Title: In Longhand
Author: Del Rion
Fandom: Iron Man (MCU)
Genre: Romance, fluff
Rating: K+ / FRC
Characters: J.A.R.V.I.S., Pepper Potts, Tony Stark (Iron Man). Implied presence of Tony's bots (DUM-E and U).
Summary: Tony's in a mood to confess his love to Pepper – in writing. J.A.R.V.I.S. does his best to edit Tony's writing.
Complete. Part of the "Genius, AI & Bots" series.
Written for: My card on Love Bingo's Round 3 (square: "Love letter")
Warnings: Mild swearing and really bad penmanship.
Disclaimer: Iron Man and Marvel Cinematic Universe, including characters and everything else, belong to Marvel, Marvel Studios, Jon Favreau, Shane Black, Paramount Pictures and Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures. In short: I own nothing; this is pure fiction created to entertain likeminded fans for no profit whatsoever.
Feedback: Very welcome.
About In Longhand: It is extremely hard to write a letter in your favorite character's voice, even when it's supposed to be outrageously, ridiculously, distastefully over-the-top romantic. Most likely this is a fairly botched attempt, but I hope someone enjoys the effort for comedy!
Story and status: Below you see the writing process of the story. If there is no text after the title, then it is finished and checked. Possible updates shall be marked after the title.
. . .
Written for my card on Love Bingo's Round 3. Square: "Love letter".
readers: Since the site doesn't allow the use strike through, the two instances where this is used in Tony's letter are marked - - -like this- - -. Sorry for the inconvenience.
"Sir, what is the purpose of this exercise?"
"It's called being a romantic. Check it out sometime."
"With all due respect, its subtleties may be wasted on me."
"Aw, do you need me to build you a girlfriend?"
"Honestly, that would border on incest, sir."
"A simple 'no' would have sufficed."
"You never write letters, to anyone. Why is this a special occasion?"
"It's not; that's what makes it special."
"May I make an observation?"
"It may be wise to rephrase that line about her 'shapely legs'."
"Everyone's a critic."
Pepper receives multiple letters each day. Even with the world gearing towards digital interaction, physical notes and memos are still very much present. That is why one more letter doesn't catch her attention, especially when it's not marked as important.
She opens it with a practiced move, drawing out and unfolding the paper to see what it is about.
The paper has a stain running across it, almost from corner to corner. It looks like some kind of tire track, too small to be from a car, too wide for a bicycle. The whole note is handwritten in a semi-neat scrawl which gets a bit messier in places, with several words crossed out and additional notes written all over.
A smile tugs at her lips and Pepper settles down to read:
I hope this letter reaches you in good spirits.
To quote Audrey Hepburn: "The best thing to hold onto in life is each other".
With that in mind, I feel myself longing for your gentle, petite hands, and - - -shapely legs- - -. (J informed me this could be considered inappropriate. I apologize.)
Even though at this present moment there are miles between us, you are but a phone call away. I dream of seeing your face and bathing in - - -the nectar of- - - your voice (that got a little creepy), but I shall respect your work ethic and suffer in my loneliness instead of bothering you during your most sacred hours.
My life without you is empty; a lonely trek through a lifeless desert.
(Dummy just ran over the paper. I think it was on purpose. Jerk.)
I obviously cannot put my feelings for you into words, on paper. Superlatives are not enough. They pale in comparison to… (J is yet again pointing out the ineffectiveness of my romantic intentions behind this letter. He's calling me ostentatious and melodramatic. Jackass. His argument is invalid because he confessed earlier that romance isn't his thing.)
(Now he claims he could construct the ultimate love letter, but I'm telling you, nothing can compare to the authentic feelings in a human heart.)
I think I really just insulted my AI and also forgot what I was writing you about.
It may have been a little over-the-top.
I won't apologize for that.
I shall finish in Mr. George Jean Nathan's words: "A man reserves his true and deepest love not for the species of woman in whose company he finds himself electrified and enkindled, but for that one in whose company he may feel tenderly drowsy."
(And no, I'm not drunk, in case you were wondering. You're probably not. I just felt like putting that here, in writing. Also, I'm going to mail this, because I just wrote it. And because I love you and this is concrete proof of that.)