A/N: I felt that Tony deserved an apology from Steve for what Steve said about Tony only fighting for himself and "I know guys with none of that worth ten of you." Also, while I don't ship these two together, I'm a huge fan of them being best friends. Drop a review if you like it!
"I was wrong."
Tony looked up, surprised to see none other than Captain America standing in the doorway, looking dignified as always, even out of the uniform.
"Sorry?" Tony replied. A serious expression on his face, Steve walked into the room, halting only a few feet away from the genius.
"I misjudged you," he admitted. "I thought that you were just some self-centered guy who loved to show off with his fancy toys. You proved me wrong. What you did-"
"Anyone else would've done it, Captain," interrupted Tony, turning back to his work. He appreciated seeing others humbling themselves, especially the old man who—though Tony did truly consider him a friend—often had a stick up his butt, but he did not care to let this conversation turn into some sort of emotional show of gratitude.
"No. They wouldn't have. It takes a rare kind of man to willingly sacrifice himself like that. You really showed your mettle, Stark."
"Yeah, iron, didn't ya know?" Tony joked. Steve cracked a small lopsided smile.
"You know what I meant," he returned. Seeing the still-serious look on the Captain's face made Tony swallow his humor.
"Yeah, well… I'm just glad that the return trip wasn't too bumpy. If that portal had closed on me, or if, you know, I'd crashed into the ground instead of the Hulk, I'm sure my whole day would've been ruined as a result."
"Even worse, you never would have gotten to try shawarma," added Steve, the beginnings of a grin quirking its way onto his lips. Tony gaped amazedly at the world's first superhero.
"Was that a joke, soldier? I was beginning to think jokes didn't exist before the 1950s!"
"The modern age must finally be rubbing off on me."
"Not if those tasteless plaid shirts you're still wearing are anything to go by," snorted Tony. Steve looked down at his clothes, brow creased.
"Why, what's wrong with plaid?" he asked confusedly.
"Uh, you mean besides the fact that you look like a lumberjack?"
"Please, if you're just back from chopping logs all day, take a shower before you get sweat all over my pretty tower, you blue-collar worker you."
"You are subscribing to ridiculous stereotypes, Stark."
"Or, if you prefer, you can handle my log," teased Tony. A look of horror immediately crossed Steve's face, and he stood rendered speechless.
"My goodness, the modern age really has rubbed off on you," Tony grinned excitedly. "Not too long ago, it would've taken you minutes to decipherthat lovely little remark, if at all. Or have you just been hiding a dirty mind from us all this time?"
"No, I assure you that that," said Steve, still looking pained, "is all due to your company, I'm afraid."
"No need to be afraid, Rogers. The gutters really aren't such a bad place for your mind to live. Plenty of room, air, and company, and there's always water available—well, if you're willing to overlook one or two health regulations that-"
"Enough." Steve's tone was exasperated, but fond. "We've gotten off track. I came down here because I wanted to apologize for making unjust assumptions about you. They turned out to be very wrong, and I was wrong to make them in the first place."
Returning to a serious tone, Tony nodded solemnly for a few seconds.
"Apology accepted, Captain Capsicle," he returned with a playful smile. "I probably, may have, jumped to some conclusions myself. About you. I tell ya, I thought my dad was nuts for making such a fuss over a man locked away in ice for seventy years." Tony locked eyes with Steve, looking much more sincere than usual. "I get it now."
A genuine smile grew on Steve's face, one that Tony returned. Their mutual respect for each other became a firm foundation for one of the fiercest friendships of the 21st century.