|ɑgɛɳt ɱѳɓiuร (jetskiing) wrote in avengers_logs,|
@ 2021-09-03 20:51:00
|Tony was the literal worst at dating. The one time he went out on a picnic with Pepper, he was antsier than the ants. At least she brought pudding cups, and had years of wrangling him and handling scandals under her belt. But being on anything outside of a one night stand was weird, and even Tony was questioning his life choices in times of duress. Which was a thing that happened every time he woke up and looked in the bathroom mirror.|
And that brought them to Tin Lung Heen inside the Ritz Carlton Hong Kong. Two Michelin stars. Tony had arranged for a VIP room, and from the moment they walked in it was a whole lot of "Hello, Mister Stark" and "Right this way, sirs" as they were shown to the private dining area and seated.
"No getting away now," Tony joked as he settled into his seat, keeping his hands out of the way to avoid being handed anything directly. "I mean, you could open a door and jump ship."
Mobius was, admittedly, a little nervous for this adventure as well - those nerves felt like electricity skittering under his skin, or butterfly bombs just going off one by one in his stomach, though he definitely wouldn’t call it a bad thing. It was a good kind of anxiety - because this was something new and, quite frankly, something he’d been curious about now that he was in a place where he had the freedom to feel that way.
And, honestly, a place like the Ritz Carlton was one hell of a way to kick things off - the architecture was gorgeous, with all its splayed curves and canopies, and they had the potential to be pretty high up off the ground. It was one of the world’s tallest buildings, wasn’t it? ‘Go big or go home,’ as they said. And Mobius didn’t plan to go home.
“I could,” he agreed with a laugh, also settling - he had opted for a more modern suit than the usual brown shade (were he at the TVA, he’d have plenty of those hanging up in his utilitarian closet, in boring quarters that saw absolutely no action whatsoever). “But I don’t really see a reason to - plus, I’m hungry.” Oh yeah - and dim sum was a pretty tasty-sounding draw. “And I’m glad we got a chance to step away for a little bit. At least our shift in locale seems marginally less weird now.”
Tony barked out a little laugh at the fact that Mobius said he could, a little nervous and a lot amused by the response. Usually having dinner with him was like sitting across from an excessively stubborn eight year old, with unchecked attention deficit disorder and a bad case of tourettes. Giving him chopsticks was going to be part of the fun.
"I think we're getting used to the new normal," Tony said, being no stranger to seeing a lot of weird things for the past few years. He half expected the rug to get ripped out from under him again, but he wasn't antsy. Being around Mobius was a mellow experience at least, although he had a million questions about that too.
He ordered some tea for them both. White, aromatic, a good palate cleanser. As ordering sheets were placed on the table before them, he said, "Still wondering how you wrangled Loki into submission. I bet that took time and effort."
He studied the selections - and there were a lot. Fresh shrimp dumplings to fried turnip cakes to other fancier things involving wagyu beef - and he honestly could go for just about anything, but tea was a good way to start. The white tea was delicate and the aroma that wafted from the cup was reminiscent of vegetal subtlety. He tapped his fingers on the side of the small cup when it arrived, just once, considering.
“I studied him for - probably an eon,” Mobius replied. “Ever since he was a baby, left to die.”
They were mirrors, in a sense. Mobius was patient, calm, understanding - stubborn too, but in a quieter way. He processed his thoughts one at a time in an equally quiet way, organized in boxes - it was just the way he was but whatever he was, it seemed to work well with someone like Loki.
“For awhile I think my whole life was just - me in the time theater, listening to that holoprojector clicking on and seeing his life. And I always knew he could be so much more than whatever role the Sacred Timeline had shunted him into. All of us too, you know? We can be a lot more than what was written.”
He kept glancing up from the menu, thinking the new suit suited Mobius, and in Tony's mind, that guy was just begging to bust out into clothing that wasn't a shade of school principal brown. Of course, he might have spent a moment thinking of Mobius busting out of the suit entirely, but that's the usual meandering path Tony's mind took.
He could also see that Mobius was a good counterpart to Loki's drama, which far exceeded his own showboating. If he had a showboat, then Loki had a cruise ship that could rival the Titanic.
As he listened, Tony chose the crab meat with salmon roe, abalone puffs, and a few other items that sounded good. Never could go wrong with peking duck, or freshwater eel with sticky sweet plum sauce.
"So Loki really is one of the good guys?" Tony asked, that being the foremost of questions he had about Loki. "Thor talked about him like he was a pain in the ass, but the greatest thing since sliced bread too. It sucks he was left to die when he was a baby, but that didn't stick. He grew up in Asgard and, let's face it, despite the whole adoption trauma? Loki was pretty pampered otherwise."
“I think he’s sort of evolved into that,” Mobius grinned. “Though good and bad’s kind of complicated as a dichotomy - but we’ll keep it simple and just say yes.” Pampered, yeah, he’d agree with that too. There were happy childhood memories in Asgard - it was beautiful, from what Mobius had witnessed. The fire from endless lanterns and how it brightened the edges of the golden city. The palace grounds, love breathed into the literal, actual golden walls - but despite all that, he sort of got the impression that Loki had never really felt seen before.
Plus being told by father-of-the-year that you were basically a bargaining chip meant to unite kingdoms and, well, oop - probably not the best thing to hear when you felt out of place your whole life anyway. When you shifted into new skins over and over, trying to find the best one - when your armor thickened and a hurricane brewed within your chest, and how you were taught to hate what you actually were.
All of those dim sum offerings were a-okay with Mobius too, when Tony ordered. He’d eat just about anything - oh, and something about a bird’s nest as well. Just because it sounded interesting. “I’ve had a couple of Jotunn in an interrogation room before too - they’re created to survive and persevere, and Loki’s not an exception to that.”
Then he reached across the table, fingers brushing Tony’s. “You’re pretty curious about him?”
So, Loki was good. That meant he could stop giving Thor's little bro grief over the whole window thing.
Nah. Tony was sure it was fun for both him and Loki to goad one another. If there was one other thing (besides engineering) that Tony was good at, it was trolling.
"Fair enough," he conceded with the shrug of a shoulder. "A lot of people like to bring up my past, and I'm not exactly easy to deal with either. I don't know his whole story. He sulks off in a corner somewhere, but everyone deserves a second chance. Then it's a case of fool me once, shame on him. Fool me twice, shame on me...and I get to blast him in the face, as soon as I fly back up to the penthouse again."
Their orders taken, Tony sipped his tea without spilling it. Literally, at least. Figuratively, all bets were off since spilling tea was a daily indulgence. Still, he forgot all about that the moment that Mobius' fingers brushed against his. Few people dared to do that. Mostly, everyone veered around him, so Tony wasted no time clasping hold of those fingers. His hands bore callouses from a lifetime of tinkering, and countless burns from soldering irons.
"I've always been. The way Thor talked about him was a tip-off, and he could get protective of Loki too. Mischief dying and not aiming for the head were the straws that broke Thor's back."
Tony shrugged, looking at Mobius with soulful, yet insatiably inquisitive, brown eyes.
"I'm curious about you, too. Good guy, pretty much can talk to anyone. Also had an interesting but shady career, and this is coming from a former bomb builder. And your history's a mystery, so...bonus points."
Well, now those eyes just weren’t fair. Mobius felt his poor heart do this little stop-and-start thing, a stuttering thing. Like it was a burst water hose or some such. His own hands were calloused too - he didn’t do the work he did, out in the field or otherwise, without roughing himself up a little. He was warm though, in demeanor and otherwise, and he laced his fingers with Tony’s like this was a diner and they were about to share a milkshake with two straws. Very sweet.
“It is a mystery,” he smirked, referring to his own history. “I’m not sure if I want to know. Sometimes I do because at least it would fill in the emptiness I’ve always felt and then I think, what’s the point? I have an identity and a new purpose and there’s no getting that timeline back. It’s long gone. I can build my own future.”
So yes, he waffled about it - frequently. And would probably have to rely on Sylvie digging deep enough to unearth what was stuck deep in the recesses of his mind. Part of him felt guilty about asking her, however. “I guess the best part about it is that no matter what I decide, it’s my choice. Kind of a new thing for me.”
Choice. Free will. Wild concepts.
Maybe they should've gone to the diner instead. A milkshake moment seemed like the right thing right now. They both had warm hands, so it must have been a case of warm hearts too. Although Tony was good at hiding it, sometimes it showed. Right now was one of those times.
Not knowing where you came from though, that hit hard. He remembered feeling adrift when his parents were gone, like the life he had before had been blotted out somehow. And he only helped that by doing whatever he could to blot it out further. Fast machines and even faster sexual conquests, not to mention copious amounts of hard partying and days spent on builds without sleep. Even then, he remembered some of it.
But not knowing anything?
"I think it's better to know," Tony blurted out, his fingers squeezing ever so slightly between Mobius' fingers. "Sure, it's long gone. Sure, you can build something up. I guess I always thought it's better to know, than not to know. Full background disclosure. It's a good thing, too."
He learned that in Siberia, before that fight with Steve and Bucky.
It was true. Mobius also kind of had to admit he desired the closure. That way he was putting to rest something that he’d come to accept was really gone, because there was no salvaging the timeline that He Who Remains had already decided shouldn’t exist - and he didn’t have to wonder anymore. Didn’t have to look back and feel an ache because of all these unanswered questions - what was his family like? Did he have a dog (he’d always kind of wanted a dog)? How about a jetski - did he have one of those too? Moving on felt like the distant horizon - something he wasn’t ever sure he’d reach but he probably owed it to himself to try.
Maybe it was also easy to think that he’d been pulled from that imaginary jetski so he could end up right here, holding hands in Hong Kong. That was a pleasant feeling as well.
“Well, I suppose you make a good point,” he said, thumb stroking the side of Tony’s hand. “Might need some help though. Support, I mean. If you’re up for a challenge.” One that didn’t have to do with AI or robots or other tech - but you know. All that emotional stuff.
"I'm probably too blunt to be like, great support, or anything," Tony admitted, the thumb rub resulting in a pleasant shiver that made him blink more profusely. "I'll be here if you need me. Whenever you need me. No matter the circumstances."
Not letting go of his hand,Tony's chair quickly scooted closer, and closer until they were sitting side by side. He normally wasn't so touchy feely, and he was horrible at cuddling most of the time. That didn't stop him from wanting to climb into Mobius' lap, which was a thought he was about to make a reality when the food arrived.
As each dish was set down, he looked them over and then grinned at Mobius. It was a grin that might rival any Loki for sheer mischief managed. As soon as the wait staff left, he confidentially whispered, "I mean, if you really want some fun comfort times, I kinda got the best suite here. Because you can't eat dim sum and not wallow afterward."
Or other things. Other things were good too.
“Blunt’s okay,” Mobius assured - he wasn’t complaining about that. Wasn’t complaining about the way Tony scooted his chair around either - in most restaurants sitting side by side wasn’t usually a thing, but did he care? Absolutely not. “And see - you’re not so bad at the support thing.” Telling someone you’d be there for them, no matter the circumstances, well - it meant a lot to Mobius. Meant a lot to him to be able to return the favor too.
That spread of food looked delicious and Mobius fully intended to crack into it - and definitely consume it all, with the help of his date. But first he took a moment to be bold as brass all up on the one-hundredth (or so) floor, high in the sky. Instead of responding with words to that invitation for fun comfort times, he leaned in and closed the distance between them. Tripped and caught his mouth with Tony’s (oops?), a kiss that was sweet as honeysuckle and soft as silk at first - it also felt as good as ice felt, soothing a burn. There were a lot of things about Mobius that were soothed with the action. The scrape of stubble was one thing about kissing a man that he was actually very into.
He was also glad this was a VIP room, more of a private dining space.
“Wallow afterward? Is that what they call it?” he returned the cheeky grin.
Often Pepper had to be the one to lure Tony into a romantic interlude, otherwise he got impatient and things got awkward or full of innuendo. So that sudden kiss worked. Tony was no stranger to that 'Oops I tripped and my mouth landed on your mouth!' trick, and he nearly snerked against Mobius' lips when it was used on him. Nearly, since he got too lost in the moment to actually fall through with it. He was already addicted to a few vices, and this qualified as an addition to that list.
Oh, there'd be laughs later in the suite, because Tony still guaranteed a fun time in the bedroom. He was enthusiastic about everyone enjoying themselves, and he really wanted to explore things with Mobius more. After a kiss like that, it was a done deal. He wanted more.
There was a mega watt smile on his face to prove it.
"Fine, the wallowing comes after. And hey, this is nicer than trying to get into your pants while there's turbulence on the flight home. I mean, we could have but why risk a nibble turning into a chomp? No thanks."
Tony was, if anything...blunt.
He laughed, a happy sort of sound that was all sparkling champagne and these fizzy bubbles that were just going off within him - popping, one by one, an exciting feeling and pretty new to someone like Mobius. Who had basically zero experience and zero memories where he could recall anything similar. Even if he did somehow get his memories back, he doubted he’d have acted on anything regarding his curiosities about being with a man - whatever timeline it had been, it likely wasn’t something that fit.
Just goes to show that the here and now was much better.
“Well, something tells me that you’ll have access to my pants whenever you feel like it,” he admitted. Maybe that made him easy but - honestly, who cared. It was a choice and as long as it was a choice they made then it really wasn’t anyone else’s business who Mobius let into his pants.
The fact that someone actually wanted to get into his pants was kind of exciting too. Someone like Tony Stark. “But - in case I forget to mention while I’m taking your pants off? Thanks for this. I’ve been having a good time.”
Tony's smile only brightened, if that was possible. Whatever happened when they first talked in the lobby on the day that Mobius arrived? It clicked. And it was a good thing.
"Yeah, we're losing the pants," Tony promised, staring with laser focus at Mobius as he picked up his chopsticks, somehow managing not to drop them. At this rate, he'd be feeding Mobius little dumplings and it would be the most romantic thing ever, right before he pounced him up in the suite. Which is what he was imagining right now would be fun and potentially a complicated thing, given his track record with romances was more like a series of catastrophes.
Not that it ever stopped him before. And it wasn't going to stop him now.