The Almost Forgotten Marriage Contract of 1763 - part 4:
Blanket Disclaimer: Neither the Harry Potter Universe nor the Marvel Universe belong to me. Everything belongs to their legal owners. I just play around a bit with possibilities. (:
Summary: What would you do when suddenly confronted with a 200+ years old marriage contract by a teen and her lawyer? Run for the hills? Call the nice guys with the white jackets? Certainly not - agree? Well, Tony Stark always was a bit unique.
Warnings for this fic: language, (mentions of) canon-typical violence, allusions to abuse, allusions to suicide, allusions to torture and war, implied scenes of a sexual nature, mentions of non-consensual intercourse (it is a comparison expressed by one of the characters), etc.
- Chapter 4 –
(Time Skip, two years later and/or after Iron Man 1)
Tony had just finished taking the Stark Tower off the grid, while Pepper controlled her end of the transaction over the screens. At their moment of triumph, Ivy was still in Britain, no doubt being showered in baby stuff and congratulations by her friends and family. Earlier that day, Hermione had taken her best friend along for a surprise baby shower, back with the girls from school. Was it weird that Tony missed her already?
Unfortunately, Agent Coulson soon disturbed their celebratory toast, bringing along super-bad news. "Where is Miss Potter?"
"Currently somewhere in Britain. I don't know when she'll be back. Her friends threw her a surprise party," Tony explained absentmindedly, clever eyes flying over the classified information spread out before him. He did not want SHIELD to know anything about the pregnancy for as long as possible. His baby would not be manipulated in some position within the department, thank you very much.
"That's unfortunate. Fury wanted her on board for this," Coulson commented lightly, obviously not really believing the billionaire's words.
Pepper sighed resignedly, rolling her eyes in an uncharacteristic display of unprofessional behavior. "It's true. Besides, I doubt she would have accompanied Tony either way, regardless of what Director Fury wants help with."
This response seemed to catch Agent's interest, even more than anything else that they might have said. "Why?"
"Because she's on health-related leave from work?" The genius shot back in a grumpy fashion. He was hardly going to tell SHIELD that his wife of eight years was eight months pregnant with their first child. A girl, according to JARVIS. But don't tell Ivy or she would kill him.
Later, on the way to the 'topsecret' SHIELD headquarters, Tony tried several times to reach Ivy, but always got referred to her mailbox within one beep, indicating she had yet to turn her phone back on. Silently hoping she would somehow listen to it before returning to Stark Tower, Tony left his wife multiple messages, worriedly telling her to stay somewhere safe, to sleep at Potter Manor. Of course, his life could never be that easy.
(Later, during the scene when Director Fury yells at Steve and Tony)
Fury was interrupted by Tony's phone ringing. It was a specialized alert, only to be activated in the direst circumstances: when Ivy was in reasonably grave danger.
"Sir, Mrs. Stark has returned home," JARVIS trusty voice reported dutifully.
Tony's heart dropped several stories below his stomach, his face blanching at the thought of someone hurting her because she was back in the country. Loki was not above using Thor's, his own (adopted) brother's friend, so what horrible things would he do to Ivy? She would not be able to defend herself as well as usual, thanks to the pregnancy.
"Fuck," Tony cursed audibly, earning himself a remonstrating glare from the Capsicle and a raised eyebrow from Fury. "Tell her immediately to get straight back to Hermione's."
However, the bad news seemingly could not leave it at that. JARVIS replied, "I'm afraid that is not possible, Sir. Someone disabled my hardware at the Tower."
Swearing up a blue streak, which forced the blush on Capsicle's cheeks to darken several shades, approaching crimson when he finished, Tony jumped out of his chair, about to storm out of the large room. "I know where Loki is!"
The magic words to get passed Fury. "Where?!"
"Stark Tower! It satisfies his damned diva heart," the billionaire yelled shortly over his shoulder, already preparing his suit for a swift departure. If Reindeer Games even thought about using his wife as a hostage... Then he took off, leaving utter mayhem behind.
Loki stood near the windows of the lavish penthouse when Tony arrived. Thankfully Ivy was out of sight. Tony prayed she would stay wherever the hell she was. Probably still sleeping. Exchanging banter mindlessly, the genius slipped on the markers for his other suit, hoping to god and Merlin that he'd lived to see his daughter.
(After Hulk smashes Loki and Tony takes on the nuke)
JARVIS rang Ivy's cell number and the home one simultaneously. After the first ring, the cell was answered. Tony was so relieved, he forgot that his comm. line was still open to the rest of the Avengers.
"What's going on? Why did you lock me in the bedroom?" Ivy questioned worriedly, a hint of anger edging her voice.
"I'm sorry," the genius choked out. Immediately, he held all of his wife's attention. "They fired a fucking nuke at the city and I'm gonna try to plant it on the invading alien army. You'll find a Norse God in the living room."
She understood immediately. "It's alright. Easy." A short wet sob. "I love you."
"I love you too, Ives. Keep up with the flower tradition, okay?"
"Promise." Then the line went dead. He nuked the Chitauri and knew his suit wouldn't make it back to earth. Not in one piece.
(Later, after the Hulk roared Tony back to life)
The general opinion on his not being dead seemed to amount to various degrees of relief. Tony closed his eyes for a moment, relishing in the knowledge that yes, he would probably get to hold his daughter after all. Capsicle generously helped him up from his position on the cold, dusty concrete.
"Who were you talking to?" Barton asked, obviously trying to distract them all from the destruction around them.
"You'll see. She'll be furious and probably blasting her way through the door."
As it turned out, Tony was proven right. They found a very intimidating, petite woman sticking her primary wand into Loki's face, nearly drawing blood, forcing his eyes to cross.
"It's alright, honey. We've got this," the genius muttered reassuringly, trying to calm her down. All this excitement and upset could not be good for the baby.
"What is my official last name?" Ivy bit out tersely, obviously falling back into old (war) habits.
"Stark." That's when she began to cry hopelessly, much to everyone else's utter confusion.
"The line went dead so I thought..."
"Shh, it's alright. Still alive. See?" Evidently this reassured her enough to continue glaring dangerously at Loki. If he hadn't almost died because of that bastard, Tony would have laughed uproariously. Okay, maybe he was more afraid of his very pregnant wife than Reindeer Games. She could be MEAN when she was sufficiently riled up. "Honey, we gotta bring him back to Fury," the genius ventured to say cautiously when no one else dared to open their mouths.
"Alright. I'm going to come along too. If he's putting so much as a hair out of place, the consequences won't be pretty," Ivy threatened, glaring hard at everyone present.
"If you're certain," Capsicle muttered, unsure of what else to. So Ivy turned around, displaying her bump for the first time. Loki walked in front of her, limping slightly.
"Shut up if you know what's good for you," Tony hissed before Barton could protest.
Fury only sighed resignedly when he spotted the addition to their group. The very pregnant, furious addition. "Miss, what the hell?"
Tony winced. This would not be pretty. But then again, he would get off lightly, while watching the free show of one Cyclops receiving a legendary tongue-lashing from his fierce wife... His cringe turned into a grim smirk. Ivy adopted a pose remarkably similar to a cobra which is about to strike. Fatally. Realization dawned on Fury too, but it was too late.
"You! Why the hell was a bloody alien war staged on top of our home without my knowledge? You could have sent one of your minions to at least tell me. Stumbling over a beaten Norse God in our living room, after thinking my husband died, just takes the cake! Always knowing everything! Always on the moral high ground," Ivy snorted derisively. "Where the bloody hell were you? Your ethics? What if Tony hadn't distracted Loki? I was home all of today! JARVIS was disabled, but you know the Minister. You know Hermione's number. Any of those could have sent a message or someone over immediately! So Tony could have died, our baby could have died, and me too. Now, Director, where is your bloody moral high ground?"
Wedding ring: $24,000. Wedding ceremony: $3,000. The look on Fury's face: priceless.
Swirling around much too gracefully for a highly pregnant woman, Ivy flicked her hair in the Director's face. Behind the Starks, a team of dazed Avengers followed.
"Holy shit!" Barton finally breathed out. "No wonder you're immune to Natasha's death glares."
Ivy pinned the archer with a piercing glare of her own. "What is that supposed to mean?"
Tony jumped to introduce everyone. "That's Legolas, the Black Widow, Dr. Bruce Banner, Thor and Capsicle."
"…Pleasure," Ivy drawled, still stabbing Barton via her eyes.
"Guys, meet my wife Ivy. She used to dabble in Special Forces until recently."
"Congratulations on the baby?" Rogers, bless his heart, replied.
"Thank you," the sole witch beamed. It still terrified Tony whenever her moods switched like that.
"So when did you get hitched?" Barton wondered.
"Eight years ago," the genius admitted, smirking when he spotted their hilarious disbelief.
Ivy boxed him slightly. "Don't mess with their minds. Do you want to eat out?"
"Yes. The Shawarma joint."
"Alright. But I need to send Hermione a text real quick. Or she's going to kill us both."
"Nah, you're pregnant. She's going to kill me for stressing you out."
"Whatever. I know where you keep your will anyway."
Tony chuckled, slinging an arm around her hip, gently rubbing the baby bump while Ivy called her sister. Bruce seemed amused by their antics while the rest couldn't quite process what happened in front of their eyes yet.
"Man of Iron, congratulations on winning the affections of such a lovely lady! The sign of Sol etched on her forehead speaks greatly for her character," Thor boomed loudly.
Tony grinned. "Oh, technically she proposed." Without watching, Ivy slapped the back of his neck. Natasha appeared to be impressed. "More technically, it was an arranged marriage," the inventor amended. This seemed to shock everyone else into silence again.
"I thought arranged marriages were prohibited?" Steve muttered.
Tony rolled his eyes. "Long story. Honey, we're almost there."
Ivy devoured a very large portion of cheese balls with a side of ranch dressing, pickles, and root beer. Normally she despised most of that stuff, but apparently his daughter loved it.
"So, what kind of Special Forces do you work in?" Steve finally asked.
"Classified." She replied shortly.
"Why did you decide to do that job?" Natasha surprisingly asked.
"I never woke up one morning, thinking, goodness I want to blow up stuff. It's just what I'm best at. It's fun too. Well, sometimes," his wife amended. Her reply implied a lot more than what you would normally expert from her, if you knew Ivy's past. Tony squeezed her leg gently under the table.
"Are you British?" Capsicle finally wondered, obviously out of topics for conversation.
However, to their collective surprise, she scowled. "Yeah, I was born in Britain alright. Just don't live there anymore." Thankfully Bruce turned the topic back to the baby, distracting them all from today's horrors
That night they all slept in the surviving guest quarters of Stark Tower. Ivy woke at three am, fixing herself a cup of water while she tried hard not to cry. Tony found her there, clutching at the glass as if her life depended on it. Instead of saying something, he pulled her as close as possible with that baby bump.
"I love you. I really do. But if I have to write a speech for your funeral anytime soon, you'll regret it."
He chuckled lightly. "I'm sorry. There was no other option available at the time." In response, Ivy only snuggled deeper into his embrace, trying to convey her need for getting into his personal space. "Let's get you back to bed, hon. I'll be right beside you."
"Mm. 'Kay." Ivy yawned, falling asleep in his embrace.
Three hours later, they were back in the kitchen, wearing bathrobes over their sleeping attire.
"Do you want to eat breakfast and then try to sleep for a little bit again?" Tony asked her, worry for once unmasked. Unbeknownst to him at the time, Hawkeye was lounging above them in the vent. For only a few seconds, a look of pure agony crossed Ivy's face. Her hands rubbed her bump and lower back soothingly. "Braxton-Hick or the real deal?"
Ivy bit her lip until the pain wore off. "Real deal, I think. This doesn't even feel remotely like those cramps."
"JARVIS? Initiate Code Banshee. Call Pepper and cancel any immediate plans for the week. Then call Hermione and ask her to spread the word."
"Yes, Sir. What about the Avengers?"
"Tell them they can do whatever they want."
"As you wish, sir. Healer Adams is on her way."
"Awesome. My water just broke," Ivy panted out.
Tony swiftly brought her back to their temporary bedroom, helping his wife into an old nightgown before trying to make her comfortable. Butterfingers brought ice cubes and fresh towels. Ivy waddled through the room, leaning on Tony, because she couldn't lie down at the moment.
"Sir, Healer Adams has arrived. I will direct her to your location."
Indeed, the magical doc found them quickly, shooing Tony off due 'to using too much magic', but mostly because the pureblood wasn't used to having a male in the birthing room. To Tony's astonishment, the whole team sat, more or less awake, in the kitchen, seemingly waiting for him.
"Isn't your wife having your kid?" Barton commented perplexed. "I thought you'd stick by her side."
The genius shrugged. "I was going to, but got kicked out of the room by the midwife." At that Natasha snorted.
"So... You ready to be a dad?" Rogers asked.
Tony stared at him incredulously. "No, god no. I'm the last person anyone should have the misfortune to get as a dad. I'm irresponsible and a jerk 90% of the time. Haven't the foggiest what to do with a kid."
Unexpectedly, he received a head slap similar to the one Ivy gave him yesterday. "You're going to be a good dad, mate," Ron argued. "Besides Ivy is going to kill you if your kid is missing anything."
Tony's eyes crinkled in their corners. "Thanks, dude."
"You're welcome, man. So let me guess, this is your team from yesterday? Nice of them to stay with you for this. I was a mess with Rosie."
"Sure. Ron, meet superheroes. Team, meet my brother-in-law."
"Mate, gonna warn you now. The whole clan is flocking to New York. Except Fleur and Bill, they drew babysitting duty."
Tony blanched. "All of them?"
"Yup. Seriously what did you expect? You're family."
Apparently Tony's continued speechlessness was cause for alarm. "How many people would that be?" Rogers questioned tentatively, feeling somewhat protective of this team.
Ron scrunched his nose up. "Around fifteen or twenty. Depends if they get off work today."
Tony proceeded to bash his head against the kitchen table before pacing, sitting down, and nervously walking around again. Ron just watched bemusedly, but worried about Ivy too. Bruce brewed more coffee for the waiting group.
A beaming Hermione bounced into the room, dragging Tony off. Small cries could be heard from inside their temporary bedroom. "Go on."
The genius cautiously opened the door, hesitating lightly, but then the desire to see his wife won over. Ivy was sitting up against the headboard, holding a tiny bundle in her arms which was nursing. Thankfully no blood or gore was in sight, Healer Adams apparently had taken care of any injuries sustained during the labor. Tony seated himself next to his wife, looking at their daughter for the first time. She was still a bit red and wrinkly, but from underneath her hat dark hair peaked out. Her tiny fingers were curled into small fists and someone had dressed her in a white onesie, striped green and pink tights and a matching hat. The onesie was mostly covered by a pink shirt and if he said so himself, his daughter was perfection.
"I was thinking about naming her Violet," Ivy admitted, staring lovingly at the infant.
Tony swallowed hard. "Violet Ivy Stark. Sounds very beautiful."
They tore their eyes off the newly named baby before grinning goofily at each other. Healer Adams filled in the birth certificate, assuring them that everything would be taken care of with the nonmagical government. When little Violet was sated, burped, she fell asleep in her mother's arms.
"Go, show her off. I'm taking a bath and then I'll sleep."
Very carefully Tony took his sleeping newborn daughter from Ivy. His wife instructed him on how to hold her before pressing a kiss to Violet's cheek. The genius gently kissed her. "Thank you."
"You're welcome." Tony knew she needed some space so he left.
Everyone had congregated in the kitchen, waiting for more news. Though Molly had shared gender, weight and height, both astonishingly healthy, with anyone present already, they still wanted to see the baby in person. When they spotted the billionaire with the tiny bundle in his arms the room quieted. Tony chuckled lowly when his daughter waved a fist in her sleep, uncaring that she drooled slightly on his favorite shirt. In his eyes, no one could have produced a more perfect baby.
"She's sleeping right now, but her name is Violet, Violet Ivy Stark," the new father announced quietly, eyes barely leaving his baby girl. Hermione beamed, as did several other females present.
"Oh, you did name her after a flower," Molly gushed happily.
Spotting the questioning looks on the Avengers' faces, George explained, "It's a tradition in Ivy's family to name the daughters after flowers. Ivy-Rose Daisy Stark is the daughter of Lily Potter and niece to Petunia Dursley. Ron and Hermione named their daughter Rose in honor of Ivy and because she is her godmother." Both assassins filed that information away for later. Bruce simply raised his eyebrows.
"What meaning bears the name Violet Ivy?" Thor questioned as quietly as possible.
"In contemporary flower language, violets signify modesty, love, faith, and watchfulness," JARVIS informed everyone present. "Ivy symbolizes affection, fidelity, wedded love and friendship."
Thor beamed at no one in particular. "A name well chosen for a beautiful babe."
Tony grinned at the God of Thunder, sitting down next to him as the congregation slowly disappeared; most of them were taking a look at the damage upstairs. "Thanks, Rock of Ages."
Soon, Violet woke up, blinked up at her daddy with big blue eyes and gurgled happily. The look of awed wonder on Tony's face would leave an impression on all of them.
"Why does she have blue eyes?" Barton asked finally.
"All babies do right after birth. I hope she'll inherit Ivy's eyes." Tony replied.
Violet's tiny fingers firmly wrapped around Tony's, waving them around like a pro. "She's gonna be a daddy's girl through and through," Andromeda muttered, smiling at the small infant. Teddy stood next to his grandmother unsure how to proceed. "C'mon, Teddy bear."
"Violet is wrinkly," the small boy complained.
Tony shrugged. "That will clear after a while. But I want you to promise me something. When you're at Hogwarts, you and your cousins need to make sure no boys touch her. I don't want her to get cooties."
This finally had them all laughing, albeit mindful of the curious infant.
Thank you to everyone who read, reviewed, followed and fav-ed this little fanfic. I am still stunned by the response to Marriage Contract. It means much to me to observe your enthusiasm for my late night drivel(s). If you enjoyed this story, I think you might also like my other HP/Avengers Crossovers 'Developments', 'Petal' or 'The End Is Just The Beginning...'. Additionally to your lovely support, I just found out I passed two of my hardest uni-exams, one of which even with an A/1!, so please excuse me for now. I have a date with some delicious chocolate and a bottle of sparkling coke tonight!
All the best, W