Tony quickly dressed and drove his Audi down the road with his girls in the back seat. When he arrived at Stark Industry, there were reporters everywhere. Everyone was flashing bright lights and shoving microphones at his car. He quickly went around the building and parked. He got out and carried both girls in and when he reached the top floor, he bolted into Pepper's office. (They gave up their combined office about two months ago because Pepper needed 'space' to work.)
Pepper turned and lit up like a Christmas tree. "Well, Hi!"
He did not want to ruin this mood but he had too. "Hey, Beautiful."
Tony set the girls down and hugged her tight.
"Don't you just love their little outfits?" Pepper leaned down and kissed each twin on the cheek. "Adorable."
"Yeah. Um Pep, we need to talk." Tony said uncomfortably.
Pepper stood up and looked at him curiously. "What do you want, Tony?"
"Nothing, it's not about me."
"I did something?" She wondered.
"No, no. It's nothing you did or could of prevented."
"Just spit it out, Tony."
He laced their hands together and looked into her eyes. "Pepper, you got a call-"
"Was it my Dad? When is he going to learn that no means no?!" She let go of his hands and huffed down into a chair.
Tony leaned on her desk and tried again. "Pepper, your mother called this morning. I'm sorry Sweetheart, but your father had a heart attack."
Pepper changed from completely angry to out right depressed. Her skin turned ghostly pale and she could barely speak. "Is he okay?" She whispered.
"He didn't make it." Tony said quietly.
She turned her chair away from him and stared out the glass window behind her.
"Pepper?" Tony walked over to her and looked into her eyes. He saw tears falling and wiped them away with his thumb. "I'm so sorry." He helps her up and hugs her.
"Don't blame yourself."
Pepper hugs him tighter and whispers, "What if not wanting to see him pushed him over the edge. I lied because I didn't want to go. What if I had of went? He would of been alive!" She yelled as more tears streamed down her face.
"Pepper, nothing could of prevented this. It's going to be okay." Tony said.
Pepper looked over Tony's shoulders at the wide awake babies. "They're never going to have a grandfather."
"No but they'll grow up just fine. Plus, you'll tell them all about him."
"That's true." Pepper let go of his and started dialing a phone number.
"Who are you calling?" Confused by her sudden change in attitude, Tony walks over and stands behind her.
"I'm calling my mother, then calling to prepare for my absence. Oh! And then calling our private jet."
Pepper was trying to keep herself busy but this was going to far. "Pep, you need to calm down. You can make the calls but don't overwhelm yourself."
"I won't, I won't." She said quickly.
Tony sat down in a huff as Pepper talked on the phone.
"Your mom is going crazy by the way. So, be good and don't be like Daddy." Tony joked with his daughters. But Instead of a smile, he got a full Tony-like tantrum.
"Oh crap! What did I say?" Tony wondered and looked at Pepper for help.
"It's 9, they're hungry. Just grab the bottles out of their bags. Why didn't you take them down to the nursery?" Pepper said as she picked up one of the dark haired beauties.
Tony went over and grabbed the bottles. He handed one to Pepper and kept one for himself. "I just thought I'd keep them close by today." He started feeding Elle and she sucked on the bottle like it was her last. "Slow down, kid. Pep, don't you ever feed them?"
"Yes, I do. They're like you though, never satisfied." Pepper smirked as she tried to forget what he had just told her.
"I'm more than satisfied when I'm with you. Remember that."
"I will." Pepper smiled as she finished feeding Emelia. "How did you cope when you found out about your parents?" Pepper said as she sat down beside him.
Elle snuggled in Tony's arms as he spoke. "Well, I had a hot redhead to help me through it." He grinned.
"How many red heads do you know?" She joked.
"Only one. Possibly two." He said seriously.
"When we have a little redheaded Pepper running around."
"You want more kids?"
"When the twins get a little older, yeah."
"Well, the possibility of getting a red haired kid is slim. The Stark gene is too strong." Pepper said as she stroked one hand through his disheveled locks.
"Very true. But what's this?" Tony pointed to a light freckle on Eliana's face.
"I never noticed that before. Fine, it's a freckle. I guess they do have some of me in them too."
"Yeah but seriously when my parents died I leaned on you. I expect you to do the same because whenever you need to talk, I'll listen."
"I know. I just can't believe he's gone." Pepper put both babies in their carriers and sat back down on the white couch. She put her arms around him and sobbed into his neck.
Tony wanted to do something but he knew she just needed time to grieve. She had done the exact same thing all those many years ago and Tony was thankful that he could be here to wipe away her fallen tears.