and sleep”

“The open air helps him, and he kept biting and scratching at my tshirt until I took it off”

Steve thinks he may be falling in love with Tony all over again, looking at his husband visibly fight the shivers to keep their son comfortable

But it helps nobody if Tony falls sick, so Steve walks around and closes the window- shushing Tony’s protests

“He’s asleep now so he’ll be fine,” he says- pressing his lips to Tony’s softly before leaning down and kissing Peter’s forehead in a similar fashion, “go make use of that nest you’ve built with our sofa”

He huddles Tony in his arms, grinning when he feels Tony sag against him, and manoeuvres him to the nest

Steve carefully takes Peter from Tony until Tony is comfortable, and gingerly sits down so Tony can warm himself up and bring back some rosy-ness to his cheeks

He’s rocking Peter in his arms, when the thought occurs to him, “do you need more blankets?”

Tony looks up from the blanket burrito he’s made around his person to level Steve with a glare, and Steve has to bite his lip to keep from laughing and jostling their son

Fin

 

Chapter Text

The scent hits Steve the minute he enters the flat. It’s subtle, and a human nose would’ve have picked it up. 

(but ever since the serum, Steve isn’t human-not really)

It’s acidic, burning through his skin- because the air scents of despair

He drops his bags, ignoring the loud thud they make and chases the scent blindly. He forgoes the lift for the stairs, taking two at a time until he stands in front of their bedroom

He flings the door open, and the scent is so overwhelming it threatens to bring him to his knees

Grief, loss, and hatred are thick and undeniable, and in the centre of it- is his mate; in a pool of blood on the bed

It doesn’t take long for Steve to realise what has happened, and he softly pads over to the bed- in direct contrast to the instincts roaring inside of him

Tony’s head snaps up when Steve is close enough that his scent intermingles in the air, and he half turns towards Steve- neck bared open and eyes downcast

He raises shaky palms and turns them upward; and if it had been any other day- the submissiveness would’ve shocked Steve

but it isn’t any other day

“The baby, its yours,” Tony says woodenly, refusing to meet Steve’s eyes, “or it would’ve been anyway”

Steve moves closer to the bed, kneeling so he’s level with his mate

He extends a hand to wrap around the back of Tony’s neck, and tugs- just once; but Tony follows wordlessly until his head is nestled in the crook of Steve’s shoulder

There’s a wet patch on Steve’s tshirt, which is how Steve knows that Tony is crying; so he just holds him

and they stay like that, mourning the loss of their child

Fin

Chapter Text

Ever since the War, Steve has always been a notoriously light sleeper. Every twitch, every cough, even a heavy breath could make him stir

Which is why its odd when he turns around at 4am, feeling for his husband and comes up empty

Its not odd for Steve to wake up alone, but it is odd that Tony has slipped out of bed without alerting Steve at all

And with their line of business, Steve jumps to the worst conclusion instantly

He takes second to grab the disc on the side of his bed, and his suit materialises around him as he’s walking out of their bedroom door (thank god Tony pushed to use a nano-suit) 

With his heightened instincts, it doesn’t take Steve long to realise where the faint noise is coming from, and it feels like his anxiety is dialled up to eleven when he realises that its coming from Peter’s room

Quickly, but softly, to not alert the person (people? maybe Steve should’ve gotten his shield after all) attacking his son; he glides against the floor

When he gets to the propped open door; he shifts ever so slightly; sagging and tapping two fingers against his chest to dis-assemble the suit when he realises who’s in the room

--

If you had told Tony 5 years ago that he would have a husband and a kid, chances are he would’ve been too drunk to understand what you were saying; and off the chance he was sober enough to comprehend it; he would’ve empathetically denied it

Years under Howard taught him that Starks weren’t made to be parents

and yet, here he is, cooing at his 8 month old son ever so slightly

“Did you have another nightmare bubba?” he whispers, wiggling his finger against Peter’s stomach and smiling when Peter babbles back, “its okay, Papa’s here now”

There’s a sound behind him, and Tony turns; Peter curled up against him; to see Steve standing at the doorway in his boxers

Hanging loosely around his neck, is the dog tags Tony fashioned for him- which store the nano-bots for his suit

It takes a beat, but Tony waves Steve over when he realises what’s happened

“I’m sorry I didn’t wake you,” Tony whispers when Steve bends down to peer over his chin at their son, “I heard him crying over the baby monitor and I didn’t even think about anything else”

He feels Steve hum around him, and he half turns so he can look his husband in the eye, singular eyebrow raised

“It’s just,” Steve says after a couple of seconds, “I’m not upset that you got up; I’m just worried about what it means that I didn’t”

If you had told Tony 5 years that Captain America, the paragon of virtue and righteousness, had insecurities about being a good father; he would’ve laughed in your face

(but Steve Rogers, who grew up without a dad and hated all his “uncles”, that was pretty believable)

“Hey,” Tony says, “hey look its not your fault. You were dead on your feet after that mission sweetheart, of course you slept through the baby monitor. How many times have I come back from the lab and just collapsed, while you woke up through the night to change this squirt’s diaper? Hm?”

Tony waits until Steve nods, nudging his chin up until Steve is looking at him, “you’re a good dad Steve. It’s okay if you miss a couple things; thats why there’s two of us”

Steve leans forward until he can press his lips to his husband’s, breaking apart only when a minuscule fist hits his jaw

Tony bites back a chuckle; and they both look down at their son; foreheads touching

“The kid doesn’t like kissing,” Steve whispers, grinning from ear to ear “got it”

Fin

 

Chapter Text

Tony loved that he owned a bookstore

Genuinely

He saved up for three years working tables at Ms Carter’s diner, before he had enough to buy the storefront across the street on the corner of 5th and Main from Rhodey, who had generously been holding for him - all the while saying “Tones you can just use the store you don’t need to buy it off me I’ll give it to you for free” - but Tony had 18 years of people giving him things (before he refused to work for SI and his dad cut him off) , and he wanted to earn this

It took about 5 weeks of work, but Stark Scrolls opened on the 26th of January

That had been 4 years and 8 months ago

Tony was man enough to admit that initially customers came in because everyone wanted to see where the Stark Heir had finally ended up, but now - he’d like to think that people came for his books

He kept an extensive collection of both fiction and non fiction books, and he famously sold university and college textbooks for a steal

(not to mention that a lot of them were second hand, and came with notes and doodles on the side from previous owners)

After his first year, he expanded to the next store over and added a coffee shop; because MIT students had given up looking for space in the library and were frequently sitting in the aisles of his store to study

He had a couple regulars - and one of them, Peter Parker, was even working part time to help pay off his student loans

He loved being a bookstore owner

A fact that was particularly hard to remember at this exact moment, because he was stretching on his tiptoes (while already on a ladder) to reach a box that Rhodey had stashed away while he was on leave - clearly not accounting for the difference in height between him and Tony

“Excuse me?” a voice underneath him startles Tony, and he looses balance - falling face first down to the ground

Tony closes his eyes and braces for impact - that never comes

Automatically, his hands wrap around the solid body thats clutching him, and he opens his eyes closely - one after another as he comes to grips with the fact that he didn’t just die

He’s in the arms of possibly the most attractive man he’s ever met, bright blue eyes and gorgeous blond hair

Tony’s close enough to count the freckles decorating his face, and he can feel himself turning rapidly red

“Hi,” the man says warmly, clearly oblivious to Tony’s inner monologue, “I’m Steve”

“You can put me down now Steve,” Tony says with a squeak, feeling the air return to his lungs when Steve reacts instantly and sets him down

“Sorry about that,” Steve says sheepishly, “I didn’t mean to startle you”

“I’m Steve,” he says again, “I just moved into the neighbourhood and Ms Carter said that you were someone to get to know”

Steve makes a show of looking him up and down, which does nothing to dampen Tony’s blush, “she was definitely right”

Fin

Chapter Text

It hadn’t been easy

AIM had been dormant for so long that Tony had almost forgotten they existed, letting his EXTREMIS protocols go lax while he focused all his time on other things (like warring between wanting to fix things with Steve and also never talking to him again)

clearly that had been a mistake, because AIM had been working on a way to control EXTREMIS, and Tony might have gotten it out of Pepper, but he never got it out of himself

Mid way through the battle he felt his body seize up, limbs thrust over and moving off their own accord, and he managed to get out a staggered, “Steve - I need help” because they took control of his senses too, making him mute and seeing through his eyes

It hadn’t been easy, because the Avengers were no longer fighting AIM, they were fighting him

and after Siberia, Tony knew exactly how to take every single one of them down

It’d been sheer luck that Tony had managed to get to Steve in time, and that Steve remembered his protocols from back when they were friends (or maybe they still were? Tony could never figure out his emotions) 

Steve had barked it up, and Tony felt the armour disassemble around him - and free-falling was patently more terrifying when you had no control over your body; but Thor caught him mid fall and held him down until Natasha figured out how AIM was controlling EXTREMIS and shut down the operation

Tony felt like he was a puppet who’s strings had been cut and he abruptly slumped against Thor, the adrenaline pumping out of his system and making way for extreme exhaustion

The last thing he saw before he passed out was the blurry figure of Captain America walking towards him

/

“Tony - Tony - Tony!” Steve slaps his cheek repeatedly, leaning back when Tony stirs

He breathes a sigh of relief when Tony coughs and groans, slumping back against his heels and trying to still his thumping heart

what if - no Steve shakes his head to dispel any such thoughts, after all- Tony was waking up under him and he was going to be fine

The relief is short lived however, when Tony realises how Steve is sitting -straddling his hips because it was the quickest way to wake him up - and scrambles out from under him

Tony’s eyes are blown wide and he clutches at the nano- reactor housing his armour instantly, though he doesn’t activate it

‘Tony - ?” Steve asks, reaching out to him in an movement that’s aborted when Tony flinches away from him, before pushing up onto his feet desperately

“No!” Tony shouts, “No - just, just stay away”

And then he spins on his heels and just, runs away from Steve - leaving Steve looking after him forlornly on his knees - arm still stretched out to reach him

/

“Hey,” there’s a knock on Steve’s door - and he looks up to see Tony leaning against the frame

He’s changed since the mission, into a pyjama bottom and a threadbare tshirt that falls off his shoulder

It looks oddly familiar, but Steve doesn’t think this is the time to ask whether its his

“Hey,” Tony says softly, “do you have a couple of minutes to talk?”

for you i have a lifetime, Steve thinks but he says, “yes ‘course”

“I wanted to uh - “ Tony licks his lips, and Steve valiantly focuses on not letting all of his blood rush south, “I wanted to explain what happened on the mission today”

There’s a couple moments pause and then -

“I have nightmares,” Tony says abruptly, “nightmares of Siberia. Of you…” pushing your shield into my heart over and over he doesn’t say but Steve gets it

He got it a second after Tony ran away from him

“..you know,” Tony says instead, “and when I woke up you were in a similar position and I just, freaked out I guess”

“Tony,” Steve says delicately, because they haven’t talked about Siberia since he got back and this is important, “I can never make up for what I did in Siberia. You must know how utterly sorry I am, but I understand if you never forgive me”

“But I promise you,” he takes a chance and leans forward to clasp Tony’s hands, “I will never hurt you like that again”

“Hurting you was,” Steve blinks back tears, “doing that to you was the biggest regret of my life - and I will spend the rest of it making it up to you. If you let me”

Tony looks at him for a couple of seconds, searching his face for something 

He must find it, because his lips crinkle into a soft smile and he squeezes Steve’s hand back, “I know Cap. And I’m working on trusting you. Baby steps right?”

Steve nods, “baby steps”

Fin

Chapter Text

Steve looks into the bag, and then back up at Bucky with pleading eyes

“You can’t make me wear this Buck,” he begs, “I will dress up as literally anything else, but don’t make me wear this”

Bucky just cocks a single eyebrow, “you lost the bet fair and square Rogers, now you gotta dress up”

“You don’t understand, Tony will eviscerate me. He’s not gonna kiss me for a whole week if I wear this. He’ll make me sleep on the couch. Buck you know what that does for my back, please”

Bucky holds up a single finger, “First of all, you’re a supersoldier you have no back issues”

“And second of all, that’s precisely why I chose this outfit. You and Tony have been too,” he gestures with his fingers together, “kissy lately and its bumming the rest of us singles out. Maybe this will give yall some much needed space to breathe instead of attacking each other’s faces all the times”

Steve hangs his head, gripping the bag tightly, “So there’s nothing I can do to make you change your mind?”

“Nope,” Bucky shakes his head

“Might as well face the music then”

/

Tony’s curled up on the couch on his phone when he hears the elevator ding, and Steve watches the happiness on his husband’s face bleed into horror and repulsion when he realises what Steve is wearing

Tony jumps off the couch, walking backwards like Steve’s got some sort of contagious disease

“What in fresh hell are you wearing?” Tony hisses, and Steve looks down at his Harvard sweater despairingly 

“You remember that bet with Bucky from last month?” Tony nods, “Remember how he got to choose my halloween outfit?”

He gestures to his outfit, “apparently I’m supposed to be going as someone called Danielle Cohn?

Tony points at him, “Thats a, That’s a Harvard sweater”

Steve pulls at it, “Apparently she has a video wearing it that went viral?” he reaches out for his husband, trying to not be disappointed when Tony steps away from him, “look hun its only for tonight, and then I can take it off”

Tony’s found a pen somewhere, and wiggles it at Steve threateningly, “you’re sleeping on the couch for a week. And don’t even think about coming near me until you’ve had at least 6 showers”

“Thats fair,” Steve says forlornly, “just please don’t call -”

but Tony’s already got the phone to his ear, “Honeybear? You won’t believe what Steve’s done this time…” he steps out of the living room

“- Jim,” Steve says to the open air, before slumping down against the couch

He might as well get used to it, since he’d be here for the next week

Fin

 

Chapter Text

“You want us to go where?” Steve skids to a stop, and Tony huffs- turning around and stretching out his hand

“I want to see Dumbledore’s grave, Steve come on, we have to get there before anyone sees us”

“You want us,” Steve gestures between him and Tony, “a couple of OWL students, to go visit a graveyard on Halloween?”

“Are you out of your mind?” Steve hisses, “I know Slytherins aren’t that smart, but this is insane”

Tony crosses his hands over his chest, “I’m going to see Dumbledore’s grave because I want to know if its true that his ghost comes to life on Halloween. If you’re too chicken-shit to join me, I’m sure Sam’s waiting in the Great Hall”

Tony sniffs imperviously, and starts walking down the Hall, and it takes Steve a couple of seconds before he grumbles to himself and takes long strides to catch up with Tony

“Don’t even,” he says when Tony opens his mouth to gloat, “I’m only coming because I don’t trust you to not do something stupid like take on a centaur. I’m still widely against this idea”

They wait almost all night, but Dumbledore’s ghost never shows

“Maybe he only comes out when there’s nobody else,” Steve offers, “wasn’t he like super smart or something? If he came out when students were here, then there’d always be students milling about trying to learn something from him”

Tony hums to acknowledge that he heard Steve, but doesn’t say anything in response- just leans forward to rest his chin on his knees

From this angle, the moonlight catches his caramel skin almost perfectly, and not for the first time- Steve itches for a pencil and a sketch-book

“You look beautiful,” he says instead, and Tony turns to him with an eyebrow raised

“Really?” his voice is incredulous, “in a graveyard?”

Steve leans forward to press their lips together, smirking when Tony responds instantly

His fingers lift up to tug at Tony’s green tie, bringing them closer so he can lick into Tony’s mouth

“Making out in a graveyard?” Tony whispers, “is that really the best you got to cheer me up?”

Steve tightens his hold on Tony’s tie, revelling at how it brings a faint flush to his dark skin, “if you stop interrupting me,”he murmers, “i can do a whole lot better”

Fin

Chapter Text

“Strip poker,” Tony says again, because he wants to make sure that he’s hearing Clint right, “your solution for the fact that we don’t know anything about each other is strip poker”

Clint nods, “everyone’s got a story Stark, and your skin tells it best”

“Rules are simple, if you lose - you take a shot and you strip. Or you can kiss someone”

Tony thinks about the scars marring his chest, the ink colouring his ribs, the shield on the swell of his ass, and says “sure why not - I’m game”

“I don’t think that - “ Steve pipes up, but Tony gives me a look over his whiskey glass, “you chicken Rogers?”

It has the intended effect, because he shuts up immediately - a glint in his eyes

/

Tony’s down to his tshirt and his boxers, which is better than he expected to do given that he doesn’t count cards very well while he’s drunk 

He looks down at his cards, and holds back a groan because he’s got too much in the pot to fold, and he isn’t a fan of flashing his junk to people he’s just met

(or his scars)

“Full house!” Steve says triumphantly, “everybody pay up”

Natasha reaches behind her to unclasp her bra, and Clint pulls at the hem of his tshirt

“Tony?” Steve says expectantly, “your tshirt please”

Tony looks down the neck of his tee, and back at the Avengers, before Clint’s words come back to him

“Clint,” he says, trying his best to keep his voice even, “you said strip or kiss right?”

The room is instantly more alert, but Tony pays it no mind, pushing himself up to his feet and the crossing the room to sink onto Steve’s lap

Almost by instinct, Steve’s hands shoot up to steady his hips, and isn’t that an interesting turn of events

“I choose kiss,” Tony murmers, before bending down and pressing his lips to Steve’s

Fin

 

Chapter Text

There’s a small clink to indicate that the door has been opened, and Tony wraps his fingers against the bars - leaning forward to greet the man who entered

“We have to stop meeting like this Commodore,” he drawls, grinning when Steve walks over and unlocks the door, “people are going to start talking”

“Captain Stark,” Steve says blandly, but his eyes betray his amusement, “I assume you know the charges against you?”

“Hmm, I’d rather have you against me,” Tony says in a sultry voice - exaggerating a moan when Steve tugs on his chains, “kinky. I could be into that - with the right person”

“I’m walking you to your execution and you’re still thinking with your cock,” Steve says with a huff, “its truly extraordinary” 

“My cock?” Tony gasps, “and how exactly would you know Commodore? Have you been spying on me again? All you had to do was ask - I wouldn’t have said no”

Steve doesn’t deign that with a reply, but the back of his neck does turn red so Tony counts it as a win

They fall silent for the rest of the walk - Tony humming along to a song that Steve’s never heard and the only other sound is the rustle of the chains

Just as they’re turning the corner towards the town square, Steve doubles back into an alley and leans against a wall

Without giving him time to react, Steve tugs on the chains so that Tony falls onto him and latches onto his lips

Tony kisses him back just as fiercely, mindful of the brass on his hands when he pushes into Steve and slots himself between his thighs

“The keys are in my backpocket,” Steve murmers against his lips, “and you need to leave immediately otherwise I’ll be charged with aiding and abetting”

“Well we wouldn’t want that would we Commodore?” Tony says just as quiet, “then you might have to finally take me up on my offer to be my kept-boy”

“I can’t think of a worse life,” Steve says - but he’s grinning so hard that Tony can’t resist leaning in for one last kiss; before letting the chains fall with a large clang

“Until next time Commodore!” he calls out, running into the town square; and Steve closes his eyes and counts to fifteen before he lifts his head and yells “WE’VE GOT A CONVICT ON THE LOOSE”

Fin