I own none of these characters and make no money from this. I'm only borrowing them for a little while :)
Stark Tower was silent in the darkness. The usual crazy energy that flowed through the place had been temporarily replaced by silence as the Avengers got some much needed rest. Well, most of them at least. It had just gone 3am and Natasha couldn't sleep. She was tired but for some reason her mind refused to follow her body's lead and switch off to recharge. As she tossed and turned in her huge bed her thoughts drifted to the recent change in her living arrangements. Following the battle in New York, Fury had encouraged the team to accept Stark's generous offer to let them stay. Perhaps encouraged was the wrong word, it had sounded suspiciously like an order. Natasha had been reluctant at first, she couldn't imagine Stark would be the easiest person to live with and she didn't relish the idea of encountering the Hulk over breakfast, but Clint was staying, for the time being at least, so she figured she'd give it a shot. To her surprise, it actually hadn't been too bad so far.
She had discovered early on that Stark was too busy repairing his beloved tower to be his usual pain in the ass self, most of the time at least, and had enlisted Bruce to work on the project with the promise of free rein in the lab whenever he wanted it. Natasha wasn't sure which of the two geeks was more excited by the new arrangement.
Steve and Thor had seemingly partnered up in an attempt to navigate the 21st century together. Only yesterday, Natasha had walked in the pair for them huddled over a laptop in the kitchen looking horrified yet mesmerised all at the same time. She'd left them to it, preferring not to know what had the two superheroes so enraptured. If they had taken Stark's advice, it couldn't have been anything pleasant.
She saw Pepper occasionally, typically following Stark around with a clipboard, trying to talk business. Honestly, she had no idea how the blonde hadn't succumbed to a rage blackout long before now. Love really does strange things to people.
Her thoughts turned to the final member of their merry little group, Clint. The archer had been in her thoughts a lot lately, particularly as she was almost sure he was avoiding her. Or at the very least he was trying to. She knew what the problem was. Loki. A prickle of anger ran up her spine at the thought of him. If she ever had the misfortune to encounter the power hungry little moron again, she was going to break him like a twig. Clint would never admit it, but she knew that he was still affected by his run in with the God of Mischief. Having spent many of her early years at the mercy of others, with no control of her own, she could sympathise with his plight. Her own encounter with Loki had shaken her, the way he had spoken about Clint, about the control he had over the archer. Yes, she'd break him like a twig and she'd enjoy every second of it.
Her inability to sleep irked her, Fury had given them a few weeks off to "relax" and here she was, pyjama clad atop the finest Egyptian cotton sheets money could buy (Pepper had insisted) and her mind was as active as ever. For a brief moment she considered going to the gym. She knew for sure it would be empty at this hour so she wouldn't be disturbed. Maybe a workout would completely exhaust her and she could finally get some sleep. But she thought better of it; she knew it wouldn't be that simple. Anyways, working out alone was never fun, not when she was used to sparring with Clint. As her thoughts turned to the archer, yet again, she was struck with an idea.
She pulled the door open slowly and automatically did a sweep of the hallway. It wasn't necessary, she knew, but it was second nature to her. She slipped into the hallway, pulling the door closed behind her with a soft click. His room was at the end of hallway. Her feet moved quickly but quietly along the soft carpet. JARVIS was most likely observing her late night stroll but the AI remained silent. Reaching his door, she found it unlocked. That wasn't a surprise, when you lived with superheroes there wasn't really a need to lock your doors. The door opened quietly and she stepped into the dim light of his bedroom. The archer lay asleep on his back, a crumpled sheet pulled to his waist.
She stood at the doorway for just a second, drinking in the sight of him. It was nothing new, after all she'd seen him shirtless, naked even, countless times over the years, but she saw no harm in appreciating a good thing staring you in the face. His voice startled her.
"Tasha?" His voice was thick with sleep and she tried to ignore the way her skin tingled at the sound.
"In the flesh" she replied in a whisper.
She made her way towards the bed, watching as he pulled himself up, exposing more of his toned torso as he did so.
"Are you okay?" He was more awake now, aware that she was actually standing at his bedside wearing just shorts and a vest. Most normal guys would be drooling at the sight. Clint didn't bat an eyelid.
"Couldn't sleep, thought I'd see if you were awake" she kept her voice low, didn't want JARVIS piping up, offering to make her warm milk or provide some other sleep aid.
Clint raised an eyebrow but said nothing else. He just pulled the sheet back and slid over to give her room. She crept into bed beside him, sliding her body flush against his and bringing the sheet with her. This was the closest they had been since the Loki incident.
They lay in silence for a while but she knew he was still awake when he spoke. "I hope I'm the only guy on the team you turn to when you can't sleep" She could hear the amusement in his voice and smiled to herself. She knew they were going to be okay, knew that Loki hadn't been able to break him. He was shaken sure, they both were, but they'd come through worse and had survived. As long as they had each other, they'd make it.
"Please, as if anyone lacking sleep could put up with Stark without killing him."
Clint laughed as he pulled her closer and kissed the top of head. Yeah, she thought, this was definitely a better idea than the gym.