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Father’s Day

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     Tony lounged in his king sized bed. It was only seven in the morning and he was content to just rest quietly for a bit. Pepper didn’t have any meetings for him today and most of the team was in the Bahamas for a well deserved vacation. Maybe Peter and him could take the day to relax as well?

     Half a year ago, the billionaire would have been in his lab, empty scotch bottles strewn all around him. He wouldn’t sleep until his body gave out and he collapsed or someone - usually Bruce or Natasha - forced him to eat and sleep. He would’ve run himself into the ground with his ptsd and self loathing.

     But then he got Peter. This sweet, wonderful boy who just so happened to be an extremely powerful mutant and a genius. A kid who’d been abused and deprived of simple necessities like food and a warm bed his entire life. But  would rather sacrifice himself than let anyone else get hurt.

     Tony dropped the alcohol immediately after adopting Peter - most of his bad habits, actually. That’s why he was sleeping in now.

     “Morning dad!” His bedroom door flew open, leaving a decently sized dent in the wall behind it. Peter looked at the damage sheepishly. “Oops.”

      Well, Tony thought, so much for sleeping in .

     “It’s okay bambino.” Tony chuckled, incredibly pleased the teen hadn’t flinched or backed away in fear of being hit. He’d come a long way and Tony couldn’t be prouder. “Come’re.”

     Only after a minutes hesitation, Peter jumped onto the plush bed and into his dad’s open arms. His skinny body resting against the older heroes chest. Grim moved from his position at the door to the end of the bed, posture relaxed yet vigilant.

     “You ‘eep o’ay?” Peter’s words were muffled by his dad’s AC/DC t-shirt, the soft smell of laundry detergent still entwined with the worn fabric.

     “I slept pretty well.” He rubbed circles across Peter’s back, feeling the lumps of his spine. “How ‘bout you kiddo? Your bodyguard stand watch or snuggle?”

     Peter nuzzled closer, the calloused hands soothing his nerves and removing tension from his muscles. “Both. He sometimes lays beside me and sleeps there or just stretches out on the floor.”

     Tony nodded into the curls tickling his chin. “I was thinking we’d tinker in the lab for a bit, then just hangout up here in the penthouse and watch movies.” 

     “That sounds awesome! Maybe we ca-“ Peter ducked his head when his stomach growled. Subconsciously flinching away from Tony when he leaned back to get into a more comfortable position.

     “Time for breakfast.” Slowly, Tony eased himself into a sitting position, making sure his actions were visible to Peter. “Spider baby’s gotta eat. And I’m pretty hungry too so...” He added to hopefully make the kid feel less guilty about eating. 

     “O-okay.”

      Excitement slightly deflated, Peter crawled out of the warm cushions and stood before his dad. He looked up at the man expectantly, seemingly unsure of himself. Grim bumped his head against the teen’s thigh and whined until Peter scratched his ears - something the giant dog loved. 

     “Is it okay if I go out first? I uh… need to do something.”

     Tony arched an eyebrow. “Sure bud. Everything okay?” The kid was stepping from foot to foot and fiddled with the sleeves of his ACE themed pajamas. 

     “Yeah. I um, uh… I’ll call you in about ten minutes. Veni.” (Come.) With that, he darted into the hall and out to the penthouse kitchen, Grim in tow.

**********

     True to his word, ten minutes later Friday informed Tony that Peter was ready for him in the kitchen. The billionaire stepped out cautiously, slowly making his way to the large conjoined kitchen and living space.

     Peter was standing by the kitchen island - Grim’s ever present black form sitting beside him - with a plate of waffles and neatly cut fruit in hand. He smiled nervously 

     “Happy Father’s Day!”

     Tony - the calm and suave businessman he was - just stood there, mouth agape. 

     “I made you um- there’s presents…” Peter rambled on, nodding his head towards the pile of presents on the living room floor. “You don’t have to ya know open them but… um… there’s a card t-too.” He set the waffles aside. “But if you don’t want it- I mean them, that’s- it’s totally fine. No big deal-“

     Peter almost fell over with how fast and forcefully Tony collided with him. Strong arms easily lifted the unnaturally light teen off the floor and into a bone crushing hug. Surprisingly, Peter didn’t flinch. Even more surprising, was that Tony was trembling. The shoulder of Peter’s acquired MIT hoodie grew wet as the man of iron cried.

     “I love you Peter,” he took a shaky breath, “you’re the best thing to ever happen to me. You know that?” He tightened his hold slightly. “You’re my one and only. And I… just… thank you.” 

     “You’re the best thing to ever happen to me too.” A few tears slipped down Peter’s cheeks, but he couldn’t keep the smile off his face. “I love you dad.”

     The two stayed that way for a while; just holding each other and silently thanking whatever god was out there, that they had each other.

     Peter’s stomach growled again which caused Tony to laugh. He set his son down and wiped his eyes. “Let dig into these glorious Eggos shall we?” 

     The teen nodded fervently and took a big bite of his syrup and butter drenched waffles. 

     Tony’s smile grew at the sight of his kid attacking a stack of fifty plus waffles, syrup smeared across his one cheek. The kid was thoroughly adorable. His kid.

**********

     After they’d finished eating and Peter cleaned up - he always helped and insisted that he clean up - they migrated to the spacious living room. Tony sat on the large sofa as directed, with Grim snoozing at his feet, while Peter presented him his gifts.

     He opened the card first. It had Ironman on the front with You’re my Superhero in bold letters underneath. After reading the inscription as well as Peter’s heartfelt note he felt more tears building behind his eyes. He pulled his son into another hug and placed a noisy smooch on his cheek. 

     There were over a dozen gifts, most were inventions from Peter; like blueprints for a new Iron Man suit, a fancy watch made from nanotechnology and other devices that would help in the lab or contribute towards Stark Industries. While others were store bought or homemade gifts that were a correlation between the other avengers. 

     One was a mug that read World's dumbest genius which Clint and Scott helped order. Three new pairs of sunglasses that Steve, Bucky and Bruce helped pick out. A new suit that Pepper and her husband Happy had tailored with the colors and style given from Peter, an AC/DC shirt that Thor and Loki helped chose along with an expensive car cleaning kit from Sam.

     One of his all time favorite gifts, was a set of red and gold pajamas with Irondad written across the front that Natasha designed and ordered special. A little note attached that read - For a perfect boyfriend and proud irondad. Love Natasha 

      The best gift though, was a framed photo of him and Peter laughing, Their hair and clothes covered in foam. Tony remembered that day vividly. He had accidentally set something on fire in the lab which prompted U to beep frantically and spin around in circles. While Dum-E let loose with the fire extinguisher. After five chaotic minutes the fire had been put out and both Starks covered with white foam. The back of the frame was inscribed with a short little message that made his heart melt.

      To the hero I’ve always looked up to, and the man I’ve always strived to become. - Happy Father’s Day, love Peter   

     And if Tony wasn’t crying before, he was full out sobbing now. 

     Peter - so selfless and giving - frantically tried to correct his mistake. Tony shushed him and quelled the boy’s fears. Insisting he’d done absolutely nothing wrong and that the man of iron was going soft.

     Once Tony had calmed down enough to stop crying and fully express how much these amazing gifts meant to him, any worry and anxiety Peter had left him. He hadn’t messed things up but instead made his dad happy.

     “There’s one more thing I need to show you.” 

     Peter took his dad’s hand and effortlessly pulled the man to his feet. He led them outback and into the Compound garden, out looking the dense forest of upstate New York.

     “Just stand back with Grim, okay.”

     Tony nodded, completely unsure as to where this was going and waited by the herb bed as Peter walked to the middle of the yard and yelled, “Veni ad me. Veni ad me.” (Come to me. Come to me.)

     A loud screech echoed through the forest as something large and Pterodactyl-like swooped across the sky. The creature landed only a few feet from Peter, it’s eyes locking onto the teen immediately.

     Throwing out all forms of self preservation, Tony darted forward to shield his son from this flying alien lizard. He stopped short when the creature wrapped its wings around Peter and affectionately nuzzled his cheek. It greeted Grim in a similar fashion which didn’t appear to phase the dog in any way.

     “Hey.” Peter giggled when the reptile bird licked his face with its bright pink tongue. “Dad,” he rested his hand against the creatures leathery skin of its muzzle - just above its fang filled mouth - and the animal leaned into the touch. “This is Boo.”