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house rules

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Tony’s not totally sure how he got here, and he’s maybe not a hundred percent on where here is. He and Steve were on a fact-finding mission, trying to keep a low profile while they tried to find their next Hydra cell to take down, and somehow that’s led them here.

To a frat house.

In the middle of a party.

Tony hasn’t been to a frat party since college, but they haven’t changed much that he can tell, except he doesn’t remember them being quite this loud and messy. Then again, this is the first time he’s ever been sober at one, which could have something to do with it.

Steve, on the other hand, probably hasn’t ever been to one.


Because if Tony were to guess, just judging by the way Steve is acting, he’d think Steve is not only a brother here, but the president. He’s been drinking constantly since they got there, flitting around the room talking to people. He picked up a ball cap somewhere, and has it turned around backwards on his head. He keeps laughing, loud, this big thing where he throws his head back, and every time he catches Tony’s eye, he fucking winks.

It’s weirdly, distressingly hot, and Tony keeps losing his train of thought bc he can hear Steve across the room, or he’s watching Steve talk to someone else, leaning over them and grinning, or leaning in to talk close, and it keeps making the back of Tony’s neck hot.

God, he wants a drink.

Just when he starts eyeing the line to the keg -- god, he must really be desperate -- Steve appears next to him.

“Heyyyy,” he says, grinning and putting one hand up on the wall next to Tony and leaning in so his breath hits Tony’s cheek. He smells like cheap beer and sweat, and Tony is transported back to college, wants to lick the line of Steve’s neck to see if he tastes like he smells before getting him into bed.

Steve’s eyes are clear, though, and Tony’s reminded that the serum means he can’t get drunk.

“I need a beer pong partner, Wanda over here thinks she and her brother can beat me,” Steve says, loud, and then he leans in to whisper in Tony’s ear, “I think they’re who we’re looking for.”

Tony shivers; his arm is pressed against Steve’s and he feels overheated. He plays it off like he’s just acting the part, and he flutters his eyelashes and looks up at Steve from beneath them. Steve blinks, like he wasn’t expecting that, and Tony bites back a grin -- at least, until Steve lets a slow one bloom on his face.

“I’d love to,” Tony says, low, and Steve takes his hand and tugs him over to the beer pong table.

“Okay,” the guy across the table says. He’s taller than his sister, blonde where she’s brunette, and dressed more like a surfer than Tony is entirely comfortable with in a beer pong opponent. “The point of the game is to get the balls into your opponents’ cups.”

“Oh, I know how it works,” Steve says, all swag and confidence. He bounces a ball off the table and -- catches it on the back of his hand.

Shit,” Tony breathes, and then he looks up to see Steve looking at him. Steve winks and turns back to the guy.

“So what are we doing? House rules, elbow behind the table?”

“Elbow behind the table, yeah. First to drink all their cups loses. Ready?”

“I was born ready,” Steve says, smirking. Tony wonders if it’d be too obvious if he adjusted himself right now.

The guy across the table rolls his eyes. “Ready, Wanda?” he asks his sister.

“Ready, Pietro,” she says (Pietro? Tony asks himself), and Steve reaches out a hand and pulls Tony closer to his side.

“Let’s go, babe,” he says, and Tony holds out his hand for the ball. Steve drops it into his palm and stands back, watching on with a proud look on his face when Tony sinks it. Wanda drinks and then Pietro sinks one.

Steve fakes a grimace and downs the cup, and then he does this, like, squat while he prepares for his own shot. Moves the ball around behind his back like it’s a basketball and he’s doing some trick move. Stands up straight and lets the ball go in a graceful arc --

-- where it hits the edge of a cup and bounces off uselessly. Pietro smirks and Tony reaches up to rub between Steve’s shoulders.

“Can’t get ‘em all,” he says, catching Steve’s eye. He looks disappointed, but he’s just faking it, Tony realizes. He wants to lose. Tony’s not sure why, but Steve looks like he knows what he’s doing here, so Tony nods, small. Steve smiles, that slow one that spreads across his face like sunshine when he’s particularly pleased with something, and then he wraps an arm around Tony’s waist and pulls him into his side, kissing the top of Tony’s head just as Wanda sinks her own shot. Tony groans and reaches for the cup, ready to take one for the team, but Steve gets there first, winks at Tony over the cup as he downs it in one go.

“Gimme the ball, let’s go,” he says, loud.

They go back and forth for a while -- Wanda and Pietro seem to sink most of their shots, Steve does all the drinking, and only a couple of their shots make it in. Steve keeps getting louder, groaning in frustration every time he doesn’t make a shot, shouting C’mon! at himself a bunch.

Tony knows it’s a cover, knows it’s a front, and, honestly, it shouldn’t be as hot as it is.

But it is.

Steve crosses one ankle over the other and leans against the table with one hand, drinking their second-to-last cup down before he drops the empty cup on the floor, throwing both hands up in the air in victory. Wanda’s laughing at him across the table, Pietro’s rolling his eyes again, and Tony -- Tony wants to kiss him, which isn’t a new reaction by any means, but it feels stronger than it’s been in a while.

Who knew Avenger Tony Stark had a thing for frat douchebags just like College Tony Stark?

“Last chance to stay alive,” Pietro says, and Steve stands up straight, angles his body towards Tony just a touch, and holds his arm at a perfect right angle to his body. He uses just his hand to throw the ball and it arcs directly into one of the three cups still left on the other side of the table. Steve doesn’t move beyond a subtle fist pump and Tony is gonna die, holy shit why is this so hot?

He’s still staring at Steve, still standing long and lean and graceful in front of him, when a ball drops into their last cup from across the table. Tony looks over to see Wanda shrugging and Pietro grinning. Steve groans, loud and disappointed, and downs the cup, shrugging.

“We lost,” he says to Tony.

“Uh, yeah, uh-huh, we sure did,” Tony says, eyes on Steve’s wet pink lips.

“Body shot time!” Wanda says, and, what?!

“What?!” Tony yells, looking at Wanda and then back at Steve, who shrugs.

“Losers have to do body shots,” Steve says, sounding apologetic but also grinning, eyes bright.

“I -- okay,” Tony says, because what the hell, right? He strips off his t-shirt, shoves it at Steve’s chest, and looks at Wanda. “Where are we doing this?”

“There’s a bar set up in the other room,” she says, all fake innocence, and Tony nods. Steve is standing behind him, looking a little shell-shocked, so Tony just grabs his hand and drags him along behind him, following the kids.

There’s a small crowd gathered, watching a guy do the tame kind of body shots off a girl lying on the bar -- taking a shot out of a shotglass, licking salt from along her collarbone and biting a lime wedge out of her mouth.

Tony snorts. “Let’s show these kids how it’s done,” he says in a low voice to Steve, who takes a beat and then shakes his head, slow grin spreading across his face.

“Let’s,” he says, and his voice is deep and confident and Tony can’t help it, he shivers again. He plays it off with a waggle of his eyebrows and then, when the girl abandons the bar, he hops up onto it. Steve puts both hands on Tony’s waist to help him jump up -- not that Tony needs it, but he’s not gonna complain. He grins at Steve, pulls his tank off so he’s completely shirtless, incriminating arc reactor hidden behind the flesh-colored bandage Bruce helped him design, and lies down.

Someone hands Steve a bottle of tequila and Tony a lime. Tony sticks the lime in his mouth, grinning up at Steve, who smirks at him and leans in to lick a stripe across Tony’s collarbone.

“Gotta make sure the salt sticks,” he says as he pulls back, and Tony tries to school his face into something that won’t betray quite how turned on he is.

Tony nods, and Steve -- who keeps smirking, goddammit, he’s gotta know how hot that is -- sprinkles salt on the wet spot and then asks, “You ready?” with a waggle of his own eyebrows.

Tony grins as wide as he can with the lime in his mouth and tries to convey bring it with only his face.

Steve licks his lips then bites the bottom one before getting to the business of completing a body shot. He pours tequila into Tony’s belly button, leans down and laps it up, before licking the same stripe across Tony’s collarbone as before. His tongue is so big and powerful and when he gets to Tony’s mouth to bite the lime out, Tony sits up enough to let the lime drop and then puts his own mouth on Steve’s. He holds Steve to him by one hand on his neck, feeling just how warm it is, and, for one incredibly long second, Tony worries he’s completely misread this -- but then Steve’s hands stop flailing around and one of them goes to Tony’s shoulder, the other pressing low on Tony’s hip, squeezing just a bit. Tony gasps into Steve’s mouth, and he can feel the quick grin just before Steve takes advantage and licks into Tony’s mouth.

A cheer goes up around them, and Tony grins, pecks Steve on the lips one more time, and pulls back.

Steve is looking softly at him, face lit up like the sun. Tony feels warm all over and happier than he’s been in a long time.

And then Steve’s eyeline shifts over Tony’s shoulder, and Tony watches as he clicks back into Captain America mode. He gathers Tony into his arms and pretends to kiss his neck so he can whisper into his ear.

“The distraction worked, the kids are ducking out. We gotta follow them.”

“Yeah, okay, exactly what I meant to do, let’s go,” Tony says, shoving every feeling he’s got deep, deep down, grabbing his tank top and pulling it back on as he follows Steve, their hands clasped together again.

Everyone keeps applauding, assuming they’re heading off to fuck in an upstairs bedroom, Tony guesses, and he pretends to duck his face in pleased embarrasment, watching as Steve takes all the praise like the frat douche he’s so fucking good at pretending to be.

The second they get to the dark hallway upstairs, Tony drops Steve’s hand. Steve looks at him weirdly even as they’re both crouching along the wall, trying to be quiet.

“Everything okay?” Steve asks in a whisper.

“Fine,” Tony says, short. “Let’s just get these two and go back to normal.”

Steve stops and stands up straight, frowning. “What do you mean, normal?”

Tony shakes his head. “It doesn’t matter. Come on, we’ve got a job to do.”

“No, it does,” Steve says, stubborn as always. “Do you mean -- were you not -- were you just pretending, downstairs?” He sounds sad and small, two things Steve should never be, in Tony’s opinion.

But it doesn’t really make sense, because that would mean --

“Wait, were you not pretending?” Tony says, and it’s maybe too loud, but this is important, more important than Hydra, honestly.

Steve’s cheeks go pink and he ducks his head to hide it, but Tony sees it. He’s the shell-shocked one now, and he’s about to stutter his way into a possibly embarrassing reveal of his own feelings when Steve lifts his head up, determined look on his face, though his cheeks are still pink.

“I like you, Tony,” he says. His voice is quiet, seeing as they’re still sneaking around, but strong and confident. “I’d like to kiss you again, maybe under better circumstances, if you’d let me.”

“Wh --” Tony says, and then he’s nodding, reaching for Steve. “Yes, yeah, I’d also like that,” and both his arms are around Steve’s neck and Steve has both of his big large wonderful hands on Tony’s waist and he’s smiling into Tony’s mouth and everything is finally, finally, perfect.

And then Steve pulls away. “Shh,” he says when Tony opens his mouth to protest. Steve pushes Tony gently against the wall, puts a hand over his mouth, and cocks his head like he’s thinking.

Tony licks his hand, because he’s a child.

Steve doesn’t move it, just shoots him an amused look, still thinking or -- no, he’s listening. Tony stands there, tries to be as quiet as possible, and then Steve moves his head, pecks Tony on the lips, and spins around to bust his way through the door across from them.

As soon as it opens Tony can see Wanda and Pietro, Pietro with one leg over the windowsill like he’s about to jump out. There’s a beat where the kids don’t move, and Steve uses their shock to move into the room and overpower them. Tony stays where he is, watches as Steve ties their hands together and then pulls out his radio to call Hill and let her know they’ve finished their objective.

Hill and her team are at the frat house within ten minutes, taking Wanda and Pietro in, and Steve and Tony have to go with them to debrief, which Fury always insists they do separately, and then SHIELD is taking them back to the tower, a couple of low-level agents in the front seat of the car, so Tony feels like he can’t say anything, and he’s still -- he thinks he and Steve are both on the same page, but he’s not entirely sure.

And then they’re in the tower together, both of them on Tony’s floor, the rest of the team off -- somewhere.

“So,” Steve says, smirk on his face as he leans toward Tony. He’s still got that fucking backwards baseball cap on his head, and Tony can’t help the huge grin that spreads across his face even as he’s rolling his eyes.

“Get over here and kiss me, asshole,” he says, arms already reaching for Steve again. Steve’s smirk goes softer, morphs into a smile, and then he’s licking into Tony’s mouth and it’s everything Tony’s ever wanted.