Ah, I forgot to give you a prompt, didn't I? Can I have something where Sam, Steve and Bucky all get deaged together shortly post CACW and Team Iron Man has to deal with their prepubescent shenanigans and their feelings? Like 10-12 years old and they're all little shits. Especially Steve to Tony after Tony guesses that Steve is 8, which is a mortal insult when you are 11.
I am so sorry for the lateness of this! I meant to answer it last weekend but I was still in Sinus Haze at that point. :D I had a lot of fun with this one!
“They were supposed to be here for the signing of the revised accords,” Tony said.
“And Barnes was supposed to turn himself in to SHIELD,” Rhodey added.
T'Challa and Tony both looked at him, Tony’s eyebrows rising.
“What? He killed your parents, I don’t get to be mad about that?” Rhodey asked.
“Sure, but if you’re as mad as I was you also get to be in some pretty intense therapy for like a year,” Tony said, turning back to the glass window, which looked in on three children in the holding room at the Avengers compound.
“We came through an electrical storm in the jet on the way here,” T'Challa said. “When we came out of it…” he gestured at the children. Steve, an incredibly tiny, frail child, was wrapped in a blanket. They’d found clothing that would more or less fit Sam and Bucky, who looked to be on the verge of puberty, but Steve was stuck in an oversized shirt and a blanket he’d tied around his toast-rack chest like a sarong.
“You know how I know this is magic and not science?” Tony asked.
“Wanda wasn’t affected?” Rhodey ventured.
“Neither was I,” T'Challa pointed out. “We think because I was in the shielded cockpit.”
“No, I know this is magic because whoever did this to him gave him a teeny tiny arm,” Tony said, pointing at Bucky’s child-sized prosthetic, as menacing in its own way as the real adult thing.
“I think I can fix it,” Wanda said. Her eyes were glowing red, and the air was sort of dancing around her. Tony wondered how much she’d been practicing since she’d arrived in Wakanda. “But I’m worried about going in there alone.”
“For them or for you?” Tony asked, and she looked – startled, like she’d forgotten he could care about people. That was going to sting for a while.
“Both. There are three of them, one of whom has a metal arm,” she said. “And I need someone to take me down if I lose it, which…is usually Steve’s job.”
“I can go,” Tony said. “The repulsors bracelets are subtle, won’t freak the kids out. And I can distract them if you want to work on them one at a time.”
“Do you have any experience with children at all?” Rhodey asked.
“I’ll have you know I dealt very handily with the last twelve-year-old I knew,” Tony replied loftily.
Wanda was sitting on the floor, trying to lure Sam away from the smartphone he was playing with, when she heard Steve yell: “I’m not eight!”
“Hey, calm down, I was guessing,” Tony said, and Wanda looked over just in time to see Steve stand up, his terrifyingly thin little hands balled into fists. Tony, who was crouched down to talk to him and Bucky (probably mostly Steve; she couldn’t imagine Tony didn’t still have some…anger issues surrounding Bucky), held up his hands.
“I’m eleven! Just because I’m little doesn’t mean I’m a baby!” Steve insisted. Bucky was watching them both warily.
“Nobody’s saying you’re a baby,” Tony replied soothingly. “But – ”
“Don’t talk to me like I am one!” Steve said, and Wanda flinched as he swung his arm. He was going to break his hand on Tony’s face –
She watched, awestruck, as Tony reacted. He’d had all his weight on the balls of his feet, legs bent, body balanced over his knees; when Steve’s fist connected (barely) he threw himself backwards, sprawling and then somersaulting – gracelessly – and collapsing spreadeagled on the ground. Steve looked at his own fist, wonderingly.
“He’s down! Get ‘im!” Bucky yelled, the first words he’d said, and he sprang for Tony, landing hard on his chest. Tony let out a whuff, then curled on one side as Steve started ineffectually kicking him. Sam ran over to help Bucky pin Tony down, and Wanda got up to make sure they weren’t hurting him, but Tony was grinning as he hid his face and curled up his body against Steve’s snowflake-like blows.
Eventually Steve flopped down with the others, breathlessly giving up his assault, and Tony lay still underneath the three boys, grinning up at Wanda as she stood over them.
“Okay, you vicious little weasels,” he said, and Wanda waited for all three boys to take offense, but none of them bothered. “You are meant to be big grown adult males who could actually break my bones. Wanda needs to fix you up, put you back the way you were.”
He sat up, dislodging Sam, and then kicked his legs gently to shove Bucky off as well. Bucky clung on grimly with his metal hand around Tony’s ankle, but most of him slithered away.
“Do I really grow up big?” Steve asked, and Tony pulled him into the gentlest of headlocks, one huge palm resting on Steve’s strawlike hair.
“Bigger than everyone else,” he assured him.
“Bigger than BUCKY?”
Tony leaned over and whispered in his ear, “Even Sam grows up bigger than Bucky.”
“That’s a lie!” Bucky insisted, getting to his feet. “Make me grow up first!” he insisted to Wanda. “So I can prove it!”
“No, me first!” Steve yelled, which meant Sam insisted too, and suddenly instead of three sullen little shits refusing to obey her, she had three eager little boys all jostling to be first.
“You did this,” she said to Tony, who shrugged and rubbed at his ankle, which was starting to show a bruise where Bucky had clung to it.
“I don’t know a ton about kids but I know a lot about managing humans,” he replied.