Who: Peter Parker, Tony What: a visit while Tony was resting at home, and making sure Spidey isn't doing things Spidey shouldn't do (but he's going to anyway). When: backdated!
Being home was the greatest. Sure, he was supposed to be resting and not overdoing it, but the entire penthouse was there so everything felt much less tense than being in the clinic. Morgan was at an ice cream party that Tony wished he could join in on (who doesn't love ice cream?!), but instead he was laid out on the couch in front of the TV, with multiple holographic screens up. He wasn't bothering Bruce or Christine either, and he was sure those two wanted to get a rest after two weeks of watchful waiting for someone who couldn't wait to get home. Or back into the lab, after that.
A lot of ideas and plans were forming. The nanobots were holding up. Friday's scanning - which was sent to the docs - showed his vitals were holding steady. Everything was good.
All he had to do was not be running around like a big damn hero. Walk at regular intervals, don't eat shitty, and rest so his heart didn't explode. While resting, he could see everyone that was visiting on the cameras and have Friday open the door for them. Tony’s health episode had brought back plenty of unpleasant memories for Peter, along with a new kind of determination. He couldn’t control Tony’s cardiovascular system, but he could try to manage the stress it encountered, right? So that meant a stop at one of Manhattan’s healthier food joints along with a decision to maybe-kinda-sorta keep his upcoming plans quiet.
“Hey!” Peter greeted after thanking Friday for letting him in. He flopped down on the couch and placed the bag of takeout between them, giving Tony an anxious glance as if to make sure he wasn’t near death’s door. And he wasn’t, thankfully. He was very much alive, and Peter very much wanted to keep him that way.
“I brought salads. Healthy salads.” A little nose twitch said what Peter thought of that, but he wasn’t exactly going to bring a cheeseburger to torture Tony with. “You feeling okay today?” Tony was already looking and feeling like his old self again. Which part of the reason for all this was he was getting old. A fact he kept trying to find work arounds for.
One of those work arounds was eating salad, although Tony didn't think of that as a long term solution. What was life if you couldn't have a Wagyu and Gruyere cheeseburger? Please.
"Yay, healthy salads," Tony said, in the manner of someone who wasn't all that enthused about healthy salads. Seeing as he was being fed those a lot lately. Still, he wasn't about to complain any further than that. He was glad to see Peter, and catch up with his protege again. Peter had dropped by a couple times in the clinic, but out of worry about a blood pressure spike or anything, any touchy topics were put on the backburner. "Let's eat those in a few. Catch me up on stuff. How's the neighborhood? Stop any bike thieves lately?" “Yay,” Peter echoed in a deadpan tone, his excitement levels matching Tony’s when it came to leafy greens. But any gesture - no matter how small - was worth making if it meant there could be the tiniest chance it’d help his health. And that included holding back on updates that would probably make Tony’s hair turn grey.
“It’s good! It’s good - the neighborhood, I mean. It’s good. I’m good,” Peter said, clearly already off to a great ‘look at me I’m not being suspicious in the slightest’ start. He shifted in his seat and squinted off into the distance, his thoughts running through his recent escapades…the ones that didn’t have anything to do with Loki or Hammer Industries, anyway.
“I stopped a few bank robberies this week? All linked to the same crime family too. Umm, what else - I found a lost dog! This lady couldn't find her chihuahua and he was riding the subway with a bunch of commuters. And I caught a dude graffitiing up the side of a building, but I think I convinced him to apply for art school cause his stuff was really awesome.”
He left out the less than friendly stories; like the mugging that had almost gone south, and the car accident he'd helped with over the Brooklyn Bridge that had been all kinds of messy and scary. But he was growing up, or at least he was trying to. There were some things he could handle on his own, even if the upcoming weapons delivery was a bigger plan than he'd had in ages.
“And y'know, I've been doing that patrol on Hammer's building, too,” Peter ended up mentioning, if only because he really, really didn't want to outright lie about it. “Everything's all handled there.” "First, yay for all that stuff. Second? Back the truck up."
Tony closed his eyes and looked like his entire body twitched as he sat on the couch. He took three deep breaths and held both hands like he was doing some sort of yoga meditation method to reach his happy zen place. Then he opened his eyes and looked at Peter, with all the accuracy of a locked and loaded laser guided missile system.
"What you mean everything's handled there?" Tony asked, tilting his head a little and squinting a lot. "Is that handled as in 'I got the patrol at a distance going on'? Or is it handled like 'I literally put my hands or feet on the building'? Because one of those things is better than the other and I had you nod with me. Remember that? Nodding. When I told you to just keep an eye on it and report in? I remember that. Kind of like how Pepperidge Farm remembers. Which is totally a meme even now, so don't even try to tell me you don't remember."
It was a safe bet that, years later, some variation of this speech would happen when Morgan wanted go on her first date. And it would occur after a thorough criminal background check with state and federal law enforcement. Maybe the NSA and SHIELD screening things too, just to make sure whoever dated his daughter wasn't sending sketchy text messages or addicted to porn. Peter started nodding - because it was just what he did when Tony went into dad mode - as his mind raced through ways to qualify all of this. Technically, his hands and feet had very much been on the building, and he’d gotten a piece of intel big enough to be significant…but Tony had just had a heart attack. And if he knew that Peter was about to infiltrate Hammer Industries with Loki of all people - well, that would be a whole boatload of stress he didn’t need.
“I remember all that! I totally remember all that,” Peter assured. There were plenty of reasons he wore a mask as Spider-man. To protect his identity, for one, and to hide his emotions for another. This was one of those times where being in his spidey suit would have had an advantage, because Peter wore his thoughts all over his face. Thoughts that very much said ‘I-might-be-up-to-no-good-but-I-really-want-to-help’.
“You trust me, right?” Peter thought about that for a moment before adding: “I mean - mostly anyway, right? So you’d kind of trust me when I say I got this?” He wouldn’t be dishonest, but the itch to prove himself never really went away, and he had even more motivation to try to take this on so Tony didn’t have to. “I’m being as responsible as I can. I promise.” "Only as far as I trust myself," replied Tony. While he did trust himself a lot of the time, he also knew what he was capable of when it came to making sure people were safe. The sky was the limit as far as what he would do in that instance. "Don't go in there. Watch, don't infiltrate. Got it? Nod if you got it."
He raised both eyebrows up over wide eyes, like he was waiting for Peter to nod.
"You nod, we eat salad," he added quickly, "and the world's a better calmer place for everyone. Where I don't have to keep tabs on you, or have Happy tailing you, or ask your Aunt where you are...."
That list could go on and on. Well, shit.
Peter decided the only thing he could do here was nod. “Yeah, yeah,” he agreed, already trying to reason with himself that sneaking in wasn’t exactly the same as going in, right? He wasn’t planning on getting caught; it was a retrieval mission, quick enough to get a scope of the problem and some evidence if they were lucky. If everything worked out, he’d take a burden off of Tony’s shoulders and prove that he could handle the bigger things on his own.
…Hopefully. Regardless, he had even more of a motive now to make sure things went right.
“You don’t have to worry about me,” Peter said, even if he was pretty sure Tony would worry anyway - and vice versa, too. He cleared his throat and moved to start opening the takeout boxes, shifting the conversation to safer topics. “Hey, do you think you could look over my notes later? I’ve been working on a different formula for my webs - something that’s kinda more heat resistant. Not sure how it’ll hold up, but…” Tony stared at Peter as though he was trying to read the kid's mind. Unfortunately - along with a whole laundry list of superpowers that would be cool to have - he didn't possess that ability. Trying to get a read on Peter was like trying to nail down himself: Like a basket of puppies that were one baby talk away from a piddle party on a priceless Persian rug.
"All right. So I won't worry." He was placing a lot of trust in Peter, and he held out a hand for one of those salads. Science stuff was a surefire way to get Tony talking, "Sure, send those over and I'll give them a look. We can have Friday run simulations to see if it's viable...."
And just like that, things were back on track again.