GUESS WHO'S BACK! MEEE! I'm actually surprised I was able to put this up so fast but I have a decent amount of this fic planned so here we go! Also, this is a SEQUEL to my other fic "Help Me". So if you haven't already read it, I suggest you do. ;) Otherwise, you'll get confused. Quickly. =)
Pepper walked into Tony's room, a stack of papers in one hand and holding her Blackberry up to her ear with her elbow as she opened the door. "Yes…yes, of course I'll let him know of the changes…thanks, you too-" She hung up, placing the phone on the table.
"What changes?" Tony asked, stepping out of the closet, tie draped around his neck undone.
"Press conference has been moved up two hours which means you can fit in that meeting with the MIT staff at three, I'll go ahead and call them in a couple of minutes so they're clued in; you also have the board of directors meeting at noon-"
"I don't remember agreeing to any of these-"
"Of course you don't," Pepper said smugly, playing along. "That's what I'm here for. Lunch is provided at the meeting and then there's that…benefit, or party whichever you prefer which is Tuesday night-"
"That's next week, there's no way I'm going to file that information in my head anytime soon," Tony interrupted again, grabbing his jacket.
"-which you must…for the thirty seventh time, attend. Though I doubt you'll even question that one…it is after all a party, you practically live for them-"
She put aside the papers she was holding before standing in front of him to put on his tie. It had become some sort of routine for them and had even started as a joke. But now, every morning like clockwork, whenever Pepper saw Tony's tie draped around his neck, she fixed the problem willingly.
And so continued the typical Friday morning at the Stark mansion just before nine in the morning. The day ahead was always packed with appointments and meetings that kept both Tony and Pepper busy but neither of them bothered getting out of bed until what JARVIS had successfully dubbed "crunch time". So at 9:00 am, Pepper was running up and down the house like a rabbit on steroids, trying to get Tony out of the house who, quite frankly, couldn't care any less about what was planned.
"I have a few papers for you to sign," she added as she remembered the pile of papers waiting for them.
"All these papers you make me sign are getting me worried-"
"Why, if I didn't know you any better I'd say you didn't trust me, Mr. Stark." Pepper joked, straightening Tony's tie. "And if I do say so myself I think I've proven myself over the years."
He smiled before his lips took hers. His hands rested on her waist while hers slowly slipped down from the knot of his tie. Pepper quickly pulled away, knowing quite well from experience that if she didn't, they weren't going to leave the house any time soon. "Mm…we should get out of the house," she warned between kisses.
"Nah…" he muttered.
"You'll be late-"
"So I'm late to the ten o' clock meeting-"
"Whatever," he muttered as he tasted her. He could never get enough.
For three months they'd been dating, and for those three months they'd managed to keep their relationship completely under the radar without raising a single suspicion. As soon as they stepped out of the house, they maintained that relatively professional relationship everyone around them was used to (after all, if they were completely professional, questions would be raised – Tony was never completely professional). Actually, there was really only one rule – no PDA.
Pepper's phone started to ring, forcing her to pull back, smirking at Tony's disappointment. "Ms. Potts," she answered, trying not to squirm as Tony planted light butterfly kisses on her neck.
"He's…not available right now can I take a message?" She tried to make a serious face to warn Tony but only managed to giggle childishly.
"Of course, I'll tell him you called….thanks, bye-" Pepper quickly hung up, flushed. "That's not fair."
Tony looked like he had won the jackpot. Arrogant jackass. "Of course it's fair," he answered, smirking as the two of them left his room.
"That was the chief operating officer of Hammer Industries," Pepper told him, stopping by the nearest table and laying out the papers Tony needed to sign. "That meeting's at five."
"What the hell for?"
"I think it's to iron out any last details about the deal."
"They're so demanding for a dying company," Tony gloated as he signed. After Justin Hammer's stunts Hammer Industries had gone downhill ever since. So being the genuinely nice guy that he was, Tony, on behalf of Stark Industries, offered to buy the company. The vote to sell was unanimous, yet they still managed to find room to negotiate the deal.
"Mmhmm," Pepper sighed, rolling her eyes. "Just sign these and get the hell out of here."
Again, her phone started ringing and without a second thought she answered. "Ms. Potts."
"Ginny, it's me."
What the hell? "I'm sorry, who?" Pepper tried to answer smoothly as she left Tony's side, looking for a more private location.
"It's your mother," Vanessa Potts answered a little annoyed.
"Yeah, I know…I'm actually in a meeting-"
"At nine in the morning? You never have meetings this early."
"Are you keeping tabs on me?"
"So you don't have a meeting?"
"I'm a little busy, though-"
"Honey, I just want to ask if you have any plans for tomorrow."
Every cell in Pepper's body was on red alert, suspicion raging. "Why…?"
"For your birthday, Ginny! We always make plans for your birthday…wait…your sister is here she…what?" she wasn't talking to Pepper anymore.
"Hey!" Pepper recognized her younger sister's perky voice.
"Hey, Liz." Pepper tried to sound at least somewhat enthusiastic.
"So where do you want to go for dinner tomorrow night? We made reservations at that new Italian restaurant that opened in Santa Monica-"
"Actually…" Pepper started hesitantly, twiddling with a pen. "I…already have plans…"
She heard Liz whisper something to her mother before asking, "With who?"
"Why are you asking me like that? It's not illegal."
"It's a GUY!" Liz squealed and Pepper rolled her eyes, sucking in her lips as she heard her sister and mother make wild grabs at the phone.
"You're on speaker, Ginny."
"Who is it?"
"Obviously it's someone. If it was no one, you'd tell us but since you told us it's no one it by default has to be someone…"
"Quiet, Liz…who is it? Do we know him? What's his name?"
Pepper exhaled loudly. Actually, she didn't have any plans for tomorrow night and she wasn't sure Tony did either. After all, he hadn't remembered her birthday in years so there was nothing that said he'd remember it tomorrow. If he ended up forgetting, she wouldn't be angry…disappointed, maybe, but not angry.
But she couldn't help but hope either.
"His name's…Anthony…" she finally decided. It wasn't a lie, and it was much easier than telling her mom she was dating her boss. It was too early in the morning for that drama.
"Do we know him? When can we meet him?"
"Uh…soon, eventually…listen, I really need to go, I'll call you back-" She quickly hung up before either of them could get another word in and went to find Tony.
"Have you gotten all those papers signed?" Pepper asked, finding Tony messing with one of his tablet computers.
"There were only two of them, Pepper," he said, not even looking up.
"No, there were about a dozen."
"Oops…don't know where those are then."
She walked up behind him to see what he was working on and immediately grimaced. He was adding upgrades to one of his suits.
Tony sighed and tossed the tablet aside. He'd always known she didn't like the Iron Man stunt he pulled off but over the past few months he'd gotten to know and understand just how much she hated it. Iron Man might as well be the devil and she was convinced it was going to be the end of him, and no amount of reassuring on Tony's part would change her mind.
"Which ones are left for me to sign?"
"It's fine we can get them done in the car-"
"It's not even my suit," he said stopping her, knowing that's what was bugging her now. "Rhodey decided to go play with his last week and trashed a bunch of the weapons on it, I'm only upgrading his."
"Are you going to flying around in your suit anytime soon?" Pepper asked raising an eyebrow.
Tony made a face that read, What do you think?
"Then I guess there's no reason to bring Rhodey into this, now is there?"
"Don't be angry at me-"
"I'm not angry," she denied. And she genuinely wasn't. "I'm just…I don't like it. It scares the hell out of me, that's all. Especially when you go riding in that thing in the middle of the night, I just don't-"
"How about," he quickly interrupted before she went into full on rant mode. "We get those papers signed?"
Pepper frowned. "Did…did you just change the subject to keep me from ranting?"
Uh oh. "No," he answered too quickly.
"Yes you did! I can't believe you did that, you want to me stop talking?"
"Okay, time to go-" Tony said quickly, leading her out of the house. He wasn't going to hear the end of this one.
"You want me to stop talking!"
"I never said that-"
"Fine. If you never want to hear my voice again, I can do that-"
"Okay, I'm sorry. Please don't stop talking," he said, rolling his eyes as they reached the front door.
"It's not my fault, you know, the only reason I talk is because I worry about-"
Tony stopped at the door and planted a kiss on her lips, silencing her. "You're ranting. I admit it. Now it's time go," he said opening the door. He curled his lip and raised an eyebrow as if trying to figure out whether or not she was going to hit him or keep ranting anyway.
Pepper stayed where she was swaying back and forth slightly, thinking. She finally shrugged, rolled her eyes, and walked out of the house without another word. Tony let out a sigh of relief, as he followed her out towards the car.
Not entirely sure the proper name for that flat iPad like machine Tony carries everywhere is "tablet" but that's the best word I could think of.
I will also state this: I AM taking risks. I have some ideas and I'm NOT entirely sure you'll like them all which is scary in itself. All I can say is this: Hold on for me! =) thanks
One last thing - obviously this fic isn't starting with instantaneous drama like the last one (give me some credit, guys) A measly, short chapter, yes I agree. But there's more to come, ya? Leave a review on your way out, please. =)