A/N: This takes place during "My Sister, the Home Wrecker" in Season 5 and reviews Tonys thoughts about and feelings for Jeannie from "Guess Who's Going To Be A Bride, Part 2" onward.
"For the last time, Master, I did not call you a fuddy-duddy, and I did not pop out."
Tony moved away from the door toward his wife growling, "Jeannie, I saw you," as he picked up a plate of hor d'oeuvres. He then walked back to his place near the door to make sure they weren't overheard when Jeannie whirled around.
"Well, you do not see me any more!" Then she blinked and vanished before his eyes. Tony sighed, exasperated.
"Will you stop that?" he called. The next thing he knew, Tony was being pushed forward and the hor d'oeuvres went flying through the air.
"Oh, I'm sorry," he heard Dr. Bellows say, and then, "Well, she's not here!"
"No, she isn't, is she?" Tony replied coolly. "Would you like some hor d'oeuvres, sir?" he asked, placing the empty tray in his hands.
Tony hastened into the living room where he found Roger and Mrs. Bellows. "Mrs. Bellows," he called as he walked in, "have you seen Jeannie, by any chance?"
"No!" she quickly replied. Then, more calmly, she said, "No, I haven't, Major. I thought she was with you."
"Oh, no," Tony answered. "Roger," he said, grabbing his best friend by the arm and stealing his attention away from the flower he was smelling, "would you give me a hand looking for Jeannie? She popped out on me," he hinted. Then Tony headed for his bedroom calling, "Jeannie!"
When he walked into his bedroom he called for her again. "Jeannie, darling, would you come on out, please?" He looked around and saw no sight of her so he walked into their bathroom and searched for her there. "Jeannie, please, come back."
Of course, this wasn't their first fight. And compared to some of their fights over the past four years, this hardly counted at all. But it was their first disagreement since they had gotten married only two weeks before and Tony had no idea how it would affect them.
He was worried what it would mean, especially since they had a houseful of guests. How could he diffuse this situation with everyone else around? If it had just been them alone, he could have handled it. He could have found her, apologized, and spent the remainder of the evening seducing her, loving her.
Making love to Jeannie had easily become one of his favorite past-times. When they were married, Tony could hardly wait to get his hands on her. But surprisingly, after two thousand years of living, the most experience Jeannie had before their wedding night had been feeling the embarrassment of his morning erection once when they woke up in each others arms. Tony was still embarrassed just thinking about her reaction when it had happened.
It had been during their first year together, shortly after telling each other, though reluctantly, of their mutual love and affection. Jeanne had woken before him and squirmed delightfully in his embrace. Her movement had woken him up as well, and he pulled her closer to him, until they both finally realized the awkwardness of the situation. Tony had very quickly moved away and hurried to head to the shower, doing his best to keep his back to her. Later that morning, after a cold shower, Tony cautiously approached Jeannie. But to her credit, she acted as though nothing strange had happened, and happily went about her business. From then on, Tony and Jeannie felt more familiar with each other. Her skin against his felt more like home than ever.
Which had been frustrating when Jeannie had left him to become Queen of Basenji, and which had come in very handy for their wedding night, despite her inexperience. The height of his ecstasy that night two weeks ago could only be matched by the depths of his despair during those three weeks in the Aleutians.
Tony sighed as he looked behind the shower curtains and called, "Come on out, Jeannie. Please?" He was simply thankful in that moment that Jeannie had taken him back. He loved remembering the look on her face when he introduced her as his fiancé to Dr. Bellows and General Schaffer.
After Jeannie blinked them home and a quick chat with Roger, Tony and Jeannie finally found themselves alone for the first time in three excruciatingly, agonizingly long weeks. But she had been so surprised that night she had even tried to talk him out of their engagement.
Needless to say, the first thing he did once they were alone was kiss her. Then he just tried to hold her, but Jeannie had been too wound up to hold. Instead, she urged him that marriage wasn't necessary. She told him that she only wanted to be with him. She didn't need to be married to him. She just wanted to know that he was hers.
But Tony wouldn't hear of it. He told her then, during that night that lasted forever, that he had already planned on moving toward marriage. He told her how he couldn't live without her. How much just being with her meant. How he knew he had been cheating the both of them out of happiness by his stubbornness. How she meant absolutely everything to him and he wouldn't settle for a half-life anymore.
They talked, during that endless night, about how their lives would change. They talked about how she should try to act when she met the other people in his life. They acknowledged the fact that it might not work. They realized that they might be discovered and that they might have to move and start all over again. But they also told each other that those were risks they were willing to take.
And it hadn't been just talk.
They had faced those risks, time and time again since their engagement, Tony recalled as he walked back into his bedroom and began to search through dresser drawers for his wife. There were points during the three months from the time he got her back until she finally became his wife two weeks ago that Tony didn't think they'd ever be able to make it. When Amanda Bellows had been changed by Jeannie's beauty cream, Tony wondered how they would ever get out of the situation. But those four years of living with Jeannie had taught him to think on his feet, and luckily he had been well prepared.
The weirdest change in their lives was how Roger never seemed to be on one side anymore. One moment he was helping Tony escape Cuban capture, the next he was throwing him a bachelor party against his will, or helping the Bellows keep him out of his home when Helasco was busy destroying it. But, no matter what, Roger was always there for him, even down to helping them avoid, as best they could, the fiasco that Jeannie couldn't be photographed.
Yes, there had been some close calls since he had announced their engagement. And they never failed to make him nervous. But Tony also faced each new challenge with the knowledge that whatever happened was secondary; what was most important to him was that he had Jeannie. So it was those moments that he worried about being kept from her that worried him the most.
He had been especially anxious when the problem with Jeannie's blood came up. Without a blood test, they weren't going to be allowed to get married, and with everything they had gone through to get to that point, Tony was not willing to just go back to normal. He had been impressed, then, when Jeannie started to help get them out of these situations. She had learned, quickly, what was acceptable and what wasn't. She no longer had to be told exactly what to do. Instead, she acted on her own, and it made their transition that much easier.
No, the single most infuriating incident had been the fiasco with her uncles. Tony had been worried about Jeannie that night when she tried to show him off in the best light. He had been looking forward to a quiet evening in front of the fire, but instead she pulled him every which way, from encouraging him to read a book, to turning Moby Dick into a joke book. Tony did his best to just go along with her, but it hadn't stopped him from contemplating it as he laid in bed that night. The next day, when he found out what was really going on, he was livid. He didn't mind putting up with Jeannie's family, but when they started to interfere with his work, when they had the gall to decide whether or not he could marry Jeannie, Tony couldn't stand it.
He loved Jeannie, and he wasn't going to let anything stand between them. Not his own foolish pride, not his career, and certainly not her family. They loved each other, and that was enough.
Luckily, at the end of the whole affair, Tony just pretended to be grateful they allowed him to marry her. Which he did, amidst havoc and confusion, a week later.
Their wedding had been anything but perfect, however. With all the problems with the photographers, Tony felt it was a miracle to have just gotten the words "I do" out of both of their mouths. The reception afterword had been a trial as well. Just moments after making Jeannie his wife, he had to release her arm from his and exchange it for the arm of the dummy to satisfy the photographers. And then, after a quick moment with Jeannie as they went home, he had to turn right back around to go after the film Dr. Bellows was having developed.
Tony's thoughts turned to his wedding night as he began to search under their bed and remembered that when he was finally able to return home to his new bride, he found the time apart had done them both good. He had entered the house to find Jeannie casually dressed in slacks and a loose shirt, and she approached him, ready to ease away the tension of the day.
When he stopped to think of that night, Tony was always impressed with how quickly Jeannie had adjusted to the role of loving, dutiful wife. It was just another on the list of many things he had come to admire about her.
As a result, Tony didn't have to worry about lessening Jeannie's anxieties over their wedding night. Thankfully, they simply fell into each other's arms after enjoying the film of their wedding.
One thing that always shocked him was how at home they felt in each other's arms. There had been no awkwardness that night. Or any night since.
Not that they had the chance to spend much time together since their marriage. Because it had been such a surprise, because it was so unplanned, it was impossible for Tony to get any time off for a honeymoon. So they got married on a Saturday and he had to go back to work Monday morning. Worse than that had been when the news came a week ago that he would have to leave town for three days. Last night had been his homecoming, and he was sincerely glad that Jeannie had opted out of the party at the Bellows'.
Now, however, Tony was worried that he might not see his wife for the remainder of the evening.
"Jeannie, darling," he began, throwing his hands in the air, "I'm sorry. I shouldn't have yelled at you. I should have believed you. Please forgive me, darling," he begged softly. But there was no answer, and Jeannie was nowhere to be found. So he hurried to the door, no longer quite so worried about what the Bellows' thought. He flung open the door and walked out into the hall.
He looked around for Jeannie but didn't see any sign of her, so he directed his attention to the stairs off to his right. "Jeannie, if you're up there, will you please come down? I'm sorry," he called to her softly. He took a breath to say more but was startled by the doorbell so he walked over to the door and opened it.
When he saw Biff standing before him he said as nonchalantly as possible, "Oh, hi, Biff. I thought you'd gone."
"Uh, Tony," Biff began, but caught himself and started again saying, "I mean Major Nelson, I want to talk to you."
Tony sighed and said, "Can it wait just a second? I've got to talk to my wife." He looked back toward the stairs when Biff said:
"Well that's what I wanna talk to you about. You see, uh, Jeannie and I–"
"Don't say it!" Dr. Bellows called and he and his wife came swooping in and pushed Biff into the living room, never allowing him to finish what he had been saying.
Tony was shocked. As if he hadn't been confused enough throughout this evening, this just added to the confusion.
"Hey!" he began as his guests left him standing in the doorway. "You all have been acting cock-eyed all– Will someone please tell me what's going on around here?"
Then, from the stairway Tony heard, "Psst!" He turned to look and saw Jeannie standing there at the base of the stairs. "Master, I am sorry, too," she said softly, looking ashamed and embarrassed.
Tony sighed in relief, glad she was ready to forgive him and glad she had come back. "Come down!" he whispered. She nodded, and started for him, but when Roger started calling that he had found her and came running into the living room, dragging someone who looked suspiciously like Jeannie, Tony waved her off.
Together, Tony and Jeannie watched as her sister's plot unfolded before them. She and Biff approached him and told him she was leaving him, and Tony responded by putting her in the closet. Thankfully, Jeannie thought quickly and saved them from the situation. Later, after the Biff and the Bellows left, Roger stayed for a quick dinner and soon left the two of them alone once more. Jeannie blinked her sister home to her mother and then Tony pulled her to sit down with him on the couch, snuggled up in his embrace.
"I'm sorry, Jeannie," he said after she had settled into him. "I should have believed you."
She looked up at him and replied, "My sister was very mean, Master, and I am sorry, too. But I would never lie to you. Or pop out in front of your guests."
"Oh, Jeannie," he sighed and brushed aside the bangs from her forehead. "I shouldn't have said that. They're your guests, too. And I know you wouldn't lie to me, or pop out in front of them." He placed a kiss on the top of her head and said, "I trust you, Jeannie. I know you'll always do what's best for us."
She smiled then, and pressed her lips to his. When they parted, Tony broke the silence saying, "Will you forgive me, Jeannie?"
"There is nothing to forgive," she answered and kissed him again. "I love you, Anthony," she said softly when they broke off some time later.
"I love you, Jeannie," Tony replied. He was thankful in that moment, that he finally had Jeannie, totally and completely. Together, they would build a life, come what may.
And that was what mattered most.
A/N: Yes, I did reference one of my previous stories. Oh, and I'd love a review.