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Crystal Ball

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“No!” Peter cried out when he saw what Tony was about to do, his suit holding the infinity stones and a look of pure, raw determination on his face. Putting his thrusters on full blast to hurl himself towards Tony, Peter was seconds too late when Tony snapped and the resulting blast sent Peter landing hard on the ground, wincing even as the Rescue suit took most of the blow.

Instantly, Peter was pushing himself back up to scramble towards Tony. “Karen, have FRIDAY run a scan and give me his vitals,” he said, tears already starting to well up as his eyes took in Tony’s form. His whole right side burnt, staring at nothing, unmoving and barely breathing. But he was alive according to FRIDAY. If only he could stay alive for long enough to get help.

“Hey, Tony, hey, look at me, darling, Tony you did it - we did it,” Peter said through his tears, reaching out to cradle the unburnt side of Tony’s face in his hand. “Hey, no, stay with me. Don’t - You have to stay with me, Tony. We’re going to have a baby. Don’t you want to meet them?” Peter whispered to him - he’d found out just days before the battle that he was pregnant but, after nearly losing Tony more than once, Peter wasn’t going to let him go into this fight alone. He was planning on telling him as soon as they got home while celebrating their victory - because victory was the only option here. They couldn’t fail. And they didn’t.

“Pete,” Tony’s lips moved around his name but sound barely came out before his eyes were closing and body going limp.

But FRIDAY still got a reading. He wasn’t gone yet and if Peter had any say in it, Tony was going to survive this.

---

"I'm sorry, I don't um… What?" Peter squeaked into the phone. "There's - there has to be a mistake I'm not - I can't - I've gone through fertility tests they said I'd most likely need to do in-vitro if I wanted to carry a child - that like there's a 2% chance I'd get pregnant without at least being on hormones."

"Well, Mr. Parker, apparently some sort of miracle happened because you are definitely pregnant. I'm sorry if this isn't the news you were hoping for. If you’d like we can set up an appointment to talk about your options at this point in time.”

“Options?” Peter asked before it dawned on him what the phone-nurse was talking about. “Uh no, no that’s… That’s not necessary, thanks,” he said. There was no question or doubts that he was keeping it despite the shock. At least if they all made it through the battle that was no doubt going to come in a few days.

Hanging up the phone, Peter squeezed his eyes shut and took a few deep, measured breaths before he kept working on some last-minute tweaks to the Rescue suit that Tony had made for him long ago as a defense mechanism. Throwing a few extra lines of code into the AI and hooking it’s system up to FRIDAY’s so he could still communicate with Tony and be alerted if anything happened to him in case they got separated. But, since it wasn’t Tony’s creation, there was no way Tony could override it and kick him off the battlefield. Peter just hoped Tony wouldn’t snoop and figure out that Peter had taken FRIDAY off the suit and installed his own AI - Karen, he called it.

---

They had to amputate Tony's arm and no one knew if he would survive the surgery. The risks were laid out in front of Peter in a painfully blunt way as he signed the paperwork and the next four hours dragged by painfully slowly. People trickled in to keep him company - Steve, Rhodey, Pepper and Happy - until the doctor came out to announce that the surgery was a success and Peter could go see Tony.

They warned him that Tony wasn’t out of the woods yet, though. That a lot could still happen. That he’d probably be in and out of consciousness and in a lot of pain despite the morphine drip he was hooked up to.

Peter hesitantly walked into the ICU room. Tony hooked up to several IV drips and monitors. He wasn’t awake yet, but Peter didn’t care. He just pulled up a chair at Tony’s unburnt side and gently wrapped a hand around Tony’s. Waiting for him to wake up and idly watching the IV drip and the monitor that showed Tony’s heartbeat until he felt Tony’s hand twitch and he quickly looked over at his boyfriend.

“Pete…?”

“Hey,” he smiled, tears of relief starting to quickly well up. “You scared me,” he muttered shakily, standing so he could reach out and cup Tony’s cheek.

All he got in response was a pained moan.

“I know, darling. They said you’d probably hurt a lot. The pain will get better as you heal. It might take a while but you’re at the best hospital in New York and they’re pulling out all the stops for you. Only the best surgeons and specialists,” Peter told him softly. “And I’m going to be right here the whole time. I’m not leaving you.”

Tony managed to reach up and grasp Peter's hand again before his eyes fluttered closed and he drifted off.

Peter sighed and curled up in the chair again. He didn't even think to call May, MJ, or Ned until Pepper came in and suggested it. Just too worried about Tony to remember that his family and friends had come back.

Leaning down to gently kiss the back of Tony's hand before he left the room so he could dial May's number.

It took a while to calm her down enough and explain everything properly before breaking the news that Tony was severely injured and that they were at the New York-Presbyterian Hospital. Despite her dislike of Tony and shock of returning after dusting and finding out almost 2 years had passed, she said she'd be there as soon as possible. He didn’t tell her about the pregnancy. He just wasn’t ready to face that yet. It’s not like he could be very far along - maybe 6 or 7 weeks. Hell, he hasn’t even had an ultrasound yet.

He didn’t call Ned or MJ. Not yet. His mental and emotional capacity just wasn’t where it needed to be to go through that explanation again. Just went back to Tony’s room to sit next to Pepper and not thinking twice about laying his head against her shoulder when the woman put an arm around him. She was probably the only other person in the world that knew exactly what he was going through. The only other person that loved and cared for Tony as much as he did. Just… in a different way.

They didn’t talk. Just sat there and watched the monitors and Tony sleeping until a nurse came in to tell Peter that his Aunt was there.

---

“Peter, I need to talk to you. Now,” May said in that parental voice she’s mastered over the years as Peter walked in - coming back from University to stay with May over spring break.

“Um… Okay, yeah, what’d I do?” Peter asked, frowning as he set his backpack and laptop bag down and looked up at his Aunt. His heart skipped a beat when she shoved her phone in his face with some news site pulled up to a picture of himself and Tony, the billionaire’s arm snaked around his waist and both of them grinning ear to ear as they walked out of some fancy restaurant Peter forgot the name of.

“What the fuck is this, Pete? I knew you were seeing someone but… Tony Stark? No. Uh uh. Not happening. I know you’re an adult but he’s old enough to be your father! And I don’t care how many good deeds he’s done as Iron Man, he’s not a good person. He’s going to end up breaking your heart, Pete. I don’t want to see that happen to you,” May stressed, tucking her phone back into her pocket.

Peter let her talk, not looking at her and fighting back against the hot spikes of anger that danced along his veins when she said Tony wasn’t a good person. “If it weren’t for Tony, I’d be dead,” Peter quickly replied, a bite of that anger in his voice before he took in a deep breath and let it out. “And…” he started again, calmer, “Believe it or not we have a lot in common. He’s super smart and - and now I’ve got a guaranteed spot at SI when I graduate. Plus, like, you don’t see it because y’know public appearance and whatnot but… Tony is really sweet. And caring.”

“I still don’t like this, Peter. I guess I can’t force you to stop seeing him but… I don’t think it’s a good idea to be with someone like him,” May said, shaking her head and walking into the kitchen to keep doing dishes.

Peter frowned as he watched her. He had been planning on breaking it to her slowly but apparently nothing could go as planned. The rest of that day was tense. And the next day. And the day after that. May was just starting to calm down about it towards the end of Peter’s break. Still making it clear that she wasn’t happy about the relationship but that she’d support Peter’s choices (also adding that she’d be there when Tony breaks Peter’s heart but Peter decided to ignore that little quip.)

---

“Peter!” May gasped when she saw him, instantly pulling him into a tight hug. “Oh sweetie, you look horrible. You’re not hurt, are you?”

“Just some bruises and scrapes,” Peter muttered, melting into the hug and wrapping his arms around her tightly. “I missed you,” he said, voice cracking slightly as tears quickly welled up and spilled over. “You, Ned, MJ. You were all gone,” he muttered.

“I know. I’m here now, though,” May whispered soothingly, smoothing down Peter’s hair and not letting go of him until he stopped crying and pulled back. “How’s Tony?” she asked.

“Not good,” Peter said, sniffling softly and rubbing the tears from his face. “Um… They had to amputate his arm. A-And the surgery went well but… they said there’s still a lot that could happen. His whole right side is covered in burns.”

“I’m sorry, sweetie. I know how much you care about him,” May said softly. She still didn’t particularly approve but now wasn’t the time to talk about that.

Peter nodded, sighing softly and looking up at May. “I should um… Go back to his room. Just in case he wakes up again,” he said, going with it as May pulled him in for one last hug before he walked back into the ICU.

Chapter Text

"Peter, you really should come home and rest," Steve said gently, settling a hand onto Peter's shoulder. "At least shower and eat something that's not hospital food. That's probably why you've felt so sick between the stress and cafeteria food."

"That's not why I've been feeling sick," Peter muttered dryly. "And I can't just… leave him. What if he wakes up while I'm gone?"

"Then I'll be here. We can take turns. C'mon Pete, sitting here all day and night isn't healthy. Please? You have to take care of yourself, too," Steve said, squeezing Peter's shoulder.

Peter sighed heavily, hating that Steve had a point. But after three days he could tell he was starting to smell and the hospital food did suck and did nothing to combat the morning sickness. "Fine,” he grumbled, slowly uncurling himself and standing from the recliner he had made his home in the past 72 hours. “But I’m coming back right after I shower, change, and eat,” he said pointedly. “And I’m trusting you that you’ll call if anything changes.”

“Of course, Peter. Happy’s waiting for you outside,” Steve said.

“Thanks,” Peter said, leaning over to press a soft kiss against Tony’s cheek before he grabbed the hoodie he had taken off earlier and left.

Upon walking outside, Peter expected the Audi idling near the hospital’s main entrance with Happy inside but he definitely didn’t expect Ned and MJ to be standing outside of the car waiting for him. It took a few seconds for it to fully click in his brain that his two best friends were standing in front of him. Real and solid and alive. It was the first time he’s seen them in two years and logically he knew they were back but there was something different about actually seeing them.

“Are you okay, Peter?” Ned asked gently as the hoodie Peter was holding fell from his lax fingers to the ground.

“You trying to catch flies or…?” MJ teased and Peter realized his mouth was hanging open.

“What? No, I just… You’re… Holy shit, I missed you guys,” Peter gasped, pulling both of them in for a tight hug. Both of them easily adjusting and wrapping their arms around Peter.

“Yeah, we heard the last few years have been… weird,” Ned said, squeezing Peter a little tighter when he sucked in a shaky breath.

“That’s an understatement,” Peter said, trying desperately to stop himself from falling apart again. Between the pregnancy hormones, worrying about Tony, and just the amount of general stress he was dealing with it seemed like anything could get him crying.

MJ pulled back as Peter sniffled and reached up to wipe away the stray tears that had escaped. “Hey, don’t cry. C’mon. Let’s go… do something. We can catch up over lunch - Ned’s treat.”

“What?!”

Peter couldn’t help but laugh and shake his head. “I can take care of lunch but… I need to go shower first I haven’t for like three days,” he admitted.

“Yeah, you do. I love you, Peter, but you stink,” MJ snorted, shrugging at the offended look that Peter gave her.

“I mean, she’s right,” Ned muttered. “We don’t mind waiting for you, though. We can just hang out with Happy,” he added.

Peter rolled his eyes at them before scooping up the hoodie from the ground and opening the back door of the Audi to slide in - both of the other two following closely as Peter greeted Happy.

---

"Look, Ned, please just help me break this code. I hate that I can’t help them and this fucking suit won’t let me do anything. I have no control over it whatsoever,” Peter sighed, sitting in Tony’s lab with Ned and MJ while God-knows-what went on outside. Another potentially world-ending threat. Thanos is what he was called. And apparently he had some crazy idea that wiping out half of all living creatures would somehow make the universe thrive. Peter honestly didn’t get it. All he knew was that Tony and the rest of the Avengers were out there risking their lives in a battle to try and save everyone and Peter was stuck here. Doing nothing.

Not for lack of trying, though. But every suit of armor here had FRIDAY built in - even the Rescue suit Tony had specifically built for Peter. And FRIDAY was programmed to send the suit into defense mode if Peter was the one in it. Which meant Peter had no control over them and the AI would be in charge - detecting threats and taking them out while getting Peter to safety as fast as possible.

“That’s probably a good thing,” Ned said hesitantly. “I mean, what the Avengers do is like… really dangerous isn’t it? And do you even know how to use one of these things?”

“Of course I do,” Peter sighed heavily. He at least had a good idea of how to from watching Tony and the few times he was in the Rescue suit.

“I agree with Ned. Seems dangerous and stupid,” MJ commented while she wandered around and idly looked at the various tools and half-finished projects that were strewn about. “Anyways, boyfriend or not, do you really want to go behind Tony Stark’s back and piss off Iron Man himself?”

Peter rolled his eyes at her. “It’ll be fine. Once Tony knows I can hold my own in a fight he-” Peter stopped mid-sentence, jaw dropping and eyes going wide as he watched Ned turn to dust in front of him.

Distantly, he heard MJ’s panicked shout before it was abruptly cut off and Peter didn’t even have to look to know that she was gone, too and suddenly Peter felt like he was going to vomit.

Thanos won.

---

“Wait, wait, wait you live here now? Like… full-time?” Ned asked incredulously as Happy pulled up to the Avengers base.

“Yeah,” Peter said, “Um… May also… y’know. So… I didn’t really have anywhere else to go,” he shrugged as they all piled out of the car. “Happy actually was the one that found me and suggested it, though.”

“Well, I couldn’t have just let you waste away on the street. Bossman definitely wouldn’t have been thrilled about that when he came back,” Happy chirped in as he walked inside with them. “And, y’know, you’re a good kid. Kind’ve grown on all of us here,” he added, reaching out to ruffle Peter’s hair.

“Yeah, right. Anyway, don’t break anything. I’m gonna go get clean and change,” Peter said before hurrying off to his and Tony’s room there - ignoring MJ’s lamenting about how he was ‘no fun’.

He paused just inside the door as a feeling he couldn’t quite describe washed over him.

Just being here, without Tony. Not knowing when Tony might be back. If he was going to be.

It was a familiar, yet still horrifyingly terrible feeling. The room was just way too big for him to be there by himself. During the weeks between Thanos snapping and when Tony finally managed to get back from whatever faraway planet he’d been on Peter barely slept. And when he did, it wasn’t in Tony’s bed - their bed. It was in the guest room. Or on the couch. Or the pull-out in Tony’s lab. The bed was just too big and too cold without Tony lying there next to him.

Taking in a deep breath, Peter pushed forward and rifled around until he found a pair of jeans and fished out one of Tony’s old worn-in T-shirts that he liked to wear. They were faded, but soft and smelled like Tony. He scrubbed himself clean quickly and, after drying off, pulled on the jeans. It was way more difficult than it should have been to button them and Peter debated about digging for a looser pair but he swore these fit just a week ago.

There was no way he was showing yet.

Which, he guessed he technically wasn’t, but Peter could see the tiniest curve of his stomach when he stared at himself in the mirror. No one else would have noticed except maybe Tony. And apparently his pants.

Peter ditched those jeans for a more worn-in pair that was easier to get on before he went to find his friends again. He felt a lot better after a shower. More human now that he wasn’t covered in a fine layer of sweat and dirt and blood from the fight.

They ended up ordering in - Peter honestly wasn’t sure how well he’d fare in a publicly social situation. Especially if someone spotted him and recognized him as Tony’s boyfriend since it’s been plastered over almost every tabloid and several newspapers and news stations for three and a half years. He was almost certain he’d burst into tears if someone started asking him a bunch of questions about Tony and how he was doing right now.

Anyways, then Peter could keep a better eye on his phone and he wouldn’t have to worry about trying to hear a notification or ring over the noise of a restaurant if Steve had to get ahold of him.

Which, Steve didn’t call, but Peter did get a call from the midwife’s office that he’d been referred to. He sent it to voicemail - he would call back later to schedule an appointment - but not before MJ got a glimpse of the caller ID.

“Uh… Peter?” she started after swallowing down the mouthful of lo mein she was chewing on, “Why’s a midwife clinic calling you?”

Peter hesitated as both his friends turned to stare at him. At least Happy had disappeared to a different room. “I um… Look, guys, no one knows and I don’t want to tell anyone else right now, okay? So please, please, please don’t say anything to anyone? Including May. Especially May. I just found out like a week ago but… uh… I’m pregnant.”

“What? Holy shit, Peter. That’s awesome, dude,” Ned gasped. “You never even told us you could carry.”

“I didn’t know until um… about a year ago? Tony and I started talking about wanting to have kids after undoing the snap and getting married. So I did some testing. They said I could carry but we’d need to go through like a whole hormone regime and probably do in-vitro because I guess I just wasn’t… ovulating. I don’t know. We really just wanted to know if it was possible, we weren’t planning on having any kids for a little while so I didn’t pay too much attention,” Peter rambled. “But, then, uh the nurse I talked to called it a ‘miracle’. I’m not sure I’d go that far but… something happened because I’m pregnant and I’ve definitely not been on hormones.”

“Does Tony know?” MJ asked gently after Peter finally stopped talking.

Taking in a deep breath, Peter shrugged. “I-I don’t think so? I um… I told him right after he snapped but I think he was too out of it to remember. He hasn’t said anything or asked about it. If he remembered I think he would’ve said something last time he woke up,” Peter said. Tony had been lucid enough to ask Peter if he’s seen his Aunt or friends yet and if everyone else was okay. So he remembered that they’d brought everyone back.

“You know what you could do - you could get like a ‘get well soon’ card and tape an ultrasound picture inside!” Ned suggested. “That would be so cute. Don’t you think, MJ?”

“Cute enough to make me want to puke. And super cheesy… But you guys are both dorks so I think Tony would like that,” MJ said.

Peter couldn’t help but smile at his friend’s suggestions. “Yeah, I have to schedule and have the ultrasound first, though,” he chuckled.

“Want us to come with you? I mean - since you don’t want anyone else to know yet. I have nothing going on the next couple days,” MJ offered, looking over at Ned.

“Same. Just say the word and we’ll be there,” Ned confirmed, reaching out to pat Peter on the shoulder.

“You guys are the best. I’ll call that office back and make an appointment and um… I’ll see if I can just get it done at the same hospital Tony’s staying at,” Peter said. It was a huge hospital campus and he knew there was a separate outpatient radiology department that did X-rays, CAT scans, and ultrasounds on the same campus.

Peter didn’t waste any more time calling the midwife’s office back. At first, they said they wouldn’t be able to do the ultrasound on the hospital’s campus until Peter casually mentioned that his boyfriend - Tony Stark - was in that hospital and Peter didn’t want to be far away. Then suddenly everything changed and the lady he was talking to quickly said, “No problem at all, Mr. Parker. How does Thursday at 11AM sound?”

“Thursday at 11?” Peter repeated, looking between Ned and MJ to make sure they heard and nodded their approval before he confirmed with the receptionist and hung up.

Chapter Text

”D’you want kids?”

Peter paused, his fork loaded up with a bite of syrupy pancakes halfway to his mouth when Tony asked the question. “Um… I guess?” Peter answered before shoving the food into his mouth to continue eating.

“Hmm,” Tony hummed as he poured himself another cup of coffee and turned to stare over at his boyfriend, leaning against the kitchen counter. “I do,” he said. “When you’re ready. After we get your Aunt and friends back. After we get married.”

Peter couldn’t help but wince slightly at that, chewing on his lip and idly stabbing at the remainder of his breakfast. “Tony, we don’t even know if that can happen. It’s all… speculation. We can’t know if-”

“No, baby, I’m getting your family back. No ‘if’s about it, I’m going to find a way,” Tony said firmly.

Frowning, Peter shook his head and stood up to scrape his plate off into the trash and go wash it. “I don’t want you to,” he said shortly, frustration and fear welling up quickly inside of him because they’ve had this conversation before.

“Pete, you don’t smile anymore. Not really. I know you don’t think it’s possible but Scott’s got a good idea going and, with some tweaks, I think we can do it,” Tony said.

“You mean his whole ‘Back to the Future’ plan? You said it yourself that was stupid - and dangerous,” Peter rolled his eyes at him.

“I mean... Like I said, with some tweaking-”

“I said I don’t want you to,” Peter repeated with a little more force, closing his eyes and taking in a deep, shaky breath before slowly letting it out.

“Why?”

That one little word was what broke Peter, tossing his plate apparently a little too hard into the sink because he could hear it shattering as he spun around to face Tony. “Because I can’t lose you, too!” he shouted, chest heaving and tears quickly welling up. “I already almost have so - so many times, Tony. Y-You don’t get it. You don’t… You were gone for two months after everyone turned to dust! I thought you were gone for good, too. And - And before that there was that whole Sokovia thing and - fuck, Tony, I never know if you’re going to come back to me or not a-and I’ve already lost literally every other single person on this planet that I considered family I c-can’t… p-please, Tony, d-don’t j-just… just d-d-don’t,” Peter stuttered, very quickly turning into a hysterical, blubbering mess.

It was a wonder how he managed not to collapse before Tony’s arms wrapped around him and he clung tightly onto those strong shoulders as sobs wracked his whole body. Tony scooped him up and Peter was only vaguely aware of the sweet nothings being whispered into his ear as he was carried to the living room - ugly crying the whole way - and then settled into Tony’s lap once he was sitting on the couch.

Peter cried so hard it hurt but it wasn’t the first time that’s happened. In fact, it happened a lot during the two months before Tony came back.

This time he had Tony to help hold him together, though. Pressing kisses against the top of his head and rubbing his hands up and down Peter’s arms and back until the sobs finally quieted and, eventually, stopped.

“I’m not going anywhere, love,” Tony reassured him softly, shifting Peter slightly so he could reach out and grab the box of tissues to hand to Peter. “If you really, truly, don’t want me to do this… I won’t. All I want is to make you happy, baby boy.”

Peter didn’t say anything yet, using a few tissues to wipe away the tears and blow his nose. “I-I don’t. I don’t want you to. I can’t take that chance,” he sniffled, laying his cheek against Tony’s shoulder. “I want to marry you. A-and have kids with you. I want to have a family with you. Not - Not right now. But… in a few years? Point is I can’t do that if you’re not around.”

“I’ll be here, sweetheart, I promise,” Tony said, carding a hand through Peter’s messy hair.

---

The nurses at the hospital’s ICU were absolutely wonderful. Peter couldn’t thank them enough for their continuous care not only of Tony, but of himself as well. They always made sure he had fresh blankets and pillows at night and always offered drinks - tea, hot chocolate, coffee, water - and sometimes would bring in a pitcher of water or a pot of coffee to leave there in case he wanted some later. They also made sure the room was fully stocked with snacks at all times.

However, Peter was starting to wonder if maybe a few of them had started to catch on to his little secret with how much they’ve begun fussing over him recently. Also the sudden switch from normal to decaffeinated coffee left for him. It probably wasn’t too hard to figure out for someone in the medical field between his frequent bathroom trips in the early hours of the day, the fact that he’s worn nothing except sweaters and leggings the past four days, and how he would subconsciously find one of his hands resting on his stomach almost constantly.

And, maybe, Peter had a habit of talking in his sleep.

It was really only a matter of time before everyone else started catching on, too and Peter should have known that Pepper would figure it out before long. She was crazy observant and they’ve been spending a lot of time together at the hospital.

‘Before long’ happened to be the exact second that Peter stepped back into Tony’s room after the ultrasound. Pictures stuffed deep into his laptop bag and clutching a Chai he got from the cafe downstairs in his hand that he choked on when Pepper spoke.

“So when are you planning on telling me?”

“What?” Peter coughed, looking over to see Tony still asleep. “I-I don’t… Um…”

“Seriously, kid? You think I wouldn’t notice the morning sickness, how you suddenly stopped drinking coffee, and you willingly left earlier for a um… ‘doctor’s appointment’. I’m not stupid. Or blind. I know,” she said gently. “I won’t tell anyone else but please at least be honest with me.”

Staring wide-eyed at her, Peter knew he was caught. He couldn’t lie. He was horrible at lying. “I-I um… D’you wanna see the ultrasound pictures?” he asked instead in a small, quiet voice.

Pepper’s face broke into a smile and she nodded. “Of course.”

Peter put down his tea before digging through his laptop bag to find the printouts. He handed them over to Pepper and sat down next to her. “Found out I’m like… 10 weeks already,” he said, a little sheepishly because he had definitely not expected that. Then again, he had been feeling weird - sick, tired, sore - for a while before he actually went to get checked out. Still. Two and a half months. No wonder his jeans were starting to get too tight to wear. “That’s it’s head there and if you look close you can even start to see the baby’s hands and feet here and… here.”

“Pete…?”

The worried, pain-filled voice coming from the bed had Peter instantly rushing over to Tony. It was rather endearing, every time he woke up it was Peter’s name on his lips. But that’s also why Peter was so hesitant to leave. He never wanted to be gone when Tony needed him.

“I’m right here, darling,” Peter soothed, taking Tony’s hand in both of his. “How’re you feeling? Any better?”

“Well… Now that you’re here,” Tony muttered, voice hoarse and quiet but he still managed half a smile and Peter’s heart swelled.

How Tony could be so cheesy and sweet right now was beyond Peter but it made Peter love him even more than he already did. “God, I love you,” he muttered, leaning down to kiss Tony softly.

“Mm, y’know I usually go by ‘Tony’ but… whatever suits you,” Tony joked, earning an eye roll from Peter. “I love you, too, babe,” he whispered, squeezing Peter’s hand.

“You should rest, honey,” Peter said, “You have a lot of healing to do. Gotta grow that arm back,” he teased, earning another little smile from Tony.

“I don’t think that’s how it works,” Tony commented, “Maybe you should go back to that human biology class you skipped in college.”

Peter couldn’t help a soft laugh, bringing Tony’s hand up so he could kiss against the back of his hand.

“So…” Tony started after a moment. “Who’s having a baby?” he asked and Peter’s stomach lurched.

So much for telling Tony in a cutesy, cheesy way. Peter was starting to think he should just make an official announcement since everyone was figuring it out whether he wanted them to or not.

Peter glanced over his shoulder towards Pepper who shrugged unhelpfully at him.

“We are,” he muttered after another moment of silence, looking back at Tony to watch his reaction.

“What… How?”

“Maybe you should come with me to that biology class,” Peter couldn’t help but joke.

“You’re serious?” Tony asked, staring up at Peter. “You’re… You’re really pregnant?”

“Yeah, Tony,” Peter said softly, reaching out to get the ultrasound pictures from Pepper. “This is our baby,” he said. “I was um… gonna get you like a card and put this picture in it to tell you,” he admitted. “I’ll get like a frame or something to put it in later and we can keep it on this little table.”

“Yeah,” Tony agreed. “Weren’t we supposed to get married first? What happened to that?”

“We decided the chances of pregnancy were low enough and our dislike of condoms was high enough to take the chance,” Peter chuckled. “And I still want to marry you. As soon as you’re physically able to stand at the altar. Now please, Tony, rest.”

“Yeah,” Tony agreed again - already struggling to stay awake between the various medications he was on and the pain.

---

”I can’t wait to have a family with you,” Tony muttered, spooning up close behind Peter and slipping a hand under Peter’s shirt to press against his stomach. “Baby, you have no idea how much it means to me that you’re willing to carry our children.”

Peter couldn’t help but smile, settling a hand on top of Tony’s. “‘Course. Now that I know I’m able to I wouldn’t want it any other way,” he said, sighing contentedly when Tony pressed a few kisses along his shoulder and neck.

Finally, after over a year, Peter was just starting to come to terms with everything and feel like he might be ready to move on. The pain and grief was still there, but not as prevalent and not as intense. He felt like he could actually look forward to starting a family with Tony without the guilt and feeling that he was abandoning his Aunt and friends.

“We should celebrate,” Tony suggested, hand sliding up to Peter’s chest as he nipped at the younger man’s neck.

Peter couldn’t stop the little whine that came from him, tilting his head and rolling his hips back against Tony’s. “You just wanna fuck me,” he teased.

“Hell yeah, I do,” Tony chuckled, already reaching to their bedside table for the lube and condoms.

Peter rolled onto his back, watching Tony and chewing on his lip for a minute. “Do we need the condoms anymore…?” he asked before he could help himself.

Tony hesitated, looking between Peter and the foil packet he had in his hand. “I mean… Doc said there’s still a chance.”

“Yeah but… if it happens then… would it really be that bad?” Peter asked.

“No,” Tony said slowly. “You’re sure…? I don’t want you to regret this.”

“I won’t,” Peter promised, taking the condom from Tony and tossing it off to the side - not even caring where it went - before he pulled Tony down into a hard kiss.

Chapter Text

Peter couldn’t lie, he was hoping he’d get pregnant when they ditched the condoms. Realistically he knew that probably wasn’t going to happen but it didn’t stop him from hoping. It also didn’t stop him from jumping Tony any chance he got.

Tony didn’t seem bothered by the sudden increase in their sex life. Especially when Peter started walking around in nothing but big T-shirts or oversized sweaters and panties. Which… the panties were new. He’d only seen Peter wear them on special occasions when he wanted to really work Tony up but now he was regularly wearing them. Ones he’d bought before and some new ones that Tony didn’t recognize.

Today, he was wearing a new pair that caught Tony’s eye as Peter leaned across the kitchen counter to grab… something. Tony didn’t even know what because his eyes were trained on the fucking Captain America shield printed on the ass of the panties Peter was wearing underneath the oversized sweater he had on. “Are you fucking kidding me?” Tony couldn’t help but grumble under his breath, moving without hardly realizing it until he was grasping Peter’s hips tightly and pinning him to the counter. “Wanna explain these?” he growled, snapping the band of the offending panties and relishing in the gasp Peter let out.

“U-Um… they were out of Iron Man…?” Peter squeaked.

“Mmhmm, I’m sure they were.” Tony didn’t hesitate at all to rip the panties off of Peter. The fabric tearing loudly but easily. Obviously they were a cheap pair and Tony had an idea Peter was hoping for that reaction.

By the breathless moan that Peter let out, Tony was right.

“Fuck, baby boy, if I had any lube around I’d finger you open and fuck you right here over this counter. Make you forget Cap even exists,” he growled, sliding his hands up Peter’s sides under the sweater to tweak at his nipples. He gasped softly when Peter pushed his hips back and rolled them, effectively grinding his ass against the crotch of Tony’s sweats.

“‘M already all prepped and lubed. Shouldn’t need more. Just fuck me,” Peter said breathlessly, whining softly when Tony pinched one of his nipples hard.

“Jesus christ, Pete. If I knew any better I’d think you were trying to get me to knock you up,” Tony said and he didn’t miss the way that Peter’s breath hitched when he said that.

Huh.

“Tony, please, just… C’mon,” he whined, grinding back against Tony again and he could feel him start to get hard but his movements were stopped when Tony leaned down over him, effectively pinning him to the counter with very little room left for movement.

“Hold on, sweetheart, are you… Is that what this is?” Tony asked, kissing and nipping at Peter’s shoulder. “Are you trying to get pregnant?”

“I-I um… No?” Peter squeaked, face flushing red even as his cock twitched at Tony’s words and the way that he was biting at his shoulder. No doubt leaving some hickies while he was at it.

“Not sure if I believe that, baby boy,” Tony said, rolling his hips against Peter’s before he straightened up and grabbed a handful of Peter’s ass. And okay, even if he wanted to he wouldn’t have been able to stop the painfully aroused noise he made - right along with Peter’s own desperate moan - when he was, far too easily, able to press a thumb into his wet hole. Then again, Peter said he’d prepped himself already.

“Maybe you shouldn’t,” Peter admitted.

“Fuck,” Tony couldn’t help but grunt. “That is… way hotter than it should be,” he muttered - more to himself than Peter - and didn’t waste any more time shoving his sweatpants down and slowly pushing inside of Peter.

It was more of a stretch than normal and burned a little but Peter loved every second of it. Especially when Tony started talking again.

“Shoulda told me before, baby. Shit, I can’t wait until you’re all round and glowing,” Tony said between ragged breaths, squeezing a hand between Peter and the counter so he could press it against Peter’s flat stomach as he slowly pulled out and pushed back in. “God, I can just imagine how you’ll look when you start to show,” he continued, starting up a slow pace and grinding deep inside of Peter. “Bet you’ll get all sensitive and needy, too. More than you already are. Fuck, Pete, you-”

Tony was cut off by Peter letting out a high pitched moan of his name, shaking and clenching around him. It took Tony’s brain a few seconds to catch up and realize that Peter just fucking came. “Don’t stop,” he whined, rolling his hips and whimpering. “Want you to cum inside me.”

“You don’t have to ask me twice,” Tony said, gripping onto Peter’s hips.

---

Now that Tony knew, the news spread quickly. Soon almost everyone knew - except May. But the rest of the team did. And it was pretty entertaining to watch a bunch of huge, muscular men coo and aww over an ultrasound picture. Happy nearly started bawling and there was a fight over who would be the god-parents which was very quickly put to an end when Peter and Tony agreed that Pepper would be the baby’s god-mother.

Tony was doing well, too. They were starting to talk about moving him to a normal room but the chance of infection was still uncomfortably high because of the burns. But, so far, he was healing well and more conscious throughout the day.

All in all, things were looking up.

Of course, the time came when Peter had to tell May and that had to be the most nerve-wracking moment of his life.

May had come by to take him to lunch since they haven’t been able to talk much since everything happened and, after ensuring that Rhodey would stay with Tony and had his phone number, he left to meet May in the waiting room.

“Hey,” Peter greeted as May pulled him into a tight hug.

“Hey, Pete. I’m not saying I don’t like your outfit but… don’t you want to change before we go out?” she asked teasingly, pulling back to look him up and down.

Peter rolled his eyes. He was wearing what had quickly become his usual lately - black leggings and an oversized knit sweater. Which, yeah, maybe for a guy it was a little different but none of Peter’s jeans fit anymore. At least not comfortably. “I gotta be comfy when I spend most of my time at the hospital,” he said. “It’s fine. Unless you’re embarrassed of me,” Peter said with a fake pout.

“No, of course not,” May chuckled. “C’mon, let’s go eat. I’m sure you’re dying for something that’s not hospital food."

“Yeah,” Peter said, walking out with May and trying to build up the courage he’d need to tell her about the pregnancy.

They ended up at a Panera, ordering food and finding a place to sit. And, heart pounding out of his chest, Peter blurted it out before anything could interrupt.

“I’m pregnant.”

“What?” May choked out, eyes going wide at him. “I-I don’t think I heard that right. You um… what?”

Peter took in a deep breath. “I am pregnant,” he said, slower this time but was met with silence and, of course, had a nagging urge to fill that silence. “A lot has changed in the past two years a-and um… Tony and I have been living together - you knew that part. But we also planned on getting married - still do - and uh… decided we wanted a kid so I went to a specialist for some testing and we found out that I could carry - they said I’d need hormone treatment and maybe in-vitro so I guess we just stopped being careful about it. We wanted to get married first but it wasn’t completely unplanned and definitely not unwanted. And uh…” Peter trailed off, realizing he was rambling. “I have ultrasound pictures… If-if you wanna see?” Peter offered timidly.

“That’s um… Pete, that’s a lot of - of information to take in right now. Uh… I don’t know what to say,” May muttered.

“Maybe… congratulations? That - that you’re happy for us?” Peter offered, though he wasn’t sure if that would be true.

“Pete, honey, you know how I feel about you and Tony. I mean, I guess you’ve been together for - we were gone for two so... four years now but that doesn’t change the fact that he’s so much older than you. I just - Just give me a few days to uh… come to terms with everything. It’s hard to believe that two years have passed by and I can’t help but still think you’re barely 20, supposed to be living with me, and still in college,” May sighed, shaking her head. “Of course if you’re happy then… so am I. And… As much as I hate saying it, I suppose I owe Tony a big thanks.”

Well, it could’ve gone worse so Peter just forced a small smile and nodded. “Yeah. I am happy.”

---

”Tony? Darling?” Peter called out as he walked into the lab, half-asleep after waking up at 2 in the morning to an empty bed. “What’re you doing?” he asked once he found Tony. Barely even paying attention to the digital model displayed in front of him.

“I um… I had an idea. A thought. that’s all. Don’t worry about it, I’ll come back to bed soon,” Tony said, though he was still staring at the model.

“Idea for what…?” Peter asked. He came around to look at what Tony was seeing and he was suddenly wide awake, feeling his heart plummeting just as quickly as anger rose when he saw that Tony was trying to figure out fucking time travel despite their earlier conversations - and fights - over it. “Tony,” he said lowly, a warning and a plea.

“Babe, I just - I just wanted to know if it was possible, okay? Which… it’s not. It’s not. I know now that it’s not. It wouldn’t even be… I wasn’t going to do anything with it - I promise. I was just curious,” Tony said quickly, turning around in his chair and taking both of Peter’s hands.

“Tony,” Peter groaned, rolling his eyes at him. “You’re never going to let it go, are you?” he asked in a pained voice, looking over Tony’s head at the model. Blinking a few times, Peter tilted his head at it. Almost. But not quite. Though, Peter could see where Tony had gone wrong. Sighing heavily, he pulled a chair over and sat next to Tony.

“Hey, sweetheart, let’s just… we can go to bed. I’m sorry, it was stupid - I should’ve known it wouldn’t work and even if it did I-” Tony hesitated as Peter toyed with the model with a cold, calculating look on his face. “Baby-”

“FRIDAY, run it, please,” Peter said softly, chewing on his lip as the changes loaded.

“Holy shit,” Tony gasped when FRIDAY announced a successful run. “Pete, you… you did it.”

“There’s your fucking time travel. Happy now?” Peter scoffed as he got back up. “Y’know what? You don’t have to come to bed. I don’t care. Do what you want - you will anyways,” he said sourly as he left, ignoring Tony’s sorries and pleas.

Even as he slammed doors and buried himself under blankets, anger wasn’t at the forefront of Peter’s mind. No. It was doubt and guilt and a million other feelings. Including a small glimmer of hope.

They could, realistically, do it.

Just knowing that made everything different. What sort of person would Peter be - having the means to bring back everyone that had dusted and deciding not to? Even worse, convincing other people not to.

He’d be no better than Thanos.

Chapter Text

In just a week, Peter’s stomach went from being just barely curved to having a more defined bump. Still not noticeable under the sweaters he wore unless he sat a certain way but he could see the change if he wasn’t wearing a shirt and he was sure it would show if he wore anything more fitted.

“Didn’t think I’d start showing so soon, but I guess I am like… almost three months along - I keep forgetting that,” Peter chuckled, sweater held up by his chest so Tony could see the curve of his stomach. Half kneeling on the bed and smiling as Tony reached out to press his hand against the bump.

“Why do you keep hiding under those sweaters?” Tony asked, rubbing circles on Peter’s skin with his thumb. “Everyone knows now.”

Peter shrugged. “They’re comfy,” he said, “And the hospital’s always cold.”

“Hmm, I guess you have a point,” Tony sighed, “Still, means I don’t get to enjoy your cute little belly as much since I’m trapped here.”

“You are here for a very good reason, darling,” Peter said, resting a hand over Tony’s on his stomach. “Maybe if you didn’t pull such a stupid stunt you’d be able to enjoy it more.”

“That stupid stunt made sure we didn’t all turn to dust,” Tony quipped back.

“Peter, Mr. Stark, sorry to interrupt I just need to get a read on some vitals,” a nurse said, making Peter jump slightly and let go of his sweater - letting it fall back over his stomach.

“Sorry,” Peter muttered, face turning red as he scrambled out of the way and let her do her job. She was one of the really nice ones that fussed over Peter and made sure he was comfortable and had water and snacks.

“It’s okay. The first kid is a really exciting thing. And hey, if you need anything at all just let us know. I'll bring a pitcher of water down once I'm done here,” she told him as she jotted a few things down but paused and frowned after taking Tony’s temperature. “Got a little fever going there, we’ll want to keep an eye on it.”

Peter just idly watched, thanking her as she left. She didn’t seem too worried about the fever so Peter decided he shouldn’t panic yet, either.

"Hey, Pete why don't you have Happy pick you and your friends up. Have lunch. Go shopping. Grab some maternity clothes - you'll need them soon," Tony suggested. "Just swing by home and grab one of my cards first."

"I don't need your money. Y'know I've got my own money that I can use," Peter huffed, crossing his arms over his chest and sending a teasing pout towards Tony.

"Yeah but you’re not going to," Tony stated, laughing when Peter rolled his eyes.

"Maybe. You don’t know that,” Peter scoffed, holding the pout for a few seconds before sighing heavily and shrugging. “Look, people are nicer to me when I have a platinum card that has your name on it, okay?"

"Yeah, I bet they are," Tony said. “So, like I said, grab my card and go get yourself some nice new clothes. Maybe something sexy for when I come home,” Tony teased with a wink - earning himself another eye roll from Peter.

---

Peter was absolutely vibrating with excitement as he spotted Ned and MJ at the spot they’d usually meet up at to study. “Holy shit guys, you’re never going to believe what happened to me yesterday,” he said, sitting down and grinning at his friends. Ned and MJ just staring wide-eyed at him. No doubt mortified by his current state - stitches along his cheek, arm in a sling, and absolutely covered in cuts and bruises… But none of that really mattered to him right now.

“Shit, dude, are you okay?” Ned gasped.

“Oh my God, Peter, what happened?” MJ asked, her response overlapping Ned’s.

“What? Oh, yeah um… Aliens? I don’t really know. A building almost fell on me. Don’t worry about it - that’s not what I’m talking about an-”

“Aliens? What the fuck, Peter? How are you not talking about that?” MJ scoffed incredulously.

“No, no, wait, a building almost fell on you? Peter what - Hold on, I just - let me get this straight. You saw aliens and almost got killed by a falling building, but that’s not important?” Ned asked, more confused than he’s ever been before.

“Guys, you’re not listening to me. Just - let me talk, okay? Because something way better happened than nearly being killed by weird aliens and falling buildings,” Peter told them, unfazed by how MJ and Ned shared a worried look and about to start talking again when Ned spoke up.

“Did you… Peter, did you hit your head when that building fell or…? You’re not making any sense,” Ned asked slowly.

“No! Just - shut up for a minute, okay? Look, so, I was just kinda walking around and whatever. I guess I missed the memo that the Avengers would be fighting aliens on Tuesday but like then all of a sudden this huge thing crashed into one of those like big apartment buildings that was like… right in front of me. And, like, I totally thought I was going to die. But then Iron Man fucking just like… grabbed me. Like literally grabbed my arm and flew me away from the falling bricks. It was seriously the craziest fucking thing ever. But like… that wasn’t all, either. I guess I got hit by some of the debris so I was bleeding a lot and he said he wanted to make sure I was okay, right? So after they took out the aliens he came back and we started talking while waiting for the paramedics and um…” Peter paused, having to take a moment to breathe after spitting everything else out in one long breath before he started again - slower, this time. “He asked me out. Like… on a date,” Peter finished, breathless and sounding like he hardly believed it himself. Which, honestly? He couldn’t.

The twin blank stares he was getting didn’t help.

“Guys, did you not hear me? Tony Stark asked me out. Iron Man asked me out. I might get to fuck Iron Man. Which, by the way, Tony Stark is way hotter in person. Just in case you were wondering.”

“No… I, I really wasn’t wondering,” MJ said, taking in a deep breath. “You... Peter, are you sure you didn’t hit your head? That kind of sounds like some sort of weird wet dream fantasy of yours that I think you’ve told me about before. Pretty sure you might’ve hallucinated all that.”

“Well if you don’t believe me I’ll just have to get a picture with him when we have our date Saturday night,” Peter scoffed. “He’s taking me out to… well, I’m really not sure where. He said he’d pick me up at 7. So. We’ll see.”

“Right,” Ned said slowly. “So… aside from the obvious concussion and hallucinations, you’re okay?”

Peter screwed his eyes shut, sucking in another deep breath to try and suppress the urge to hit Ned right upside the head. “I’m not - Oh my God. Fine. Don’t believe me,” he grumbled, grabbing his laptop bag and standing back up.

“Where are you going?” Ned asked.

“Somewhere else. Around people that don’t think I’m hallucinating and going crazy,” Peter snorted.

“Right. Well. We’ll be here. Bye!” MJ called out as Peter sulked away.

---

“Are you okay?” Peter asked softly, sitting on the edge of Tony’s bed. Dressed in a pair of maternity jeans he got and, per Tony’s request, a more fitted sweater that was still warm and stretchy but would show off the curve of his stomach which definitely got Tony’s approval.

“Hm?” Tony muttered, focusing his eyes back on Peter. “Yeah, yeah ‘m fine. I um… What were you saying? I just… lost focus.”

“If you’re tired I can stop talking and let you rest,” Peter offered, reaching up to smooth back Tony’s hair and frowning at how warm he felt. “Think you still have a fever,” Peter said, leaning down to kiss Tony softly.

“No, no it’s… I’m fine,” he muttered after returning the kiss, though Peter could tell he was struggling to stay awake. “Jus’ kinda tired.”

“Yeah, so you should rest,” Peter chuckled, taking Tony’s hand. “I’ll be right here when you wake up, darling. You know that,” he said, watching fondly as Tony quickly lost his struggle to stay awake and dozed off.

After a few minutes, Peter stood from the bed to change back into his earlier, much comfier outfit, and settle into the recliner. He pulled out his phone just to send out a general text to everyone about making sure Tony rested and had breaks between visitors so he wouldn’t try and force himself to stay up if his body needed rest.

Tony slept the rest of the day except when he was woken up to take medication and for the nurses to change the bandages on his burns. Which apparently a few of them weren’t looking great - the nurses assured Peter it would be okay, though, when he worried about it. That they’d talk about upping the antibiotic and would keep a close eye on it.

That didn’t help Peter’s worrying, though. First the fever and now this. As well as Tony’s been doing, a bad infection could still be deadly and Peter found himself having a much harder time than usual falling asleep. He’d gotten used to sleeping in the recliner by now. The heated blankets the nurses brought in always helped and it wasn’t too bad when it was fully reclined but his worried thoughts kept him up.

Which, when Tony woke up whining in pain and muttering Peter’s name in the middle of the night, he was glad he wasn’t sleeping very hard.

“Hey, Tony, I’m right here,” he said softly as he got up to soothe him, wincing a little at how sweaty and pale Tony was. “Darling, hey, talk to me. What’s going on?” he cooed, cupping Tony’s cheek gently.

“Pete?” Tony muttered, voice filled with pain as he opened his eyes to stare up at him, unable to hold back a soft moan as the bed shifted when Peter sat on it.

“Are you okay? Did the morphine drip stop working again?” Peter asked softly, looking over to see the IV still dripping and connected.

“No. No, I’m fine, Pete, sorry I woke you up,” Tony said - but his voice was tight with pain and, Peter now noticed, he was shaking.

“Tony,” Peter sighed heavily. “I’m going to go get a nurse. You’re burning up,” he said before he got up to find someone.

Peter managed to find one of the nurses he recognized from the night staff to come check Tony out. Curious and worried, Peter watched as she carefully removed some of the dressings to check on the wounds and Peter couldn’t help but wince and press a hand over his mouth to suppress a gag when one of the deeper burns looked discolored and was oozing pus.

How the nurses could be face to face with something like that and not vomit was beyond Peter because he had to quickly move around to Tony’s good side and take a few deep breaths to keep his dinner down. Then again, the morning sickness hadn’t completely gone away yet so maybe he’d do better if he wasn’t pregnant.

Instead, she hummed softly and shook her head. “Let’s get this cleaned up and I’ll get our on-call doctor in here to look at it,” she said, gently removing the rest of the gauze to throw away before changing out gloves and gathering what she’d need to clean the wound.

Peter just stayed by Tony, holding his hand and trying to distract him from what the nurse was doing because it definitely didn’t look like it would feel great and by Tony’s wincing and pained grunts, he was right. So he just babbled about his shopping trip and talked about how they could find out if the baby was a boy or a girl with the next ultrasound in a few weeks until the nurse was done.

It ended up being a long night. They hung up another bag of antibiotics - apparently, a heavier one - and with it gave Tony an anti-nausea but they couldn’t increase the pain medication anymore. Which meant Tony was miserable for the rest of the night. Unfortunately, the antibiotics didn’t seem to be doing anything, either. Watching how quickly Tony went from fully lucid and awake most of the time to slurring his words and barely being able to keep his eyes open for more than a few seconds at a time was terrifying for Peter and he wouldn’t have been able to sleep even if he tried.

It was like watching him snap but in slow motion.

Chapter Text

Honestly, Peter was amazed by how well he managed to keep himself together in the early hours of the morning. Settled onto the edge of Tony’s bed, brushing his hair back and just talking softly to him. No matter if he was semi-conscious or completely unresponsive. It had to be some sort of miracle that his voice never shook or cracked even as silent tears spilled over his cheeks.

All of that went out the window when Happy walked in.

“Hey, kid, did you still want to - Oh,” Happy paused, halfway through the doorway. Peter sniffling softly and not looking at Happy at first.

“H-He um… T-There’s an infection s-so -” Peter’s sentence was interrupted by a soft, hiccuped sob that had him pressing the sleeve of the big sweater over his mouth to try and suppress more embarrassing noises like that from happening.

Not that it mattered when Happy came around to rub a hand soothingly between his shoulder blades. It was like some switch clicking and everything came crashing down on Peter again as the realization hit him like a punch to the gut -

Tony could still die.

He’d been doing so well. Peter forgot that there was still such a big possibility of things going south like this.

Peter wasn’t sure how he ended up clinging so tightly onto the suit Happy wore, face buried against his chest and hiccuping painfully.

“He’ll be okay, Pete. You gotta believe that,” Happy said. “He’s gonna pull through. You and I both know how stubborn Tony is and he's got too much to live for to give up."

"Yeah," Peter sniffled, pulling away finally and grabbing a few tissues when Happy offered him the box.

---

"W-wait… what-what do you mean you don't know? You can't… not know. I-I need to know," Peter said between soft sobs, absolutely shaking even as Pepper draped a blanket over his shoulders.

"I'm sorry, Peter, I really am," Steve said gently, sitting beside the younger man and resting a hand on his shoulder. "There's just… no way to make contact with him on Titan. We'll just have to wait to see if he comes back."

Peter couldn't respond, curling in on himself and burying his face against his knees, leaning against Steve's side when he wrapped an arm around him. Pepper settled in on his other side to smooth his hair down and, her own voice unsteady and thick with tears reassured him that he wouldn't be alone.

It didn't make the painfully empty feeling in his chest any better nor did it stop the tears and painful sobs ripped from his throat. Peter wasn't even sure how he'd be able to live when everyone he loved was so suddenly ripped away from him. He had no family. No friends. And the love of his life may or may not be alive - no one knew.

If it weren't for the remaining Avengers, Happy, and Pepper being there to help piece him back together Peter wasn't sure he would have survived the heartbreak.

---

"Hey, sweetie."

May's voice, soft and soothing, surprised Peter a little. She hasn't come into Tony's room once. But there she was with a Tupperware of food and a sympathetic, sad smile. "How're you holding up?" She asked, coming around and pulling a chair up a little closer to the bed.

Peter hasn't moved from the spot near the head of Tony's bed except to use the bathroom a few times despite everyone's concerns. Even Tony's doctor telling him he should eat and rest. He's barely slept in the last 48 hours and a headache was starting to build which the pain didn't help the emotional distress either.

"Um… do you want me to be honest?" Peter asked brokenly.

May frowned, reaching out to put a hand on Peter's knee. "I'm sorry, baby. I brought you some food. Happy told me you haven't eaten anything since yesterday afternoon. I made your favorite - shepherd's pie," she said, holding out the container of food towards him.

"No thanks," Peter said, sniffling softly and rubbing away the stray tears that just wouldn't stop coming.

"Honey, you have to eat. If not for yourself then for your baby," May told him. "Gotta stay strong and make sure my grandbaby comes out healthy."

"Thought you didn't want a grandbaby," Peter said, reluctantly taking the container and fork that was handed over to him.

"I told you to give me a few days to come to terms with it. Like I said I had a hard time remembering that you're a full-fledged adult now and not some star-struck, overly excitable 20 year old that - honestly - I still saw as my little awkward 15-year-old Peter. And Happy's been talking to me a lot. Told me how well Tony's been taking care of you. How much he really, truly loves you and I don't know… the idea of having a cute little mini-Peter around is something I can definitely look forward to," May said.

Peter couldn't help a small smile at that, at least May had come around. It took just a tiny bit of stress off of him but that tiny bit made breathing a little easier.

"'m finding out what the baby is in a few weeks at my 16-week scan. Or, at least they said they'd try to," Peter told May, picking at the food and managing to eat a few bites.

"How far along are you again?" May asked.

"12 weeks, 5 days," Peter answered around a mouthful of food. "You can't really tell in this sweater but I've already started showing a little," Peter said, smoothing the sweater down so May could see the forming bump.

“You ever thought about doing like… week by week pictures?” May asked. “Everyone seems to be doing them now and it might be something cute you and Tony can look back on later.”

Peter shrugged. “Haven’t thought about it but… maybe,” he said, looking down at Tony. If he made it through this, Peter was sure he’d be thrilled to have those. Of course they’re starting a little late but better late than never. And MJ had a nice camera. “Y’know, I think I will. Tony would like it.”

“Yeah. We can make a little scrapbook or uh… baby book, I guess. With the pregnancy pictures and then all the other little stuff that would go in a baby book,” May said.

“What does even go in a baby book?” Peter asked, taking one last bite of food before putting the lid back on the container and setting it on the bedside table - he was starting to feel nauseous.

May hesitated, a thoughtful look coming over her face before she shook her head and shrugged. “I have no idea,” she laughed.

As stressed and tired as Peter was, he couldn’t help a soft laugh, either.

---

”I know what you’re all doing,” Peter said one afternoon when, after excusing himself from dinner early, Steve walked into the lab. “How at least one other person just so happens to be in the same room as me at all times. You’ve got me on suicide watch,” he said bitterly.

“Pete, we-”

“I know,” Peter said shortly, cutting him off. “You care about me. And I’m fine. Well. I’m not. But I’m not going to… Tony might still be out there, right? And as long as that’s still a possibility I’m not going to… do that.”

Steve sighed heavily, sitting down next to Peter and patting his shoulder firmly. “Look, Peter, we’re all in the same boat here. Just trying to get by, alright? And we want you to know that we’re here for you anytime you need to talk. Every single one of us lost someone we care about. None of us misfits have a family but we’ve got each other as stupidly cheesy as that sounds. And we don’t want to lose you, too. Even if Tony doesn’t come back. You have people here that care deeply about you and would be devastated to lose you.”

"I know," Peter said softly. "Still doesn't make losing everyone else any less painful."

---

A medically induced coma.

They were putting Tony in a coma.

Three weeks of unsuccessfully fighting a raging infection and while it didn’t get worse during that time it didn’t get better either.

Now it was getting worse and the doctors said this would be his best chance.

That didn’t make Peter feel any better about signing the paperwork for it, though. Pepper reassuring him that it was for the best the whole time and holding him tightly as the doctor hooked up the IV. It wasn’t like Tony was conscious anyways, but Peter still couldn’t bear to watch. Instead buried his face against Pepper’s shoulders sniffling softly and his whole body shaking in an effort not to start sobbing again.

Honestly, it was a wonder that Peter even had anymore tears to cry. They’ve been coming nearly non-stop lately.

It was like the first few days in the hospital all over again. People were in and out. Pepper stayed most of the time. Everyone fussed over Peter and brought a lot of food but Peter could barely force himself to eat a few bites of anything before feeling like he was going to puke. Everyone encouraged him to just try to eat throughout the day - even the nurses would check in with water and remind him to eat. Or, on the days that the nausea was really bad they’d bring him protein shakes and saltines.

Even so, he felt like his stomach got bigger every day and, with help from MJ and some of the nurses to find a good spot to do it, he managed to start the week-by-week picture diary thing that May suggested.

When no one was around he’d sit on Tony’s bed and talk to him. Tell him about what happened that day - who visited, how everyone missed him and wanted him to pull through - Peter wasn’t sure if Tony heard any of it but it made him feel better.

Before Peter knew it, his appointment came up and it was the first time he’d left the hospital since they put Tony into a coma - the nurses were kind enough to let him use the shower in the attached bathroom and Pepper, Steve, or Happy would bring him clothes. Despite having actual maternity clothes, Peter just went back to wearing oversized sweaters and leggings again. Now, though, his stomach was obvious even when he wore those sweaters. His bump disrupting the way they laid and even people he didn’t tell would know just by looking at him.

May, Ned, and MJ all came back into the ultrasound room with him after Peter’s initial exam but he couldn’t help the hollow feeling in his chest that someone was missing - because there was.

The tears were an immediate reaction when his midwife announced that he was having a boy and he was still sniffling as he wiped off the gel from his stomach and - Ned and MJ’s arms wrapped around him on either side - walked out to the waiting room…

And everyone was there.

Steve, Rhodey, Pepper, Happy, Bucky, Sam, even Bruce - arm in a sling, still - waiting expectantly.

“Well…?” Steve prompted. “We having a boy or girl?”

“We…?”

“Pete, we’re all in this together. You’re never going to have to be alone - even if Tony doesn’t make it. Which he will. But… point is, we’re all family and we’re all here for you,” Happy said.

Peter, through his tears, couldn’t help the smile that broke out on his face. “The baby’s a boy,” he said, face flushing even as he laughed when the room erupted into cheers and ‘I told you so’s. Immediately there was an argument about who would get what for the kid and how they were going to decorate the baby’s room. Steve promised he’d sketch a few things out and get Peter’s approval before they actually started remodeling, though.

And, again, Peter could breathe a little easier at least for the time being.