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28 September 2012 @ 09:43 am
Exposed [1/1], Iron Man  
Title: Exposed
Fandom: Iron Man
Characters & Pairings: Tony Stark, Pepper Potts, implied Tony/Pepper
Rating & Warnings: T, for nekkid!Tony and (extremely mild) talk about sex
Word Count: 700+
Genre: Hurt/Comfort
Summary: No one warned Tony that saving New York would be so exhausting.
Author's Notes: Written for the [community profile] cottoncandy_bingo, "Shoulder Rub". And I'd like the congratulate Tony Stark for being the first character to end up naked in one of my fics. (However innocent it may be.) It's all downhill from here.

On AO3 I On ff.net


Tony was tired.

No, he thought as he flopped naked on top of his bed, I’m exhausted.

After the capture of Loki, the band of unlikely allies had all but disbanded until Fury had need to call on them again. Bruce was busy working in the labs on the seventy-fifth floor of the newly-dubbed Avenger Tower while all of the others had gone off on their own to try to get back to the normalcy of their lives.

There was only one other person in the crippled building and she was the only one who Tony who have dared to allow to see him in the state he was in: naked and exposed, bruised and cut, weary and pained.

Pepper.

She had been busy fielding the phone calls from investors who were concerned about Tony’s --and their money’s-- well-being all day. When Tony had told her to ignore the calls earlier in the afternoon, she had promised that she would be down as quickly as she could.

“Jarvis, where’s Pepper?” Tony called, his voice muffled by the pillow.

“The same place she was when you asked two minutes ago, sir.”

“Can’t you cut the phone lines or something?” Tony asked.

“I don’t think Miss Potts would appreciate that,” replied Jarvis.

When did upsetting Pepper becoming more of a deterrent to Jarvis than annoying him, Tony wondered with a frown.

Fortunately, the lure of sleep was enough to distract Tony from his frustration. His eyelids closed as he started to drift off. He had barely closed his eyes for a minute --or was it twenty?-- when he heard the door to his bedroom open.

He saw Pepper stand at the doorway with a confused look on her face. “Do you like what you see?” he leered. It wasn’t as quite as effective when his words were slurred with sleep, he noted.

It took Pepper less than two seconds to cross the room. “What are you doing, Tony? Are you alright?”

“I’m sore.” He lifted up one finger. “And I’m tired,” he said as he lifted another finger, not bothering to lift his head off the pillow. “I did crash into the earth two days ago when I saved New York, remember?”

“I thought you said you were feeling back to normal,” she replied as she sat on the edge of the bed. Her wool skirt rubbed against his side, tickling him. “I heard you say that to Bruce earlier.”

He raised his head slightly and gave her a disapproving look. “Like I was going to say anything less. A man has a reputation to keep.”

She raised an eyebrow. “Especially Tony Stark.”

“Exactly.” He flopped back down on the pillow.

Seconds later, he felt Pepper’s tiny, skilled hands start to knead the exhausted muscles in his shoulders, careful to avoid the purple skin where it had bruised. Her touch allowed the stress he had been holding onto so tightly to escape. His muscles loosened; his body relaxed.

He felt safe.

“This is better than sex.” The words spilled out of his mouth without thought.

Pepper stopped her movements as she leaned over and gave Tony a dubious look. “You did not just say that.”

Tony cracked an eye open and gave a half-shrug. “All right,” he conceded. “Maybe not better.”

She continued rubbing and massaging the tender muscles for several minutes. Her hands pulled away and were replaced by her lips as she placed a kiss on each shoulder blade. “I should be getting back to the office,” she said, moving to stand. “There is a conference call that starts in five minutes.”

He tugged on her wrist, pulling her next to him. “Stay.”

“And watch you sleep?”

“Yes.” He lifted his head off the pillow and gave her a pleading look. He knew after everything that had happened in Manhattan, he could convince her to walk away from her responsibilities for a few hours.

She closed her eyes in defeat. “You’re not playing fair,” she said with mock annoyance. Louder, she called, “Jarvis, could you please cancel all calls for the rest of the afternoon and reschedule them for tomorrow morning?”

“Of course, Miss Potts.”

Tony smirked. “Then, later you can remind me just how good sex can be.”