Posted in fanfiction, pepper potts, pepperony, reader insert, tony stark

Plus Two – Chapter 14

Plus Two:  A Pepperony Fanfic

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Word Count:  
 2191

Pairing:  Pepper Potts x Tony Stark x F!Reader

Warnings:  loss of a family member, mentions of  drug and alcohol addiction

Synopsis:  Tony Stark- Genius, Billionaire, Playboy, Philanthropist, Pepper Potts, his long-serving and overworked assistant, and you, their on-again/off-again girlfriend and lead singer of the hit band, Arctic Fire.  Three very different people navigate a world of fame, addiction, betrayal, and superheroes, while they move from having a plus one to a plus two.


Chapter 14

The move to New York was completely drama-free.  You kept your place in LA, though the longer you stayed in your private little love bubble on the upper east side with Tony and Pepper, the more you considered selling it.

You were getting comfortable as a triad – each of you was figuring out your place with the others and how the relationship worked best.  You liked having breakfast with Pepper as she sent emails.  You liked taking lunch to Tony in his lab and eating it while you sat on the bench surrounded by electronic parts and tools that hadn’t been put away.  Most of all there was nothing you liked more than falling to sleep in a sex coma, your limbs all tangled together.  It felt right.  You didn’t care at all what the rest of the world thought about your unconventional relationship.  It made you happy and that was a commodity that was hard to come by.

There was something about New York that you were falling in love with too.  You’d initially moved to LA because of work – the beaches and celebrities and closeness to your agent had kept you returning.  You spent long periods in cities all over the world for work or pleasure but it had been LA that you called home.

The more time you spent in New York the more you thought it was where you were meant to be.  You spent mornings running in the park and then browsing the boutiques on the Upper East Side.  Afternoons were spent on the terrace of Pepper and Tony’s penthouse terrace, looking out over the park while you strummed on your guitar and wrote songs about finding happiness and a place that actually felt like home.  A few nights a week you’d go out into the city.  You’d see bands play at small bars or a broadway show.  When a larger band stopped on their nationwide tour, you’d get tickets and drag either Pepper or Tony along with you.  On the weekends you and Pepper might go to the farmer’s markets together.  Or you and Tony might go and see a game.  Or the three of you might just spend the whole day in the apartment and forget the rest of the world existed.

You were in love.  You were in love with Tony, you were in love with Pepper, and you were in love with New York City.

You were so caught up in that love that you forgot the rest of the world existed.  You’d learned not to search your name on the internet a long time ago, and you’d been avoiding Twitter and Instagram since you’d moved.  Taking breaks from social media during high-stress periods was something you’d learned in rehab.  Nothing was leaking into the bubble to remind you of weirdly judgemental fans and gossip columnists, jealous Tony Stark stalkers, or even mundane things like upcoming deadlines.

That was until the buzzer went off while the three of you were eating Pizza from Joe’s and sushi from Seki.  Tony got up and picked up the receiver.  “Yeah, send him up,” he said.

Pepper looked over at him quizzically.  The security in the building was good.  They knew the people who were cleared to come up, like Rhodey and Happy, and they knew the likelihood of random fans trying to get access to both you and Tony.  That meant he never called up.  You’d forgotten there was a buzzer to even be called up to.

“It’s Cap,” Tony said.

“Is it an Avengers thing?”  Pepper asked.

Tony shrugged and headed out to the elevator to meet him.

“He’s only supposed to be doing the big things,” Pepper said, her foot tapping nervously on the floor.  “If Steve’s here, and it’s not a call – it has to be a big thing.”

You rubbed her thigh.  “Maybe he was just in the area?” you suggested.  “Which – does he know about us?”

“No.  I mean, I don’t think so.  Only Rhodey and Happy do,” Pepper said.

“So I’m just a house guest,” you said, taking your hand back away.  “Got it.”

“I’m sorry, honey,” Pepper said.

You waved her off.  “It’s okay.  We’ll get there.”

Tony came into the kitchen followed by Captain Steve Rogers.  You and Pepper both stood.

“Hi, Pepper,” Steve said, kissing her cheek.  “Sorry to interrupt dinner.”

“It’s fine,” she assured him.  “We just ordered in.”

“Yeah, help yourself if you’re hungry.  Can I get you a drink?  We’re a dry house right now, but I have all kinds of juices,” Tony said.

“It’s fine.  I’m fine,” Steve said, and looked at you and offered his hand.  “Hi, I’m Steve.”

“I know,” you said, shaking his hand, and returning the introduction.

“I know,” Steve said.  “I actually have your last album.  It was really good.  Cathartic.”

“Oh wow,” you said, slightly shocked that the centenarian Tony always spoke about having a stick up his ass would have even heard your music before.  “It was pretty cathartic writing it too.”

“I’m sure,” Steve agreed.  “I draw.  Not as much these days – but I always found art was such a good way to channel your feelings.”

“Oh, it totally is,” you agreed.  “Everything just pours out of me into my music.”

Tony cleared his throat.  “Well, anyway – what brings you to the city?”

“Couple of things, none of them good,” Steve said.  “Do you want me to start with the bad or the worse?”

“Let’s start with the bad,” he said.  “The worse might involve going to a bar.”

Steve held out a document to Tony.  It was heavy and cheaply bound.  “We got a visit by General Ross.”

“Urgh,” Tony groaned, rolling his eyes.  “He’s been trying to talk to me for a month.  I keep just putting him on hold.”

Steve chuckled.  “Smart.  I would have loved to have put him on hold in real life.  There’s a move to regulate us.  Did you see what happened with me and Wanda in Lagos?”

“Yeah,” Tony said, with a nod.  “I saw they’re trying to pin it on her.”

“They are,” Steve agreed.  “It’s completely unreasonable.  We stopped a viral weapon from being released by Rumlow, and he was going to blow up an entire square of people.  Wanda lost control of the explosion, but she still saved hundreds of lives.  They’re also trying to blame us for Loki attacking New York and my taking down HYDRA in DC.”  He shook his head.

“What did Bruce have to say to that?”  Tony asked.  “The guy unleashed him and that other Hulk loose on the city and he’s now trying to say we’re the problem?”

“Yeah,” Steve said, shaking his head and laughing softly.  “He wasn’t happy.  Turned a little green on the edges.  You know him though, he’s gotten good at keeping it under control.  Which is good.  That wouldn’t have helped anything.”

“So – what do you want me to do with this?” Tony asked.

“It affects you,” Steve said.  “But I could use some advice.  Read it over.  Tell me what you think.  My gut says not to sign.  Peggy and your dad started SHIELD and look what happened with that.  I don’t trust other people.  But maybe that’s my thing and should affect this.”

“I’ll give it a read,” Tony said.  “What was the other thing?”

“Your Aunt Peggy,” Steve said, frowning and leaning on his hand.  “She passed.”

“Oh -” Tony said, edging a little closer to Steve.  “Oh – Cap…”  He put his hand on Steve’s shoulder and Steve turned to him.   The two men embraced and it looked almost as if Tony was holding Steve’s entire weight.  “I’m so sorry.”

“We knew it was coming… but still…” he sighed and slowly pulled back.  “The funeral is in a couple of days.  In London.  I don’t know if you wanted to go… I know you meant a lot to her.”

“She meant a lot to me too,” Tony said.  “Of course, I’ll go.  I’ll organize the jet.  We can go together.”

“Thanks, Tony,” Steve said.  “Sam and Nat said they would go to.”

“Yeah, no worries.  I’ll – I’ll sort it out.  We can go tomorrow morning.  I’ll text you where to meet me,” Tony said.

“Alright,” Steve said.  “Sorry.  I’m sorry.  I’ll let you get back to dinner.  It was good to see you, Pepper.”

“And you, Steve,” she said.  “We should have dinner under better circumstances another time.”

“Nice to meet you,” Steve said, shaking your hand again.  “Tony always says such nice things about you.”

You smiled as you shook his hand that little bit too long.  “Yeah, he talks you up a lot too.”

Tony walked Steve out and you sat back frowning as Pepper pulled out her phone and called someone.  You felt odd.  It wasn’t just because you had just met someone that Tony was close to for the first time and had to pretend to be something you weren’t.  That was strange, but not too bad in the grand scheme of things.  Tony would tell him eventually and it wasn’t like anyone was forcing you to be secret – you had all agreed it was best to just feel things out until you were certain.  There were so many things that felt strange about what had happened above and beyond that.  The way Steve seemed to flirt with you.  The fact you hadn’t ever heard about this Aunt Peggy before.  The fact that tomorrow Tony was going to leave for a funeral for his Aunt and Pepper would likely go with him, while you would need to stay at home because you were still just the friend, and you couldn’t be there for your boyfriend in his grief.

You felt that itch in the back of your head to go drink.  You could ignore it when Pepper and Tony were here, but you were pretty sure that Tony was going to come back in, grab a slice of pizza and then tell you he just needed to go for a walk, and that walk would be down a few blocks to the bar.  He’d come back smelling of Scotch and cigarette smoke and tomorrow he and Pepper would leave and it would just be you, alone, wishing you were drunk or high and overthinking the whole nature of your relationship.

Pepper walked out of the room as she began talking to the people responsible for organizing the jet and Tony came back in and slumped into the chair next to you.  “Was it me or was Cap flirting with you?”

“No, he was,” you said.  “But I don’t think it meant anything.”

“Might need to stake my claim, huh?”  Tony teased, bumping his knee against yours.

You chuckled.  “You can tell him if you want,” you said.  “I mean… he’s your friend, right?  You can trust him.”

“I think it might be more of a sit-down and announce it thing with him.  He won’t get it,” Tony said.

“Who is Aunt Peggy?” you asked.

“Not really an Aunt.  She was a friend of dad’s.  But she was nicer to me than dad ever was,” Tony explained.  “She and Cap had a thing before he went on the ice.”

“Tony,” you said, tapping your thumb anxiously on the table.

“What’s wrong?” he asked, tilting his head and raising an eyebrow.

“I really don’t want to make your thing about me,” you said.  “And I feel like shit even saying this – because Pepper should go with you.  I’m definitely not saying she shouldn’t.  I just – I’m worried if you both leave me here alone I’m gonna do something.  Drink – use.  I don’t know.”

“You’re not coming with me?”  Tony asked, genuinely sounding perplexed.

“I don’t – is that an option?” you asked.

“Why wouldn’t you?”

“Won’t that be hard to explain?  I mean a bunch of your friends are going on the jet with you,” you explained.  “I didn’t know her.  What would be the explanation for me being there?”

“I want you to come,” Tony said, frowning.

Pepper came in and took her seat at the table.  “The jet’s organized.  It’ll leave at 10.  I texted Steve the time and runway.”

“Thanks, honey,” Tony said.  “I want to take you both with me.”

“Are you sure that’s a good idea?” Pepper asked.

“It’s just Steve, Nat, and Sam,” Tony said.  “We can tell them.  Right?”

Pepper looked at you like she was studying you for your reaction.  “I’m okay with that.  If they can keep it quiet.”

“Well, Nat’s a spy,” Tony joked.  “It’ll be fine.  And won’t it be easier to have people around if we don’t have to keep explaining away why both of you are here?”

“Okay,” Pepper agreed.  “Well, I guess the timing could be better – but sure.  We can do a soft outing.”

You laughed.  “Sounds good to me.”

Tony took one of your hands and one of Pepper’s.  “Thank you.  I really don’t want to do this without you.”

Your heart broke for him, but at the same time, something relaxed inside you.  This felt big.  Like this might be something permanent.


// NEXT

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