Washed Ashore (Pt. 18)
Three months into life in their new home, someone rang the doorbell. Since Tony was in the shower, Peter threw on a bathrobe and went downstairs to open the front door. Unprompted, FRIDAY pulled up the camera footage from the front of the house, which revealed Steve Rogers looking around his and Tony’s property.
Peter groaned and forced himself to keep walking. He reached the door and swung it open, trying not to laugh at the way Steve’s face fell when he saw him.
“Is Tony in?” Steve tried to look over Peter’s shoulder.
“He’s showering right now,” Peter said shortly.
“Right,” Steve nodded, “Well, can I come in and wait for him? I need to talk to him.”
Peter grimaced and opened the door further, letting him follow him inside. He led him to the kitchen, gesturing for him to sit on one of the barstools at the counter.
“Tea? Coffee?” Peter offered, “Tony will probably be a while. He loves his showers.”
“Coffee,” Steve perked up, “He’s been showering? Sometimes he goes too long without one, since he’s always in his lab.”
“No offence, but it’s none of your business if he’s been showering,” Peter said carefully, “That’s kind of private. And it makes me feel like we’re talking about a child. Feel free to ask him, though.”
Steve nodded, trying not to look put off. They sipped at their coffees as they waited for Tony to come out, not doing much to fill in the awkward silence. Finally, after about fifteen minutes, Tony wandered into the kitchen with a towel tied around his hips, stuttering to a stop when he saw Steve.
“Honey, you didn’t tell me you were having an affair,” Tony joked, moving around Steve to stand next to Peter.
“I’m sorry you had to find out this way,” Peter pressed a comforting kiss to his cheek, which was still damp and warm from his shower.
“Tony,” Steve smiled, cutting into their banter, “I need to talk to you about something.”
Tony held up a finger, making him wait for a few seconds as he stole Peter’s mug and chugged the remaining coffee. Peter rolled his eyes but let him do so, taking back the now empty mug to fill it up again.
“Okay, let me guess,” Tony sighed, returning his attention to Steve, “This is another attempt at ending my relationship.”
Steve looked uncomfortable. “Can we have our conversation in private?”
“Anything you want to say to me can be said in front of my husband,” Tony declined, only looking slightly apologetic. He didn’t want to talk about anything like this without Peter in the room.
“Husband?” Peter and Steve asked in unison, eyes wide.
Tony flushed and rushed to say, “I meant boyfriend.”
Peter shook himself out of his surprise, going to soothe Tony like the nice boyfriend he was. “A little too soon, darling, but ask me again in a year.”
Tony turned back to Steve, cheeks burning, “Alright, what do you want?”
“We’ve had to reconstruct our plans and tactics now that you’re gone,” Steve rubbed his forehead, “Just come back, Tony.”
Tony pursed his lips. “What’s so hard to understand about ‘I have a life outside of the team, which I don’t want to be in any longer’? I’ll still be there for the end-of-the-world disasters. I’m not saying I want the world to end. I’m saying I have a company to run that I have to stop putting off on other people – like Pepper, who hasn’t gone on vacation since she started working as my CEO – and a relationship I’m trying to build with Peter.”
Steve’s eyes darkened. “You never tried to leave until Peter came.”
“I did try to stop being Iron Man, and it didn’t work out. But this is different. I’m leaving the team, not the suit,” Tony glared at him, then, “And don’t talk about Peter in that tone.”
“It’s fine,” Peter piped up, “I have a feeling you have a different issue with me, though.”
Steve took a threatening step forward. “I know you’re making Tony do these things. Tony would never abandon the team.”
“It’d be in your best interest for you to step back, Rogers,” Tony warned, “Don’t even think about starting a fight in my home. I don’t care that it’s what you do best.”
“Tony, it’s okay,” Steve assured him, “I’ll make him stop doing this to you.”
“You’re fucking delusional,” Tony groaned, protectively stepping in front of Peter, “You have three seconds to leave or I’m getting a restraining order.”
Steve visibly hesitated. “I’ll help you, Tony, don’t worry.”
When he walked himself out, Tony planted a kiss on Peter’s neck and said, “FRIDAY, notify my lawyers about that restraining order, but keep things quiet. I don’t need the press speculating.”
“You’re actually going to get one?” Peter asked, surprised, “He left.”
“And he’ll try to come back,” Tony told him, “He’s persistent and stubborn that way.”
“Okay,” Peter’s eyebrows furrowed, “But how did he know our address?”
It turned out that Natasha had placed a tracker on Tony’s car before they left the compound, which enraged Tony to the point that he drove back up to personally oversee his employees take back any Stark tech left in the building. He reamed her out in front of the rest of the Avengers, viciously enough that, five years later, Tony and Peter were living peacefully and without any interventions.
Tony was waiting for Peter to come home from his job interview at the moment. Peter had ended up attending Columbia University, and now had a bachelor’s degree in chemistry, which would surely come in handy in getting the position he’d applied for. Tony had no doubt that Peter would get the job; hence the meal he’d personally slaved over to congratulate his husband of two years.
He greeted Peter at the door with a kiss, ushering him inside and straight to the dining table, which was already set up with the cutlery and filled plates. He sat down after waiting for Peter to do the same, pouring champagne into their flutes.
“What’s all this for?” Peter asked, bringing the flute to his lips and tilting it, allowing the liquid to seep into his mouth.
“To celebrate your new job, obviously,” Tony scoffed, “Try the garlic bread, I made it myself.”
“I didn’t get the job,” Peter said quickly, before Tony could say anything else.
Tony’s mouth fell open. “What? I’ll talk to them, baby, something’s not right. Or you can come work at Stark Industries – it’s what I’d prefer, anyway. You wouldn’t even have to apply; I’ll take you straight to my labs. Which is pointless, since you already spend every day in there with me; you’ll just be paid for it now.”
“Imagine that,” Peter mused, “Being paid to spend time with my husband.”
“Doesn’t it sound amazing?” Tony boasted, satisfied eyes glancing automatically at the ring adorning Peter’s left hand, as they did each time the word ‘husband’ was mentioned in his vicinity.
“It sounds torturous,” Peter corrected teasingly, “But anyway, I was just joking. I did get the job.”
Tony dropped his fork with a loud clatter. “You know what? I’m not even mad. Congrats, sweetheart. I’m so proud of you.”
Peter raised his flute of champagne. “Thank you. To new beginnings, I guess.”
“To new beginnings,” Tony agreed, clinking their flutes together.