Sorry I've been MIA, I was just sorting out the next few chapters and how this story is going to go as well as working on a few others. Just because there's a lot to get through I'm trying something new with this chapter again hope you don't mind.
It had been exactly one year since his daughter was born, and he was looking at his perfect little princess now, viciously smashing her tiny hands in to the mess that was once a very nice birthday cake.
"Beth sweetie, you're meant to eat it." He tried picking up some of the goop that was once cake and put some in his mouth to show her, causing Pepper to chuckle behind him.
"It's just watching you trying to get her to eat, it's so funny."
"Open wide for Mommy." Pepper said as she put the spoon full of baby food in front of her daughter's mouth. Elizabeth promptly refused and just sat staring at her daddy.
"Can I try Pepper?" Tony asked, noticing how his daughter was staring at him.
"As long as it doesn't end up like the last time." Pepper said, remembering how the last time Tony fed her, more ended up on her than in her.
"I'm sure I can manage, besides she's older now." Tony pointed out looking at his six month old daughter. "Go on princess, here comes Iron Man!" He carried the spoon towards her mouth and again she refused to eat.
"Iron Man? Seriously Tony?" Pepper clucked.
He just grinned. "It's so yummy though." He put a little of the food on the end of the spoon and tried some himself. "Really yummy." He helped himself to another spoon full and again, and again until the jar was empty.
"Well done Anthony. What do you suppose she eats now that you've eaten that?" Tony looked from Pepper to the empty jar of baby food in his hand.
She shook her head and pulled out another jar. "What does that one taste like?" He asked.
"You'll have to ask Beth when she's done."
Elizabeth Maria "Beth" Stark continued to mash the food in front of her. "She's so obstinate." Tony says, giving up hope on the birthday cake.
"I wonder who she picked that one up off." Pepper replied. "I imagine it's the same person she got her insomnia from."
The wail came through the baby monitor at exactly 2:02am. Pepper groaned as she woke up rolling over to look at her husband, who was still asleep. How he was still sleeping Pepper would never know. Ever since they brought the child home 2 weeks ago she'd not managed more than a few hours' sleep at any one time.
"Tony." She kicked him.
He grunted and rolled away from her.
"Anthony Stark." She tried, louder and kicking him harder.
"The baby is crying."
"I can hear that." He mumbled in to his pillow.
"Don't you remember what you told me when I was in labour?"
"No." He was trying to sleep; he was a very busy man.
"You said if she wakes up after 2am then she becomes your problem, so the one who did ALL of the work can have her rest."
"I don't think you did all of the work Pepper. I was definitely involved."
"Fine take 12% of the credit. Besides I remember you saying that if she woke up after 2am you would handle it."
"Yes Tony, you promised me whilst I was squeezing out your child, that you would handle anything after 2am."
"Fine." He huffed as he rolled out of bed only to return a few minutes later handing her the baby. "I think this is a problem only Mommy can handle." He was asleep before she realised what was going on.
"Trust you to remember a promise I made whilst you were in labour." He huffed, Pepper smiled although this turned in to full blown laughter when some of the cake in front of the child found its way to the side of Tony's head.
"Is this where the parties at?" Rhodey's voice called out.
"Sup Platypus?" Tony said as he again tried to shovel cake in to his daughter's mouth.
"Hey guys," Rhodey entered the kitchen "this is Joanne." He introduced the woman who followed him in.
"Nice to meet you." Pepper extended a hand to shake the newcomers
"Didn't know you were bringing a date Rhodes." Tony also shook the woman's hand.
"I didn't want her to meet a dirty reprobate like you. I'm here to introduce her to Pepper and my god daughter." He joked
"Your god daughter would like a hug from Uncle Jimmy." Tony said pulling her out of the chair and handing her to Rhodey.
"How much of that cake has she eaten? I remember the last time she ate some junk food…"He said nervously and rightly so.
"Hey Platypus hold the baby." Tony handed Rhodey the small child as he answered the ringing cell phone
"Look at you you're getting big." He cooed to the child, he lay on the floor and held the baby above his head, bouncing her gently.
"My child is not a workout machine Rhodes." Tony had finished his phone call
"Sure she is." He began pushing Elizabeth in the air like a dumbbell making her giggle.
Rhodey counted each rep until he reached 7 when Tony got involved. "7, 7, 7, 7…" He kept calling keeping Rhodey on the same number until he stopped when little baby Elizabeth proceeded to lose her lunch all over Rhodey's face.
Tony howled with laughter as Rhodey sat up, baby vomit dripping off his nose. "This is disgusting." He looked at the bits which had ended up on his shirt. "Why the hell is it purple? What did you feed her?"
"Some baby juice that Pepper left out for her." The woman in question had just walked in, took in her husband who had the biggest shit eating grin on his face and Rhodey who was covered in purple puke and holding her baby.
"I don't want to know." Pepper said as she took the child to clean her up and left Tony and Rhodey to whatever it was they were doing.
"Don't worry Rhodes, no purple puke today." Tony said, thinking of that afternoon and the video he'd pulled from the camera and saved on his computer.
The whole party was a rather quiet affair just the Stark's, Rhodey and his girlfriend. Tony had wanted to throw a massive party but Pepper pointed out that the small child didn't know anybody and that the party was unnecessary because all that was needed was her family. She'd have the big parties when she was more grown up.
Tony and Pepper bid goodbye to Rhodey and Joanne and put Elizabeth too bed. "I can't believe she's one already." Pepper said tucking a small teddy up to the sleeping child.
"Do you remember her first night here?" Tony asked.
"You mean that night you brought us home, put her in the crib, took me to bed and left me there?" Pepper asked.
Tony used his shamefully good skill of climbing out of bed without the woman in it noticing to creep across the hallway to stare at the small being lying in her crib. He wasn't sure how long he stared but soon sensed a presence behind him.
"You've been here for 2 hours Tony." Pepper said sleepily, Tony would've responded but a small cry distracted him. He leaned down and pulled his daughter from her crib and cradled her against him. She started to gum at his cheek "I think she's hungry, hand her here." Pepper took the baby off him and sat in the rocking chair and fed the baby.
Elizabeth grabbed Peppers hair and held on tight. "Ouch, sweetie. Let go, Mommy needs that." She tried to pluck the hair from the babies grasp. Tony came to her rescue and stroked the back of Elizabeth's hand.
"Now, now Beth that's Mommy's hair and you shouldn't pull it." He looked at Pepper's confused stare. "I read it in one of your baby books." He shrugged.
"Every girl needs a special nickname from her daddy." He told her. Together they put Beth back in to bed and Pepper led him from the child's room.
"Want to give her a brother or sister?"
"Let's see how this one turns out first."
"Practice?" He tried
"Not for at least six weeks." Pepper said, and Tony groaned.
"I think this one turned out ok." Tony whispered in her ear as the baby slept.
"Yeah, but I'm not ready for another one. Maybe some practice though?" Pepper said and he grinned pulling her from the child's room stopping to switch off the light.
"Good night Beth. Daddy loves you."
Shorter than I originally planned. The baby food thing? True story, chocolate and banana and bolognaise sauce are the best (however my best friend not so impressed I ate it all, apparently I'm a crappy godmother). The purple puke is also a true story, it's a purple baby juice tastes pretty bland but the puke is a funny colour especially when it's on one of my former teachers white shirt and he has to spend the whole day teaching in it (proud god mummy moment on a visit to my old school) although not so funny when on my face. Push ups…hilarious! We do it to our freshmen lacrosse players tell them to do 10 and keep calling 7, TOO much fun.
Will try and get another chapter up soon. Feedback always appreciated =)