Tony looks up from his seat in his social worker's sedan and sees an innocuous little colonial style house with a garden and even flower boxes and he feels his stomach sink. He knows from experience that the nicer something is on the outside the darker the secrets it hides.
"Tony?" She says softly and he drags his eyes to her. Waiting for her to tell him to get out of her car so she doesn't have to deal with him anymore.
Tony wouldn't be surprised if he never sees her again for the checks she's supposed to do.
Tony climbs out of the car and pulls his rolling suitcase out and sets them on the sidewalk and pulls his duffle bag over his body with his unbroken arm and then drags his suitcase with him to the front door behind the social worker.
She knocks on the door and Tony would give his right arm to be able have stayed with Rhodey and his family.
"Hello Miss Bell. It is a pleasure to see you again," The man who answers the door says and Tony knows they must have met up to discuss him and to see if the house was okay for him to live in.
"And you must be Tony. I'm Phil Coulson," he says and Tony pretends to be interested in anything but him. Forcing him to live with a bunch of strangers is simply ridiculous.
But then again his case was a rushed situation due to the media presence involved. Tony wonders if Coulson knows the real way Howard and Mom died and how he broke his arm or if he was told the bullshit car accident story they told the media.
"Behave Mr. Stark," the social worker says and Tony looks away once again and follows Coulson into the house and sees three kids sitting on the couch and Tony sighs.
"Welcome to the family Tony. This is Natasha, Clint, and Steve. Guys this is Tony," Coulson says and Tony glances at them trying to look aloof and full of himself. That's probably what they're expecting anyway. It would take too much work to change their minds anyway.
"Welcome to our family," Steve says and Tony tries not to bristle. He's not sure if the blonde meant it as a snide reminder that he's the outsider here or not but it still irritates him either way.
"How about I help you with your bags," Coulson says reaching for the handle. Tony is tempted to show off the self driving feature on his bags but he's pretty sure these people didn't sign any NDAs yet. So they could easily sell it to Hammer Tech.
"So how about we sit down and you can tell us a little about yourself," Coulson says.
"Actually I have class in like Twenty minutes so I kinda need to get online for it," Tony says.
"I'm enrolled in college classes. If I keep it up I can spend a year at MIT next year and graduate in one year," Tony says.
"You're taking college classes? You're fifteen," Steve says in disbelief. Tony tries not to bristle at that.
"Yeah. That's what happens when you're a genius. You skip a bunch of grades," Tony says arms crossed over his chest as best as he can with the cast and sling.
"Now now boys," Coulson says and Tony squeezes his eyes shut and then turns to him.
"Look, I'll pay you triple what you make from the state for taking care of me. All you have to do is give me a ride somewhere and you'll never have to see me again," Tony says.
"Tony, I'm responsible for you. I can't just drop you off with strangers," Coulson says and Tony points to all four of the people in the living room.
"Stranger, stranger, stranger, and look at that another stranger. These people I want to go to are not strangers to me. But you four are," Tony says.
"Then who are they?"
"None of your business," Tony hisses.
"As your parent I think I have a right to know," Coulson says arms crossing over his chest.
"You are not my parent. You are the person I'm living with. They are the people I actually want to live with. But apparently they don't make the income requirement, you apparently do. Hmmmm...I wonder what put you over," Tony says flicking his eyes over to the three other foster kids.
"That's enough. It has to have been a long ride for you. Steve show him to his room," Coulson says and Tony silently follows Steve up to the second floor and then up into the attic.
"This is your room," Steve says motioning around the pretty large space. There are desks and a bed, a closet, it actually looks nice, and then Steve says, "the other bedrooms are on the second floor."
Wonderful, great way to remind him that he's an outsider here. But then again, excellent way to keep him in the house but forget he exists.
Doesn't matter, it's only for a year.
Tony watches as Steve leaves and he goes over to the window and opens it up and climbs out onto the roof. It takes a try or two before he is able to climb into the tree without using his broken arm but he manages and sends a silent prayer of thanks to his mom for those ballet classes when he was a kid.
He lands on the ground and drags his bag up the street and calls an Uber. If Coulson isn't going to take him to his Honey Bear then Tony will go himself.
Not like the Coulsons would miss him. They have enough kids.