"Meredith?" Izzie let herself into Meredith's room where she was already lying in bed with Christina. "Hey, honey." She frowned sympathetically at her friend. "Your dad and Susan are gone, Derek went home too. Alex and I cleaned up downstairs. Anything else I can do?"

"Lay with us." Meredith suggested. So, Izzie flopped down on the bed at Mer and Christina's feet.

"They'll find him." Izzie seemed positive. "Someone as high profile as that? He'll be back within the week."

"He's the number one weapon's developer in the free world." Christina shook her head. "Was probably selling stuff to people on both sides."

"Christina!" Izzie gasped before turning her head to glaring at her.

"What?" Christina shrugged. "I'm just being honest. Although, Dr. Barbie has a point, I'm sure they'll get him back. Eventually."

"Well, I'm going to choose to believe that it will work out in the end. That Tony will come home safe. I'm the meantime, I'm going to bed. Have fun wallowing." Izzie groaned before getting up off the bed and leaving the room.

"Stevens could be right." Christina leaned her head on Meredith's shoulder.

"Yeah, or I could never see my brother again." Meredith sighed. "Typical Tony." She chuckled bitterly. "Just when I think he's going to stay in my life, he disappears."

"What about that red headed woman, why hasn't she called you? The one who came with him when you were sick?" Christina asked. "His assistant? Piper or Pippa?" She racked her brain trying to think of the woman's name.

"Pepper." Meredith remembered, reaching for her cellphone that was already ringing.

"No, that's not it." Christina shook her head.

"Christina it's Pepper, she's calling right now!" Meredith waved her phone at her best friend before answering.

"Yes, uh, hi I'm calling for Meredith Grey?" Pepper sounded tired. Her voice carried a great weight to it. "I'm just realizing now that I'm not certain if this is still her number."

"Pepper, it's me." Meredith didn't know what else to say. Should she ask about Tony? Should she be angry for not being called sooner? She decided to wait and see what the assistant said.

"Meredith, hello." Pepper took a deep breath. How do you tell someone that their only living relative has been kidnapped by terrorists? "I called the hospital first, but they said you'd gone home. I had to have JARVIS look up your phone number. But, none of that is important. I'm calling because…"

"I saw the TV, Pepper." The surgeon interrupted.

"I'm so sorry you had to find out this way." Pepper inhaled a deep breath not really sure what to say. "All I had been told was there'd been an incident. I was waiting on more information from the military when I saw the news myself. Meredith I'm…"

"Stop saying you're sorry." The Surgeon snapped. "You didn't have his kidnapped, did you?"

"No. Of course not."

"Okay. Then here's what's going to happen. You know Tony better than anyone, right? You need to be Tony until he gets back. I can't help you. I don't know the first thing about how that company runs. But you do, Pepper. They're going to find Tony, and when they do, he is going to want to come back to his company. The best you can do for him is make sure he has something to come back to. Keep things going as normal as possible. It's Tony we're talking about."

"Wow. Alright." Pepper was a little taken aback by Meredith's almost cold reaction to the situation, but then she remembered this was Tony's sister. Pepper had heard many stories of Howard Stark form her boss and from what little she saw of Ellis Grey, the two must have made quite a pair. Apparently, they raised their two children to be much tougher than the world needed them to be.

"I'll be sure to call you with any updated information I get." Pepper said.

"Good." Meredith replied. "I don't like finding these things out on the television." So, Meredith hung up the phone. It would be the last time she would hear from Pepper Potts for a while.

"What did she say?" Christina asked, tilting her head slightly to the side. She really did not like the version of Meredith that her family brought out of her best friend. Then again, the whole family was so toxic it was amazing Mer was still alive at all.

"She said she'll let me know if she hears anything." Meredith pulled the bed covers up to her shoulders and snuggled back up against Christina.

"Oh? Like she did when he went missing?" Christian snorted. She began to rant about something but Meredith wasn't listening. Not really. She couldn't help but think back to the day when she'd first met Tony Stark.

Meredith and Elis left the city of Seattle following her parents' divorce and shortly after her fifth birthday. For the first two years, it was just Mer and her mother. There was naturally a string of babysitters along the way, because that was the only way the single mother with no other family could still be a surgeon. When that wasn't possible, she was shuttled off to the hospital daycare. Meredith didn't mind being along so much. At least when she was alone she could do as she pleased.

One morning Meredith came down the stairs for breakfast. She was expecting her babysitting at the time, a shiny, bubbly twenty-something named Becky. Instead it was Elis, sitting up straight at the counter island with a cup of coffee. When Meredith poured herself a bowl of cereal, her mother told her about the friend she'd met a few months ago.

"He has a son about your age." She said. "I've invited them over for lunch." What else could Meredith say but, 'okay' before finishing her breakfast and scurrying right back upstairs. She didn't come back down again until one o'clock when the front doorbell rang. Meredith stood at the top of the stairs. She had a perfect view of the front door from there. She waited, quietly, for her mother to answer the door.

Standing on the front steps was a man roughly her mother's age. His dark brown hair was meticulously arranged as was the dark brown mustache above his lip. His eyes were hard and expressionless but he smiled when he saw Elis. As Howard Stark stepped into the house his son followed a few paces behind. Meredith found herself walking down a few of the steps to get a closer look. Tony looked up at her, crossed his arms over his chest and frowned.

"She'll never be my mother." Was the first thing the young boy said once they were alone together."My father would never marry a doctor."

"She's not a doctor." Meredith argued. "She's a surgeon. One of the best." Meredith knew this to be true because she had heard all of the other surgeons at the hospital saying as much. She puffed her chest out and glared at the boy. "You're rude."

"So are you." Tony huffed. They sat in silence for almost an hour while the adults talked downstairs.

Meredith was fine with this as she didn't like Tony or his father all that much. She already had a dad, back in Seattle, and he would be coming for her any day. She was sure of it. So she was very content ignoring Tony while he fidgeted with his erector set. A heaping mess of aluminum parts, plastic, and motors was scattered around her bedroom floor but she didn't even warrant it a second glance. Instead she sat on her bed playing with Anatomy Jane, taking the dolls organs out one by one and them putting them together in just the right order. She couldn't wait for Mr. Stark and his son to leave.

Now though, Meredith found herself wishing she had answered his calls or at the very least put aside their petty fight years ago. Would they have turned out differently, she couldn't help but wonder, if only she'd bothered to be kinder to Tony from the very first day?


A/N: I really enjoy writing this story. It's so different than anything I've ever done before, but I just feel like Meredith and Tony have so much in common that their stories work well together in such a weird way. It just takes me forever to update, because I still haven't really shaped out an ending for this story yet. I'm in the rollercoaster just as much as you folks are! LOL But hopefully I'll be back with updates sooner rather than later! Thank you to you lovely people who are staying with me despite my erratic update schedule.