Tony and Frigga took Loki’s absence the next few days surprisingly well, Bruce even made sure, Tony would go to bed at a reasonable hour and somehow convinced J.A.R.V.I.S. to, in Tony’s words, ‘betray his master’ and keep Tony locked out of the workshop, if he didn’t sleep at least six hours in the last 48. Bruce would have liked 24 hours more, but with Tony’s very successful all-nighters at times, he decided to give him double the time.
While Bruce cared for Tony the way Loki felt he should, Frigga cared for Loki the same. Every few hours she brought him food and drinks, sometimes even Runa. At times like that, the overworked Loki would fall into a fond smile and cradled the sweet girl in his arms. The girl brought a bright light into both his and Tony’s often dark lives.
Loki had always understood what sorcerers’ madness was. When a sorcerer’s mind and body did not cooperate correctly. When they were not in sync. His body and his mind weren’t always perfectly in sync, but all sorcerers he had spoken to over the years had that, Humans had that, Asgardians as well, surely Jötnar were not any different. He also knew what initially had made him question himself, the knowledge that he was not Odin’s and Frigga’s son, that he couldn’t be Thor’s brother. That he was a Frost Giant. He was the one thing he was always told to hate, to fear and Odin never had any plans on telling him that. He should have told him, long before he had married Sigyn. If his sons would have been birthed in Frost Giant form, Loki himself would have accused Sigyn of disloyalty.
There were several ways to treat madness, none actually proven to heal, mostly because said sorcerer was already too far gone and died of self-inflicted injuries later on. The only proven way, sorcerers had lived on for years, after identifying madness, was with an anchor. There were only a handful that had anchored themselves to someone else, one even to a minor sorcerer, that had not fallen into madness. What a lovely tale that must have been.
As it seemed, the anchored person did not need to be a stable person themselves, but a good relationship between the two seemed for better results, as once stated, when a sorceress and her anchored sister had fallen into disagreement and the sorceress’ health became significantly worse.
‘Binding mind and body to another’, Frigga had said, and Loki understood how that would be. This would also require for Tony to eat a golden apple, so any injuries that befell Loki would not hurt Tony as much. They could not kill him, that’s why it was just similar to binding life sources together, but any wounds would be seen on the others body and to a certain extent felt from the other. It could make for an interesting experience and for a difficult time on the battlefield.
The binding itself was different from the mind-binding they’d already done, after all bodies did not only mean the heads. They would not have to be completely naked, but they had to be very close to one another and then Loki had to bind them together with his Seiðr. He would have to wait at the moment, for his Seiðr to recover. That would take at least another month.
With a small smile on his face, he reached the kitchen, having at least solved the puzzle of how to anchor himself. “Hello, love”, he spoke with a bright smile on his face and then took Runa from Frigga’s arms, smacking a loud kiss on the chuckling child’s forehead.
“Lokes.” A sleep-overdue Tony wrapped his arms around Loki and placed a soft kiss on Loki’s cheek.
“How have you been?”, Loki asked, slightly concerned.
“Brucie’s mean to me”, Tony whined.
Loki smirked and looked to the man, who silently sipped his coffee. “I believe Brucie to be very reasonable.”
“But he won’t let me work, till I’ve slept. You know how bad I sleep, when you’re not around.”
“Well, I’ll be around tonight, love. And Runa too.”
“You’re done?”, Bruce asked from the table.
“Yep, figured it out, now I’ll just have to wait for my Seiðr to recover and for you, darling, to hopefully eat a golden apple.”
“You really want to keep my foul mouth around for centuries?”
“I said eternally, didn’t I?”
Softly Tony pressed his forehead against Loki’s. “I have to talk to someone before I... I know you want me to...”
“I would never pressure you. I am fine with a few decades, a few years, a few months, I know the consequences are big, especially for a human. I will spend my life with you, if it’s the last thing I do.”
Loki pressed his lips against Tony’s forehead and softly smiled at him. Runa gurgled in his arm and Tony grinned back. “Let’s go out.”
“Us two? Or us three?”
“Two. I want you to meet someone, I don’t know how well she is.”
“Do I need to wear a disguise?”
“For the drive, yes, I’ll tell you when it’s okay.”
“Who do you want me to be?”
“How about... Bruce, can he be you for the day?”
“Wait, what?”, Bruce questioned, obviously confused. Softly Loki kissed Runa and she giggled, when he let a bit of Seiðr flow around.
“We will soon be back, dearest.”
“I’m gonna take Loki out for a drive, well, flight, but cause he should be on house arrest and only in Avengers facilities, he needs a disguise. It’s S.H.I.E.L.D. knowledge that you’re bunking with me, so...”
“Fine, but don’t do anything weird.”
“Like?”, Loki asked, slightly amused.
“Like kiss your husband with my face.”
“Of course. Mother, you’ll look after Runa?”
“Certainly, dear.” With a soft smile, Frigga took Runa from his arms and Loki walked over to Bruce.
“Can I take a quick look into your mind, Bruce, so our cover is kept, if we were to run into trouble?”
“Umm, yeah, doesn’t hurt me, right?”
“I will only tap into the basic things. If I were to dig into something you don’t want me to know, it would hurt us both. It will also be a two-way street; you’ll be able to see into my mind as well.”
“Should we sit?”
“Yes. Tony, will you get everything ready?”
“Sure.” Tony quickly kissed Runa and then grinned towards Bruce. “Permission to mess with Cap or the others if we walk into them?”
Bruce seemed not amused, but when Tony gave him big eyes, he agreed with a groan. “Fine. But I get a detailed record.”
“I could show you later”, Loki offered.
“Jay!” Tony walked out of the room and Loki and Bruce sat down opposite of each other.
“Let’s have a look then.” Loki laid his hand on Bruce’s forehead and peered inside.
The early years of Robert Bruce Banner, he quickly skipped over, the only important thing there was the memory of his father murdering his mother, which he wouldn’t go into. Then came Harvard, which centred around a beautiful dame named Elizabeth Ross. After that followed Culver University, Loki remembered Doctor Selvig, Jane and Darcy also had ties with the institution. There was Thaddeus Ross and becoming Hulk, which Bruce had unsurprisingly little recollection of, Bruce on the run, staying in different parts of the world, then Harlem with Thaddeus Ross again and lastly getting found by Romanoff and the events of the Attack on New York. Tony’s offer to stay in the tower was weirdly important and the joy he felt while teaching Darcy, especially because she was asking a lot of questions.
When Loki let go, both men had tears in their eyes. “Shit”, Bruce whispered, and Loki chuckled.
“Could say the same, Bruce.”
“Now I feel like my life was easy.”
“It was not. We just had rapidly different experiences.”
“Tha...” Loki stopped Bruce with a hand on his mouth.
“We won’t speak of it openly, Bruce.”
“Yes, lets.” They nodded at each other and got up, while Loki shapeshifted into Bruce-Loki. Bruce stared at him. “This looks... wrong.”
“Well, it’s not a mirror-image, Bruce”, he spoke back in Bruce’s voice, which made Bruce cringe more.
“That’s what I sound like?!”
Bruce-Loki laughed at him and turned to smile at Tony who was standing in the doorway.
“This is slightly creepy, I gotta admit.”
“Let’s go, fellow Doctorate.”
“Fellow? I graduated from M.I.T. at seventeen, Brucie-bear, don’t start calling me Doctor now, I hate that.”
“Sure thing, kid genius.”
Tony grinned. “Let’s go.”
Tony and Bruce-Loki jogged out of the room, leaving a mind-boggled Bruce behind.
“Alright, M.I.T., why are we going to D.C.?”
“To see someone. And maybe, while we’re there, we can bug Fury.”
Bruce-Loki grinned. “Are we going to test if they can find out I’m not Bruce?”
“Oh yeah, definitely.”
Bruce-Loki's grin grew even wider and he pushed his glasses back. “I don’t like planes very much.”
“Yeah, get it, enclosed space.”
“Actually, it’s the noise and the uncertainty.”
“We’ll land soon. Happy’s going to drive us.”
“Does he know? About me?”
“Haven’t told him yet.”
“This will be fun.”
“Boss, Doctor Banner.”
“Mister Hogan.” Bruce-Loki stuck out his hand and shook Happy’s hand with the most earnest expression he could master.
“Where to, Boss?”, Happy asked Tony, after the two men got into the vehicle.
“First, gotta pay a visit, while I’m in town, you know where, after that, the Triskelion.”
“Will Doctor Banner accompany you to both?”
“Yeah, we’ll stick together on this one, he’s like family.”
“Aren’t young people ‘shipping’ the ‘science-bros’, Tony?”
Tony laughed. “Yeah. Weird, you’re not that gay.”
Bruce-Loki blushed. “I am... Tony!”
“Straight as an arrow?”
“That you’ll have to ask Clint. I’m pretty sure even his arrows are slightly bent after all that usage.”
“Any problems, M.I.T.?”
“Y’ know, reminding me how we should both be smarter than comparing Universities, I’ll kill that conversation right now.”
“How are the upgrades for the team coming along?”
“Oh, yeah, made Cap a new suit, don’t think he’ll like it though, Barton and Romanoff will totally love their new stuff, when I give it to them, so zip it.”
“And for me?”
“Righty, the stretchy pants are coming along quite nicely. I think I’m going to use a similar material on Loki’s new armour. He doesn’t really like the armour I made.”
“Hey, don’t talk about my husband that way.”
“You’re a diva too.”
“Is that a compliment I smell, Banner?”
“Just acknowledging how you’re both very similar: smart, mischievous, diva...”
“You’re on two very, very different levels of two very different scales.”
“I’ll have you know; the girls fawn over me.”
“And the media too, diva.”
“Please, one smile from Loki and the ladies would all fall unconscious.”
Bruce-Loki gave Tony a side-eye. “And you’re sure he isn’t using any spells for that?”
“Zip it Brucie-bear, my Lokes is just that handsome, right Happy?”
“I’m not getting into this.”
“Is Loki gorgeous, Happy?”, Tony asked again.
“Can’t say he isn’t good-looking, boss.”
“Thank you, see, Brucie-bear, even Happy likes Loki.”
“Didn’t say I didn’t like him. Just don’t find him handsome enough to make people pass out.”
“He could summon an army with a smile.”
“Don’t tell that to Fury.”
“He could summon an army of lookalikes.”
“Lookalikes or doubles?”
“Oh, that would be even better. Now you’re giving me kinky ideas, Brucie-bear.”
Bruce-Loki rolled his eyes. “You have a very short attention span, Tony.”
“We’re there, boss.”
“Traffic’s faster than in N.Y.C.”
“Sure is. Wait for us, kay?”
“That’s my job.”
Tony and Bruce-Loki got out of the car, quickly disappearing into a discreet house.
“Mister Stark, we didn’t know you were coming.” A dark-haired woman scrambled to her feet.
“How is she?”
“She’s having one of her better days, Mister Stark.”
“Her niece is with her.”
“Oh, great, haven’t seen her in a while. Will you tell her, that I’m here?”
Tony nods for Bruce-Loki to follow them and they walk up some stairs and down a hall into a small apartment. The woman goes into another room and talks for another minute, before coming back and nodding to Tony before she left.
“Okay, turn back.”
Loki sighed as he finally took his form again. “It is way more difficult to keep a straight face around you, love, especially when you start talking about me.”
“Hey, I love you, so of course I will talk about you.”
Loki smiled, before turning to the opening door. “Tony.”
“Hey Shar, how is she?”
The blond lady sighed and smiled at him. “Actually, really good. You haven’t come up with any more bright ideas to fix your godmother like you fix your bots, right?”
“No.” Tony chuckled. “Loki, love, may I introduce to you, Sharon Carter, my somehow, somewhere, cousin maybe? Shar, this is Loki, my husband.”
Sharon stared at Loki for a while, before hissing: “You actually married him? Congratulations. I heard a lot of stuff about you, Loki, I’m sure only ten percent is true, but that’s enough to know you make him happy.”
Relieved Loki smiled at her. “Thank you, Miss. It is an honour to be here. I had believed the only family Tony had left, was the one he made himself, but to know he wasn’t fully alone all those years, that calms my heart a little.”
“No, he always had us, the Carters, at his back. Not in public, though, with the name. I think Rhodey’s the only one that really knows not just about Aunt Peggy, but me too.”
“Should we go in?”
Sharon nodded to the door and Loki nervously slipped his hand into Tony’s as they followed her.
“Hey, Aunt Peg, look who’s here.”
An old woman with grey hair smiled at them. “Tony, dear, what guilt brings you this time?”
Tony laughed and left Loki behind to sit down at her side. “They gotta prove my involvement first, Peggy.”
Peggy didn’t look at Loki, she looked at Tony, while he babbled about a lot of things he’s done, things he’s worked on.
“What does she have?”, Loki quietly asked Sharon.
“On her worst days?”
“Back in the forties, crying about Steve.”
“Rogers? That’s why he doesn’t mention it.”
“He doesn’t want her to worry. She doesn’t even know that he went missing in 2009.”
“It’s like he turned ten years younger.”
“She asks about Obadiah sometimes. Tells him he shouldn’t trust him, that Howard shouldn’t either. Sometimes she thinks they are still alive.”
“Does she think he’s him?”
“Not when I’m around, but I’m sure it has happened.”
They look over to the two and Peggy finally noticed someone new in the room. “Now, who is this lovely lady?”
“Loki, Miss Carter. It is lovely to meet you.” He sat down on the other side of the woman and smiled at her.
“Are you Tony’s new gal?”
Loki laughed a little. “You could say that, Miss Carter. I’m married to him.”
“Tony!”, she slapped the man on the arm, “How could you not tell me?”
“Surprise?” Loki snickered again, before Peggy turned to him.
“Where did he pick you up anyhow?”
“Pick me up? Oh Miss Carter, you’re mistaken, I was not easily convinced.”
“Were you not?”
“Oh no, took me three years to finally admit that I loved him and then he was constantly flirting, the charmer, of course I was no easy win.”
Peggy laughed and took his hand. “Where are you from, sweetheart?”
“Born or raised?”
“Oh, where’s that?”
“It’s a whole ‘nother planet, Miss Carter.”
She looked surprised for a moment and then turned to Tony again. “You finally did it? Space-travel?”
“He found me.”
“He? Oh, Loki, I’m so sorry.”
“It is no trouble, Miss Carter, I don’t mind.”
“I thought aliens would be more... green or blue or something.”
Loki laughed a little and looked to Tony. “Shall I?”
“Course, love. We’re all family here.”
Swiftly Loki let his guise fall and switched his clothes in the same movement. Peggy’s eyes went wide as she smiled brightly.
“Thank you, Miss Carter.” Carefully he looked over to Sharon, who had twitched a little at his transformation.
“Should we show them the video, Lokes?”
“Are you sure about the first?”, Loki tried to remind him subtly, as Steve was in it. Tony sighed loudly and looked to Sharon. Peggy seemed irritated. “Alright, dear, let’s watch both. Sharon, why don’t you sit down as well, Miss Carter, would you want to hold my hand? I always get nervous watching it, a strong woman like you will surely help me get through it.”
Sharon nodded and Peggy grabbed his hand tighter. Tony walked over to the television and inserted something, quickly selecting the first video and laying his arm around Sharon as he sat down.
It opens with Rhodey speaking to the camera: “This is crazy. I almost wasn’t invited. The only time I heard of Loki before yesterday was, maybe three years ago? Loki saved Tony. Nobody knew, except Pepper and me.”
Pepper laughed a little. “Yes, a month ago Tony and I were still going out. It was okay, wasn’t Loki’s fault. Tony and I had grown apart, I hated how he always risked his life. But Loki was like that too, three years back, he risked his life to keep Tony safe. I should have seen it back then, that they loved each other, I guess I was a bit blind, because Tony flirts with anyone and anything that moves. He’s different now. Not Tony, no, Loki. He was so innocent back then; he’s been through a lot.”
The screen switched to Happy. “Do they love each other? Are you kidding me? Loki would die for Tony. We talked about that back then, love. He told me he would fight it, the love, he didn’t really fight, not back then, but when he came back, when he realised, he had another chance, man did Loki fight. Tony almost gave up in between there. He fucked up, but Loki did that too. Could’ve seen it coming, they are like... two champions. They both want to be the best, both want their own space, want to show that they are the best. They are a power-couple. If they get along, we can have world-peace, if they don’t, oh man, those weeks Tony was always in a shitty attitude and Loki didn’t want to talk to anyone about it. Was like the cold war.”
There was a small snippet of Darcy standing next to Jane. “I’m not saying Loki is the better looking Odinson, I mean I haven’t seen his body. Thor, man he has muscles, but Loki, Loki got that face.” Jane turned bright red and groaned a little at Darcy.
Next up were Natasha and Clint. “Loki makes him better, that’s for sure.”
“I don’t know if better, Nat, more stable, maybe. Don’t know if Tony makes him better, either, but they’re already like mum and dad, I’d rather have them kissing than fighting. It’s gonna be hella more fun with both of them around.”
“We’re not here to have fun.”
When Bruce and Steve showed up on screen together, Loki got a bit worried. “Y’ know that’s the thing I’m really proud of. Back then, if a guy loved another guy... I’m really happy for them. Should have been legal a lot sooner than it was. Love is love.”
“Yeah. Tony and Loki are made for each other. Wish I had that. Wish I could have that.”
“Me too, lost everyone because of the ice.”
“At least you don’t have to share the body with a green rage monster.”
“That’s what Stark called the Hulk?”
“Called him enormous too.”
“Without the Hulk, this wouldn’t have happened.”
“Without you, this wouldn’t have happened either.”
“I only talked to him, answered questions.”
“The man out of time and the man that was already there when all of us were born.”
“Guess that’s why I’m walking him down the aisle.”
The screen went dark.
“Steve?”, Peggy finally whispered.
“Yeah, Peg, Steve. We found him”, Tony softly said.
“Is he happy?”
“I think so. He’s slowly facing the reality.”
“Why hasn’t he come?”
“I think he still has to figure out, who he is, has to find a stable life. He’ll come, Peg, I’m sure.”
“Probably doesn’t want to see me all old and wrinkled.”
“Well”, Loki said, realising Tony had paused the video, “You’re still a young lady compared to me.”
“Yes. I’m at least ten times older than you.”
“Oh my.” Peggy chuckled and then Tony showed the actual video of the wedding.
Somewhere in there, Peggy started to drift, she chuckled a bit, when Tony showed the video of Runa in Tony’s arms as Loki filmed them, while they walked around the mansion. When she was sleeping, Tony and Sharon talked in hushed voices.
“Can I put a protection spell on her?”, Loki asked after a while, not to Tony, but to Sharon.
“Why? Is there danger?”
“No immediate, I don’t think so. I just wish for her to be protected and in no pain.”
“Could you repair her...”
“Her brain? As I have said already, love, I’m no healer. I could maybe stop it from progressing more, if you wish.”
Tony looked to Sharon and she sighed, before nodding. “Do it.”
“It will not stop her eventual death though.”
Loki sighed again and got up, gathering his Seiðr and then pressing his lips against Peggy’s forehead, the protection wrapping himself around her brain, like Frigga had spelled his womb. He tried, but he wouldn’t really know if it could work, the healing. Brains work in mysterious ways.
He smiled tired, when he turned around. “I will have to transform back now, dear, we should go.”
“Thank you, Loki.”
“Always a pleasure, lovely Sharon.”
He hugged her and then took Tony’s hand after he had given his goodbye as well and collected his things. In the other room, Loki shifted back into Bruce-Loki and they went downstairs.
“I really need a coffee, Tony.”
“You good otherwise?”
“Yeah, just didn’t think we’d be there that long.”
“We can stop for coffee on the way, Doctor Banner.”
“Thank you, Mister Hogan.”
“No problem. I doubt S.H.I.E.L.D. has good coffee.”
Bruce-Loki leaned back in his seat and watched while Tony tapped away on his phone. “You never stop working, do you, not even for a moment.”
“You know me, Brucie-bear, always working, never stopping.”
“J.A.R.V.I.S., how long has Tony slept in the last 48 hours?”, Bruce-Loki asked, guessing that the phone was connected to the A.I.
“Four hours, Doctor Banner”, chimed the A.I. from the phone.
“And would you consider the work Tony is doing workshop or lab work?”
“Yes, Doctor Banner.”
“Then shouldn’t the same rules apply here as well?”
“Bruce!”, Tony shouted and then groaned as the screen went dark.
“I will see you at home, Doctor Banner.”
“Nice doing business with you, J.A.R.V.I.S.”, Bruce-Loki answered with a grin.
“I shouldn’t have taken you with me, Bruce.”
“Well who else is going to keep you in line, Tony?”
“Happy, I need a big coffee as well, Doctor dad and J.A.R.V.I.S. have an alliance.”
“Doctor dad?”, Bruce-Loki laughed loudly.
“Mister Hogan, do we have the shield: ‘baby on board’ at the back of the car?”
“I can get one while you’re at the Triskelion.”
“Happy! Everyone’s against me today.”
“No, you’re just showing that you’re very much acting like you don’t give a shit, not even about yourself.”
“But I do.”
“Then get your shit together and straighten up and grow a fucking backbone, Tony.”
“You’re not Doctor Banner!”, Happy suddenly shouted and Tony grinned.
“My, Mister Hogan, what makes you think such dubious things?”
“Banner would never curse.”
Bruce-Loki rolled his eyes. “True.”
“And your sass was showing. Doctor Banner is reserved.”
“Also, true. I will leave the talking to you then, Tony.”
“Why are you out here anyway?”, Happy asked.
“Oh, I just followed him.”
“You do that often?”
“Quite, the best adventures come from it.”
“Mister Stark, what a surprise.”
“Fury, man, how are you?”
“I’m fine. Why are you here?”
“Surprise inspection, how are the new carriers coming along?”
“Slowly. And you, Doctor Banner?”
“Oh, I made the bad decision of following him onto a plane and am just waiting to go back to my lab.”
Fury smirked a little. Bruce-Loki stayed focused. “Can I see them?”
“They are non-functional.”
“Obviously.” Tony rolled his eyes. “So, can I fix that for you?”
Fury bit back a groan. “Fine. Follow me.”
They did. Bruce-Loki was looking interested at all the things going on in the lab. No one batted him an eye. It wasn’t only that Bruce would be interested, hands behind his back, leaning in closely, but not touching. No, Loki loved this as well. To him this was seeing how far technology was, how far science had come since he last took close interest in it.
“Like what you see Doctor Banner?”, Fury asked next to him.
“I’m just observing, Director Fury.”
“Stark got you working on something good back in New York?”
“If that’s your way of saying, I could do so much better work here, I decline.” Bruce-Loki turned to look over Fury’s shoulder. “He won’t like that Tony is working here as well.”
“What do you mean?”
“He doesn’t sleep, they both rarely do. We established house rules. More for Tony. He isn’t supposed to work on anything until he’s slept more.”
“And you-know-who is going to be pissed?”
“Worried. Someone has to be awake; they trust J.A.R.V.I.S. but it is very rare that nobody is in the room with her, even when asleep.”
With a bright grin Tony walked over. “Hey Fury, is Spangles here?”
“Captain Rogers is probably in the gym around this time.”
Bruce-Loki sighed, before Tony’s next sentence even came out. “Let’s go, Brucie-bear.”
Fury looked between them as Tony stalked out. “See what I have to deal with? Good day Director Fury.”
“Have fun. And get some sleep yourself, Banner, you look exhausted.”
“Will do.” He sighed again, before walking after Tony, a faster stride to catch up with him.
“Gym, gym, gym”, singsonged Tony before going over to sing: “When Captain America throws his mighty shield.”
Bruce-Loki grinned. “All those who oppose his shield must yield”, he sang while they drove the elevator.
Tony laughed. “Howard hated the series they did. Always put him on a pedestal.”
“Not a shield?” Bruce-Loki snickered, and Tony laughed loudly, before they captured their faces and stepped off the elevator. Tony jogged to the gym.
“Stars ‘n stripes!”, Bruce-Loki heard Tony shout and a loud groan came out of the room. Bruce-Loki smiled fondly, when he got to the room.
“What are you doing here, Stark?”
“Oh, can’t one see their best friend?”
“I don’t see Rhodey anywhere around here.”
“Oh, come on, Cap, you know you missed me.”
“It’s been what, a month?”
Bruce-Loki sighed silently. “He was worried, Rogers.”
Only now, Steve noticed him. “Banner! Sure, you want to be here?”
“Well, I am. And he is. How are you?”
Steve rubbed the back of his neck. “I’m good. Training, you know.”
“New York is so boring without you, Spangles!”, Tony expressed, sounding more and more like a child.
“He took a vacation day”, Bruce-Loki translated.
“And Rhodey is way too far away.”
“And would be immensely worried.” The adverb made Steve’s eye twitch, shit. “I think I’m spending too much time with a certain British guest.”
That calmed Steve. “How are things in New York?”
“The weatherman hasn’t said anything about it raining aliens, so...”, Tony said.
“He is still working on an alarm for any threats and minimizing response-time.”
“Last J told me he went on a non-sobriety trip with Doctor Selvig.”
“The man is a bad influence”, Bruce-Loki stated.
“Which one?”, Tony asked with a smirk.
“Oh no... Either answer would get me hate. Forget I said anything. Are you coping, Rogers?”
“You still haven’t used the StarkPhone I gave you, Stevie-boy, I feel insulted.”
“I’m sure you do.”
“And now don’t say: “It’s not you, it’s me, please, honey, I can’t go through such heart-break again.”
Steve stared at Bruce-Loki who contained a grin. “I am not, Stark, are you okay?”
“Another fan-favourite, come on, Stevie you don’t believe in the secret romance between us or that you came through time, after Howard had rejected you, so the young impressionable star-struck son of his would accept your love?”
“What? Banner what is he talking about?”
“Fanfiction. The Avengers have fans and people are making up stories about what went on behind the scenes. You don’t want to look into it, it gets sexual really fast.”
“People are writing about real people? Things that aren’t real? For fun?”
“We should keep him away from the internet in its entirety.”
“What?”, Bruce-Loki asked Tony irritated, “Why would we do that?”
“Because the internet is for porn!”
Steve turned blood-red and Bruce-Loki laughed out loudly. “Stark!”
“How can you... Please leave.”
“It’s a video, Rogers, but you wouldn’t understand the reference.”
“You really need to do a course on the Internet. Where’s Legolas?”
Tony grabbed his phone and called Clint; it was loud enough for the others to hear. “What’s going on, Stark?”
“You gotta teach Cap about the internet, Legolas. I thought that would be his first course when joining you and Widow here, but he can’t even use a phone. I mean, Jane’s teaching Thor how to use a phone and he’s what? Ten times older than our fossil here?”
“Hey!”, Steve protested.
“Where are you?”, Clint asked, and Tony grinned at Steve.
“Be there in five.” Steve groaned as Clint hung up.
“At least you get a tutor, Rogers.”
“But it’s Barton!”
“Would you rather have it be Nat?”
“I’d rather have you.”
Bruce-Loki blushed a little. “Well, come back to New York then, I won’t join S.H.I.E.L.D.”
“I am needed here.”
“Then deal with it”, Tony exclaimed, “The spies know their stuff.”
It did not take long for Clint to get there, but while they expected him to come from the door like a normal person, Clint suddenly fell from the ceiling.
“How are the vents?”, Tony asked.
“Excellent training courses.”
“I can truly see the circus in you.”
“So, Cap needs to learn how to use a phone.”
“And the internet, Legolas, but we all know what the internet is for right?”
“For porn!”, Clint singsonged and Steve groaned.
“Please, Stark, I will only need to know how to use a phone to call someone.” Steve seemed desperate to get out of the deal.
“Call? Call?!”, Clint almost shrieked and turned to Tony. “I’m gonna get him to text. Don’t worry, I’m on the case now, what do I get for it?”
“Better arrows? A new suit? Dibs on the next five movie-nights at the tower?”
“I’ll take the dibs, the others I will get anyway at some point when you get bored. Nice seeing you, Stark, Bruce, I’ll find you later, Cap.” He jumped up and climbed back into the vents.
Bruce-Loki snickered and then turned to Tony. “Are we done here? We do have to get back to New York.”
“Yeah, we’re done. Cap, I expect a call by the end of the week.”
Steve groaned again. “Fine. Get home safe and greet the others.”