ok this just got out of hand so i’m posting the scene at it’s current completion point *throws hands up*
did i mention the bar was parker, hardison, and eliot’s?
previously on tiberius
inspired by pixieknight10805’s post here
Can I pick you up Thursday? Steve texts on Tuesday and Tony blushes in an investors meeting and gets kicked in the ankle by Pepper.
Tony doesn’t get why Steve wants to pick him up when it makes more sense for him to drive out to Brooklyn and save Steve the trip, but he also really wants it for reasons he won’t let himself think about.
So when Pepper’s busy talking, he texts back, Only if you wear the jacket again.
Done, Steve replies an instant later and Tony has to cover his grin with his hand.
The pointed look he gets from Pepper says he doesn’t do so well, but he can’t bring himself to care.
Bucky can’t wait to meet you, he gets on Wednesday at lunch. It kicks his nerves into high gear and he ends up abandoning his grilled cheese. He’s got butterflies, like a little kid, Jesus. He hasn’t been this nervous to meet someone in longer than he can remember. Fortunately, Rhodey calls and distracts him, asking about what he’s up to this week.
There’s no reason not to, and normally he would, but for some reason Tony keeps his plans for tomorrow to himself. If he had to guess, he’d say Rhodey would approve.
It definitely doesn’t have anything to do with the fact that mentioning it to someone outside the fantasy might break the spell.
Thursday night he changes three times before settling for a t-shirt and some dark jeans with his leather jacket. What the hell does it matter, they’re just clothes.
This time he makes it out to the curb before Steve arrives though, so he gets to stare his fill while Steve guides the bike right up to him. “Hi,” he says, not even giving Steve the time to do more than get his feet on the ground before he’s climbing on the back, cramming the helmet down over his head. He hears Steve laugh and feels chagrined for about a second before Steve twists the throttle and the bike roars beneath them. Tony’s hands grip tight around Steve’s muscled waist and he thanks whoever’s out there for whatever it is he did that got him here.
Steve tugs off his helmet and smiles up at Tony when they get to the bar, blue eyes crinkled, and for the millionth time Tony thinks, shit, those eyes. “It’s good to see you, Tony,” he says warmly.
Heat crawls up out from under Tony’s collar and he nods, ducking his head. “Yeah, it’s good to see you, too. I, uh, I’ve been looking forward to this all week,” he admits and is lifting the boot to kick himself in the ass when he glances up and sees Steve’s beaming smile.
He gets up off the bike and says, voice gone soft, “I’m glad.”
Tony’s heart rabbits around in his chest so fast he feels breathless. “I. Yeah,” he croaks.
Then Steve turns to clip his helmet to the bike and he can breathe again. Oh god, what’s he gotten himself into?
Inside, Thor, Sam, and Clint are already at the table, arguing in good-natured, but loud, voices.
“Hey guys,” Steve says, sliding into a chair.
“Steve, tell him,” Clint says immediately. “Tell him he’s bonkers.”
“He’s the one who’s bonkers,” Sam says.
Thor shakes his head, obviously amused by both of them.
“Wheat beers,” Clint presses, “nasty as fuck or tolerable when drunk enough?”
“Oh no,” Steve says, holding his hands up. “Leave me outta this. If Eliot hears—”
“Oh, Eliot’s heard,” a voice growls from behind them and Tony turns to see the long-haired bartender scowling at them and violently wiping a glass clean. “You two don’t even deserve to drink it. Hops and wheat beers both have their places, if you can’t see the damn difference and appreciate it maybe you need to find yourselves a new bar to drink at, huh?”
Clint’s eyes go wide. “I didn’t mean it. Not a word. Totally talking out my ass. Wheat beer’s great. I’ll have one right now, in fact.”
Someone else sighs loudly from the back of the bar. It turns out to be a tall, thin black man who’s midway through an eyeroll. “Did someone start talking shit about the beer again? There is a sign,” he says, and points to the center of the bar, where there is in fact a folded paper card that reads in elegantly typeset letters: DO NOT TALK SHIT ABOUT BEER. THE BARTENDER IS ORNERY.
It’s like a circus in here.
Tony loves it.
He’s even more delighted when the bartender comes out from behind the bar and sets a pint of beer with the perfect amount of head down in front of Clint with a bang and a scowl. Then he sets down a small tray of cheese chunks slightly less violently and jabs a finger at it. “Bacon gouda. Eat it. Drink the beer. Then maybe, maybe I’ll let your dumb ass stay.”
Tony laughs when Clint immediately pops a chunk in his mouth and swallows a mouthful out of the glass. He looks up at the bartender. “Do you usually threaten your customers?”
“Only all the time,” the black guy says and curls a hand lightly around the bartender’s elbow. “Eliot, babe, come on. We’ve talked about this, man.”
“He was talking shit about wheat beer! The wheat beer you make, because I know he doesn’t go and buy it at the store! I ain’t gonna let that slide!”
The other man looks torn between abject adoration and exasperation. “That's— I’m very flattered. That’s sweet. You are sweet. The sweetest. In fact, can I see you in the back. Right now. Yes, right now.”
The bartender smacks his hand away, but he’s flushing and doing as he’s been asked. “Don’t call me sweet, Hardison. I am not sweet. I’m salty. I’m very fuckin’ salty, okay, are you listening to me?”
The door to the back swings shut behind them, muffling their voices and Thor reaches across the table and smacks Clint with the back of his hand. “Look at what you’ve done. You very nearly got us ejected.”
“Ow,” Clint says and then stares sullenly at his beer and the plate of cheese. “This is really good, dammit.”
The swinging door pops open and the bartender sticks his head out, lips swollen and red. “You’re damn right it is!” he snaps, and then he’s dragged back behind the doors.
“You should know better,” Steve says, giving Clint a judgmental look.
Tony laughs so hard he starts wheezing.
WHAT AM I EVEN DOING WITH THIS FIC.