Tony and Pepper ran out of the lab and into the bright Saturday sunlight, running away from Rhodey, laughing intensely at the prank they had just pulled on their friend. They ran out and up the slope in front of the temple to the flat ground above. Once they got up, they slowed to a stop and fell to the ground, tired from laughing and running at the same time. They could hear Rhodey's annoyed grunts echoing through the temple. They rolled over on the ground, not caring that the dirt was ruining their clothes.
Tony laid on his back and looked to his side to see Pepper laying out, looking up to the sky as she laid on her back as well, with a wide smile on her face. Once his eyes settled on hers, his laughter died and only his smile remained. When he looked into her eyes he felt something strange wash over him; something he couldn't put a name to. It made him feel light as air, happy as can be. But most of all it made him want to move in closer and kiss her. The word 'friends' seemed too little a word to describe their relationship.
He wanted to say something to her, but he realized that upon looking at her all words had escaped his mind. He couldn't think of anything to say, and he felt his cheeks growing warmer as the silence remained. Pepper's smile remained, making her seem radiant and happy and beautiful. The sun shone down on the barren landscape, illuminating her smile even more and brightening the sparkle in her eyes. Tony's smile faded as he grew annoyed with himself.
What's wrong with you? Talk to her, idiot!
Tony swallowed nervously before continuing to speak.
"Pepper, I-" He began, only to be interrupted by a dripping wet Rhodey standing over them.
"You two are going to pay for this!" He said deviously. Tony's blush returning, he grabbed Pepper's hand and quickly stood and ran from their revenge-stricken friend, their laughter returning once more. When they reached town, Tony realized they were still holding hands. But he didn't bother to let go. He never wanted to let go. They were having too much fun, and in that moment all their worries had seemed to vanish. He couldn't think of a thing in the world that mattered then.
Tony pulled them into an alley and leaned against the wall, catching his breath. They both had wide smiles on their faces, and the adrenaline was pumping heavily. Tony looked into Pepper's eyes, and suddenly his earlier thoughts came flooding back into his mind.
"Pep..." He said, breathing heavily from running so far.
"I love you." He finished, the smile still sitting on his cheeks. Pepper's smile grew wider yet. Before she could say anything, Tony placed a hand on her cheek. Pepper placed her hand over his. Tony moved in closer to her and brushed his lips over hers. The motion turned into a passionate kiss that made Tony's mind and heart race.
He thought of all the times he had overlooked the fact that it was obvious that he had feelings for her, or vice versa. He realized that this was something he should've done a long time ago. It was probably two years overdue, and he realized he'd been a huge idiot.
They parted for air, breathing heavily to catch their breaths once more.
"Tony, I love you too. I-I mean, I have for a long time, but I was always too scared to do anything about it I guess, but now I don't have anything to worry about, and-" Pepper babbled, only to be interrupted by Tony placing a finger over her lips.
"Pep, I get it. Actually, I got it when you didn't push me away a moment ago." Tony said with his trademark playboy smile. Pepper smiled, leaning against the wall of the alley. She let out a deep, happy sigh.
"This has been an interesting day..."
Now, Rhodey wasn't stupid. Sure, his friends had pulled a middle school prank on him and placed a bucket of water above a door frame that he walked through, resulting in it spilling all over him when it fell, and he had been angry at first, but he knew the two had been getting very close lately and he knew that letting the two run away together would give them just the moment they needed. He knew to give them space once he caught them lying beside each other outside the lab. He'd played along with his anger just to keep them amused. So he'd pretended to chase them, but eventually gave up and slowed to a walk and caught a cab home.
Once he got home, he sat down on the living room couch and picked up a book.
After peeking out into the street, Tony concluded that Rhodey was nowhere in sight. The two walked out of the alley and began their walk back to the Rhodes residence. On their way, however, Tony caught sight of a small downtown diner. He realized that night was falling fast.
"Hey, let's stop for dinner. For a first date. It'll be fun." Tony suggested.
"Is that your way of asking a girl on a date?" Pepper asked teasingly.
"Fine. Would you, Pepper, like to accompany me to dinner in this diner?" He asked, holding out his hand for her to take. Pepper smiled and took it.
"Why, I would love to." She responded. The two walked into the diner and sat down to order a quick dinner.
"So, Miss Potts, tell me about yourself." Tony asked fancily. Pepper giggled in amusement.
"Well, I'm eighteen, and finishing high school at the Tomorrow Academy...my two best friends are wicked obsessed with being Iron Man and War Machine..." Pepper explained. As she continued, she tousled Tony's hair a bit. "And I'm in love with this goofy guy with perfectly messy brown hair and blue eyes..." She finished. Tony's smile faded.
"Who?" He asked, obliviously.
"You, stupid!" She said, slapping his arm lightly. He smiled goofily in relief.
"Oh." He chuckled.
"Enough about me, tell me about yourself." She said with a smile.
"Well, I'm eighteen too, and I'm about to transition from high school to working at my dad's company 'cause I'm a genius. But most importantly, I'm in love with you." He explained, enjoying the playfulness of pretending they were total strangers on a first date.
"Wow, you like to toot your own horn don't you?" She said teasingly. Tony shrugged.
"Well when you got it, why not." He said happily. She slapped his arm playfully. They quieted down as their food came and sat in a comfortable silence as they ate. They talked about several topics while eating, and would've sat there talking forever if they could.
Little more than forty minutes later, the two had finished eating and were ready to head out.
"I'm really glad we did this. I had fun." Pepper said as Tony picked up the tab. (He had insisted on it.) Ever since his dad had acquired Stark International, he had been remembering how good it was to be rich.
"Me too...look, Pep, I'm sorry I didn't realize my feelings sooner. I-I feel like an idiot now..." Tony explained as the two walked out of the diner and back towards home.
"Tony, it's okay. Not everyone figures these things out so easily. Besides, when you're Iron Man and at the head of a huge business, who has time for a relationship?"
"Pep, I'll always have time for you. No matter what happens. I don't think I can imagine my life without you." Tony responded, taking her hand in his. Pepper smiled. Their conversation returned to the humor of the prank they'd played earlier. But the thought running through both minds in that moment was how lucky they felt to have someone as wonderful as each other.
Little more than an hour after Rhodey got home, Tony and Pepper walked through the front door, smiles on both their faces and hands intertwined. Rhodey chuckled to himself. He knew he wasn't the one who'd been tricked today.
So this story would be ten times more amazing if you listened to 'We'll Be A Dream' by We The Kings ft. Demi Lovato...but that's just a strong suggestion. Cuz I mean, this is adorable on its own, but with the song its just mind-blowingly adorable. Cuz I got the idea for this oneshot from the song. I don't think the song lasts as long as the one-shot though, but that's okay cuz I don't think the ending needs the song anyways...welll, I suppose I should get to updating Blame, shouldn't I? It's been a little bit too long...yeah, sorry. Review?