Stephen and Morgan had been making Christmas cookies for the entire evening.
To say the least, both he and Tony had missed out on an email from Morgan’s teacher saying that her school’s year end Christmas party required a homemade contribution from everyone attending.
“Homemade?”, Tony had scoffed that morning, after he had dug up the email from the depths of his crowded inbox, following Morgan’s last minute announcement of her class Christmas party the next day. “What do they think we are? Stay-at-home vegan moms who have days to devote to making glucose and dairy free cupcakes?”
“You’re basically a stay-at-home mom, Tony”, Harley had muttered from his spot on the leather La-Z-Boy, earning a light smack on the head from Tony.
An Avengers consultant meeting Tony had to attend meant cookie-making fell on Stephen as soon as Morgan got home from school. Peter would have gladly helped had he been home, but the teen was still in Massachusetts, taking his final exams of the semester before the Christmas holidays. While Peter would have been disappointed to know he’d missed out on Christmas baking, the other resident teen had different ideas.
“Harley, come help ice”, Stephen prompted the teen as he pulled another tray of cookies out of the oven.
“Why am I getting pulled into this?”, Harley complained from behind his phone, practically drowning in his MIT hoodie. The family’s long-haired tabby cat, Jarvis, was laying on his chest, completing the teen’s smushed look.
“‘Cause you’re my brother, and brothers help their little sisters”, Morgan stated matter-of-factly as she applied a generous dollop of green icing to a shortbread tree. Stephen gave the teen a pointed grin; he could practically see Harley’s heart melt from across the room.
“Okay, okay, I’ll help ice.”
Two hours and almost eighty cookies later, Tony came in the door, peeling his winter coat off as he gave Morgan a kiss on the cheek.
“Daddy, your nose is cold!”, she accused, barring his way from further kisses with an icing-covered spoon. Tony grinned as he stood, rummaging in his pant pocket.
“What about you, Steph? Are you going to reject me and my cold nose?” He then pulled a sprig of mistletoe out from his pocket, no doubt stolen from the Avengers compound, holding it above his head with great flourish. Stephen couldn’t help but smile as he wiped his flour covered hands off on a dishcloth, dipping his head to meet Tony’s pursed lips.
“Of course not. I love you, cold nose and all.”
“Oh, gross, guys. Get a room”, Harley said, pretending to dry-heave from where he was washing icing bowls at the sink.
“Daddy”, Morgan interrupted, pointing at the empty spot on the table where Tony had set the piece of mistletoe down. “Jarvis just took the missy toes.”
“That’s okay, he can have it”, Tony said, swiping some icing from the bowl she was cleaning out.
“Mistletoe is poisonous to cats, Tony”, Stephen informed him tiredly, already trailing the cat into the dining room, prompting Tony to tear after him, wheedling Jarvis’ name in what Peter called his “Cat Mom” voice.
“Shit”, Morgan whispered wisely to her brother, who nodded in agreement.