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Cuddle Monster

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The light in the living room was soft, providing just illumination for Natasha to read her book.  Tony was on the sofa next to her, tiredly tapping away at his tablet.  The genius had been awake for over 52 hours at that point, working hard to fix some deficiencies in Clint’s bow.  The marksman was sitting across from the pair, watching TV when he wasn’t answering Tony’s questions about design and functionality of the new bow.

 

Natasha was so absorbed in her book that she failed to notice the quiet that had settled over the room.  There was still the soft background noise coming from the TV, but the excited chatter between the duo had ceased.

 

That’s why she was thoroughly confused when she felt a weight settle onto her shoulder.  When she glanced to the side, Natasha was even more confused when a head of dark, wild hair obstructed her view and tickled her nose.  Shifting her weight, she tried to nudge the slumbering engineer off of her shoulder, but Tony just snuggled closer. 

 

A quiet snicker drew her attention away from the cuddling annoyance latched onto her arm.  Glaring at Clint, she raised a brow in an arch that said ‘help me now or I will kill you later.’

 

“Oh come on, Tash, you know how he gets once he’s found someone to latch onto.  There is no way I’ll be able to pry him off, so just deal.”

 

Natasha intensified her glower, attempting to harm Clint by death-glare alone.  Unfortunately, Clint had been on the receiving end of so many of those looks that he was basically immune to them.  Basically.

 

“He hasn’t slept in like two days.  Let the man sleep,” Clint said as he hopped to his feet and made a hasty retreat.  Natasha stared after him, disbelieving that her supposed ‘partner’ had left her to this…torture. 

 

Tony sleep-mumbled something and curled in tighter to Natasha’s side, seeking the warmth her smaller body offered.  And although she would never admit it, even under threat of death, Natasha found she didn’t mind all that much being Tony Stark’s teddy bear.  Would never admit that Tony was almost tolerable in this state- exhausted, quiet, and cuddly.

 

And when Tony sighed his contentment, Natasha just rolled her eyes and turned back to her book, successfully hiding the small smile that played at the corners of her mouth. 

 

Because really, she couldn’t let the cameras or Jarvis see her in such a state.  Tony would never let her forget it.  And then, because the man could be an insufferable annoyance when he put his mind to it, Natasha would be forced to kill him.  So it was for the good of the team, really, that Natasha kept the small, soft smile all to herself.