Tony trusted Happy with just about everything. The former bodyguard had proved his loyalty time and time again. He was a good man with one of the clearest moral compasses Tony had ever seen. And Happy took every job he was given seriously. Which is why he knew Happy would take the role of babysitter very seriously.
“Pepper already went over emergency numbers with me.” Happy and Tony were standing on the porch of the lake cabin, Tony leaning heavily on his cane.
“I know she did,” Tony said with a smirk, knowing how protective of Morgan his wife could be. “But I trust you regardless. Just don’t let Morgan sweet talk you into too many juice pops.” Happy chuckled and nodded, though they both knew Morgan, with her puppy dog eyes and adorable face was often hard to deny.
“Mister Stark?” Peter poked his head outside. His hear was messy and sticking up in a few weird places.
“Emerging from your study cave I see,” Tony said with a smirk. Peter shrugged and stepped outside, yawning slightly as he did. Tony took in the kid’s exhausted face and his features softened a little.
“I just heard Mrs. Stark tell Morgan that you guys are going into the city?” There was a confusion to his voice, like his exhaustion was keeping him from comprehending what was happening. Tony nodded and wrapped his good arm around Peter’s shoulder.
“Emergency board meeting,” Tony said. “And since Pepper is the CEO and it’s my name on the company, we have to go.” Peter nodded, the tired look still very much prevalent on his face. Even though he was visiting for the weekend, he had been holed up in the guest room (which was unofficially his room) working on a research project that kept being put off because of his duties as Spider-Man. Happy had driven Peter to the cabin yesterday afternoon and the kid had been working on it since then.
“I could take a break and watch Morgan,” Peter offered. Tony smiled and gave Peter’s shoulder a squeeze. He appreciated the thought behind Peter’s offer, but he could tell the kid was exhausted and probably would have a hard time keeping up with Morgan and her boundless energy. On top of that, Tony also knew that Peter needed to focus on his work.
“You do your work,” Tony said. “Happy can watch Morgan. Now skedaddle, before your aunt blames me for you not doing your homework.” He ruffled Peter’s hair and Peter rolled his eyes playfully before heading inside.
“Anything for the kid?” Happy asked, nodding in the direction Peter had gone.
“I thought you were an expert on the Parkers now.” Tony’s voice was full of teasing but Happy still looked flustered by the comment.
“You’re an ass sometimes.”
“Only sometimes?” Happy blew out a breath, still not quite used to Tony teasing him about his relationship status. Tony just chuckled as Happy gave him a look.
“Right sorry,” Tony said. “Just make sure he eats and maybe make him take a break at some point.” Happy nodded as Pepper came outside with Morgan. The five-year-old smiled innocently at Happy, which only slightly concerned Tony.
“We should be back around dinner,” Pepper said. “Morgan, you’ll be good for Happy right?” The little girl nodded and Pepper kissed the top of Morgan’s head before heading to the car.
“And try to let Peter work, okay Maguna?” Morgan pouted a little at her dad’s instructions. She loved playing with Peter when he visited. She especially loved when he’s lift her up and pretend to fly her around like she was a superhero. Tony chuckled and bent down to kiss her head. “Be good or I’ll sell all your toys.” Morgan giggled but nodded. Tony stood up slowly, Happy offering him an arm as he did. Tony just nodded to Happy and patted him on the shoulder. Then, he made his way to the car and he and Pepper drove off.
“So what do you want to today kiddo?” Happy asked once the car was gone.
“Can we play outside Uncle Happy?” Morgan asked sweetly. Her tiny brown eyes stared up at him, twinkling with pure innocence.
“Sure.” Morgan cheered, excitement present in her voice. Her tiny hand reached for Happy’s as she attempted to tug the bigger man off the porch. Happy chuckled, but obliged, letting Morgan lead him towards the yard.
After attempting to chase Morgan around the yard (she was fast for having such little legs), it was time for lunch. Which was good news for Happy who was rightfully exhausted. He was used to chasing Tony around, who for as weird of thing he had gotten up to in his past, he wasn’t a runner. Morgan however moved fast and Happy was rightfully exhausted. But even though he was tired and a little (okay very) red in the face, he scooped Morgan up and carried her inside.
“What do you want for lunch?” Happy asked as he made his way into the kitchen. He set Morgan down and she climbed into her booster seat at the table.
“Nuggets please!” Happy chuckled.
“Okay but you have to have some carrots with it.” Morgan pouted and tried her best puppy eyes on Happy. It was hard to say no to something so cute.
“That’s the deal kiddo,” Happy said. “Besides you helped your mom grow those carrots. I bet they’re delicious.” Morgan made a face, but nodded. “You’ll thank me when you’re older.” Morgan wrinkled her nose, not exactly understanding what Happy meant.
“Can I have the dino nuggets?” She asked. “The one’s daddy bought me? Please?” Happy chuckled but nodded.
“How about I make those and you go see if Peter’s hungry.” Morgan smiled widely and dashed out of the kitchen. Happy set about making Morgan’s lunch as he heard the echoing of her feet through the house.
When he had been hired by Tony years ago, he had never expected this in his job description. Then again, Tony had changed into a vastly different person. But a better person, not that Happy ever judged Tony. Tony had started out as his boss, but had become one of his closest friends. He wasn’t sure when it happened exactly, but he knew that he’d be there for Tony and his family no matter, whether or not Tony was paying him. Tony was a good man and an even better friend. And after all this time, Happy was just glad to be a part of his extended family.
“Hey kid,” Happy said as Morgan tugged Peter into the kitchen. “How goes the homework?” Peter sighed and leaned against the counter as Morgan sat down at the table.
“Pretty close to being done,” Peter said, rubbing the back of his head. “Is this what college is going to be like?”
“Wouldn’t know kid,” Happy said. “Ask Tony, since you’re basically going to MIT anyways.” Peter’s ears reddened and he shrugged.
“I haven’t got in yet,” Peter said. Happy chuckled as he removed Morgan’s food from the microwave. He placed a few carrots on the plate and then placed it in front of Morgan.
“You want a sandwich kid?” Happy asked as Peter sat down next to Morgan. “And you’ll get in kid. Between your grades and your recommendation letters, you’re a shoo-in.”
“Thanks Happy,” Peter said as he handed Morgan a fork. Happy worked on putting together two sandwiches, one for him and one for Peter. He smiled a little as he watched Peter interact with Morgan. It was pretty easy to babysit them both when they were such good kids. He finished the two sandwiches and placed one in front of Peter.
“Eat up kid,” Happy said. “And you too Morgan.”
“Thanks Uncle Happy!” Morgan said, happily chewing on a nugget.
“Yeah thank you Happy,” Peter said before biting into his sandwich. Happy just nodded and kept an eye on them as he started in on his lunch as well.
“I finished!” Happy was sitting in the living room at Morgan’s tea set. “Nice hat.”
“We’re having a tea party!” Morgan said excitedly. Peter chuckled, especially seeing Happy wearing a large, floppy, pink hair. Morgan was wearing a crown and pouring pretend tea into Happy’s cup. “Join us Petey!”
“Yeah come on kid,” Happy said. “There’s a sunhat here for you and everything.” Peter sat down next to Morgan and Morgan positioned the hat on Peter’s head. Happy chuckled and Peter just shrugged. He was about to say something when his phone rang. “Hold on a second kids.” He got up and walked towards the kitchen.
“Hey boss,” Happy said, answering his phone. He removed the hat and placed it on the counter.
“Hey Hap,” Tony said. From the echo on the call, it sounded like he and Pepper were in the car. “You’re on speaker.”
“How’s Morgan?” Pepper asked. “Has she been well-behaved?”
“She’s been great,” Happy said. “No problems here.”
“Glad to hear it,” Tony said. “Listen, I know we said we’ve be back by dinner, but we’ve hit some traffic so it’s probably going to be a little later than that.”
“No worries,” Happy said. “I can continue keeping an eye on both of them. They’re having a tea party right now.” He heard Tony and Pepper chuckle.
“Please take a million photos of that,” Tony said. “And thanks again Hap.”
“Always here to help,” He said before ending the call. He walked back into the living room. He smiled as he watched Peter and Morgan. They were good kids. Anyone else stuck babysitting all day might have been unhappy. But watching Peter and Morgan was a breeze. It certainly helped that Peter was so polite and Morgan had two loving parents who doted on her endlessly.
“Uncle Happy come on!” Morgan said with a smile. Happy chuckled and re-joined the two kids at the tea party table.
Tony drove up slowly to the house, a small smile on his face. After such a long day, he was happy to be home. He glanced over at Pepper who had a similar look on her face.
“Let’s go check on the kids,” Pepper said. Tony nodded and they got out of the car. Pepper walked around to Tony’s side of the car and gently wrapped her arm around the arm that wasn’t holding his cane. He kissed her cheek and then they made their way inside. Tony was surprised at home quiet the house was.
“Where do you think they are?” Pepper asked. Tony paused for a second. He then heard a noise coming from the living room. He smirked and nodded his head in that direction. The two headed towards the living room. Tony smiled at the scene before him.
The TV was on, an animated movie playing. Peter and Morgan were on the couch, both fast asleep. Morgan was curled up against Peter, her head resting against his side. Peter’s arm was wrapped protectively around her. Happy sat on the other side of the couch, watching the movie.
“Hey Hap,” Tony said, getting the other man’s attention. Happy glanced over and nodded when he saw them. He stood up slowly, stretching as he did.
“Welcome home,” Happy said. Pepper smiled at him and let go of Tony’s arm. She walked over to the couch and picked up Morgan. The five-year-old whined a little, but then rested her head on her mother’s shoulder.
“All ready for bed I see,” Pepper said. “Thanks Happy.” He nodded. “I’m going to put Morgan to bed.” She then headed upstairs with Morgan. Tony nodded and walked over to where Peter was sleeping.
“Hey spiderling,” Tony said, ruffling his hair. Peter stirred a little and looked around. “Ah there he is. Maybe a bed would be more comfortable?” Peter nodded and yawned.
“He finished his work a couple of hours ago,” Happy said, putting his hands in his pocket. Tony nodded and patted Peter’s head. “Go sleep kid.”
“Okay,” Peter said yawning again. “Night Mister Stark, night Happy.” He then disappeared up the stairs towards the guest room. Tony walked over to Happy, a content look on his face.
“Piece of cake,” Happy said with a shrug. Tony chuckled and nodded.
“Happy Hogan, world’s best babysitter,” Tony said with a smirk. “Who would’ve guessed?” Happy chuckled and shrugged. “Thanks again Hap. We owe you one. Maybe take the day off after you drive the kid back? On me.”
“Like May would me do that,” Happy said with a smirk. Tony chuckled and patted his shoulder. “But thanks. See you tomorrow boss.” And then Happy headed out. Tony smiled to himself, grateful for a good friend like Happy. A friend who would always look out for him and his family, no matter what.