Tony wandered around the penthouse occasionally sipping from a tumbler of Scotch that he held loosely in one hand. He had refilled it several times since waking from another nightmare, but had for once remained strangely sober.

He stopped in front of the large window that overlooked Manhattan. The city was laid out below him.

He shivered a bit as he thought back on how it was the same window that Loki had chosen to toss him out of months before.

He rested his forehead against the cold glass and stared out into the night getting lost in his morbid thoughts.

Sleep was being an elusive bitch. His fellow Avengers with the help of Jarvis had band him from his lab, so he couldn't lose himself in science until he passed out from sheer exhaustion.

He wanted to rage at the injustice of it, but didn't have the energy to throw a truly epic hissy fit. He needed at least eight hours of uninterrupted sleep before he could be considered functioning normally.

He polished off the tumbler. Without a thought, he whirled around and threw it across the room where it shattered against the wall.

"Damn!" Clint exclaimed as he stepped from the elevator being careful to avoid the small pile of glass. "You feel better?"

"Not really," Tony answered sourly.

"You do realize that breaking dishes is up there on the top ten list of cliché things to do when one gets dumped?"

"So, I've been told," Tony said with a shrug and turned back toward the window.

"Have you gotten any sleep?" Clint hazarded as he walked further into the room. He knew how unpredictable Tony could be when he was battling his demons.

"Does it look like it?" Tony countered not bothering to look at Clint. He didn't need to see the sympathy and understanding in the other man's eyes.

"I've seen you look worse."

Tony snorted. He looked down at the stained white t-shirt and ratty gray sweats he had thrown on after his shower. "Yeah, being shocked back to life by a green rage monster doesn't do much for one's looks." He walked over and settled on the light grey couch.

Clint softly laughed. He walked over to the bar and poured himself a drink from the bottle that Tony had left out.

"Why are you here? Did you get the short straw again?"

Clint rolled his eyes. "Would you believe that I'm genuinely concerned about you?"

"That's nice," Tony said bitterly. "I don't know why you should be since nobody else in my life is."

Clint softly sighed. He could try and reason with the older man, but he knew he wouldn't get through to the little boy that had been neglected by a famous father. He poured Tony a drink and handed it to him before he settled on the couch next to him.

Tony sipped at it becoming lost in his thoughts once again.

Clint rested a hand on Tony's knee and gave it a gentle squeeze. "It's alright to miss her."

"I do," Tony sighed. "And, I don't want to."

"I know."

"It's not like I was in love with her or anything."

"Quit lying to yourself, Tony."

"Okay," Tony said giving in. "I love her, but I'm not in love with her."

"Nor is she with you," Clint theorized. He took another sip from his drink savoring the Scotch wanting to be proven wrong. He wanted Tony and Pepper to succeed. In fact, he needed them to succeed, so he could say if they can make it, then I can make it with somebody.

"You would be one hundred percent correct."

"So you've been acting like an insufferable ass for days now because your pride was bruised instead of your heart being broken?" Clint finished his drink and set the glass on the end table.

Tony thought about making a smart ass remark, but his heart wasn't into it. He didn't want to push Clint away and that kind of scared him. "Yes," he simply said. "I guess I'm as socially inept as the tabloids claim."

Clint moved from the couch to the coffee table so that he could face Tony. He took the empty glass from Tony and set it aside, so he could catch hold of both of Tony's hands. "You aren't socially inept," he softly said. "You just don't have time for bullshit."

"No need to sugar coat the truth, Legolas," Tony scoffed. He tried to pull his hands out of Clint's, but the archer held on tighter.

"Have I been known for sugar coating the truth?" Clint countered with a wry grin.


"Then believe me when I say that you're a pretty good guy."

"Just pretty good?"

"I'm not stroking your ego, Tony."

"I can think of other things that I might like you to stroke."

Clint rolled his eyes and sighed. "I'm trying to be serious."

"I know," Tony replied before he leaned forward to gently kiss Clint, but was stopped by the blond's hand on his shoulder.

"I'm not a one night stand nor will I let you use me to sooth your bruised pride."

"It's your show."

"Do you mean that?"

"Yes," Tony softly said. Yes, I do. I just don't want to be alone anymore."

Clint moved his hand from Tony's shoulder so that he was cupping the brunette's jaw. "You've never been alone," he whispered before leaning in and softly kissing Tony.

Tony allowed Clint to control the kiss for once not needing to dominate a situation, which he found surprising.

Clint cautiously ended the kiss. "That wasn't so bad."

"I've never received any complaints."

Clint chuckled. "Let's take this something place a little more comfortable."

"That's usually my line," Tony said as he stood up and held out his hand.

Clint grasped Tony's hand and allowed the other man to pull him to his feet. "Shut up, Tony."

Tony smirked, but wisely kept his mouth shut as he led Clint toward his bedroom.