(AN: I was having a bad day at work the other day, basically, I was just overtired and overworked and the only thing that made me feel better was 1. eating my dry cereal on my break yum yum 2. changing the playlist for the entire cinema to disney cause fuck everyone else its my fav and they can eat my ass 3. writing this so here we go!
I live vicariously through my boy, you know, the usual.)
"Godammit, Friday would you kill the thrusters a bit? I'd like to keep my fingers for a little while longer."
The AI did as she was asked and Tony squinted as he started tinkering again, only for the AI's voice to interrupt.
"Sir, Peter has just arrived and it seems he's in a bit of a mood. As Happy puts it-" Her voice was replaced by the grumpy oxymoron himself.
"I don't know what the hell is wrong with him but if that little shit gives me that kind of attitude again I'll let him swing himself home. You deal with him."
Tony rolled his eyes at his friend's lack of patience and Peter wrangling and dropped his tools on his desk. "Send him to the living room."
"ETA two minutes."
Tony sighed and wiped his hands down before making his way up to the kid's bedroom to pick something up before heading to the living room and adjoining kitchen, entering the same moment Peter did from the opposite end.
"I don't think I can keep going to classes, Mr Stark. I really don't." The kid usually said hello before he launched into his excited rambles but he was in a bad mood and comfortable enough in the compound to forgo the formality.
He dumped his bag by the couch before flopping down onto it and Tony swiped down at his phone, changing the buildings playlist to Peters favourite mix of rap and old school rock.
The first time Peter had come to Tony upset, he'd been crying and it had taken him two hours to calm the kid down. He'd gotten it down to a fine art by now.
He didn't offer many words as Peter ranted, knowing it was best to let him talk himself out before offering advice.
"Uh uh." He threw the kid his oldest, comfiest pair of sweats he'd grabbed from his room, not bothering to look as he threw them and walked into the kitchen.
"It's not even like I need to go. I know everything they're teaching me and they still think I'm stupid! Mr Taylor hates me and I mean HATES me. It's not my fault he got the equation wrong. I just pointed it out."
He could hear Peter tearing off his school clothes to put his sweats on and kept his back turned as he grabbed a jar of giant cookies from the counter, pushing the hot chocolate button on the coffee machine on the way back.
Peter was pulling his hoodie down over his chest and shaking out his curls when Tony got back to him, mouth moving a mile a minute and face red from his word vomit. Tony handed him a cookie and pushed his shoulder to get him to sit down, putting the jar on the table in front of him.
"Mr Taylor sounds like an idiot."
Peter laughed and waved his cookie around, socked feet kicking against the carpet as Tony curled up his nose and picked up the teenagers clothes from the floor. "Right? He's the worst!"
Tony wasn't one for cleaning up after himself let alone someone else and threw the clothes behind him just to get them out of the way as he went to grab Peters hot chocolate.
Peter was still talking and Tony raised a barely interested eyebrow at Peters new turn in his story.
"And of course she took his side which isn't fair! She didn't even hear what he said! But I got detention just because I was the one without a hall pass. Whatever. Maybe, I'll just quit and be Spider-Man full time. At least I don't get that crap when I'm patrolling."
Tony grabbed the hot chocolate and some extra marshmallows, making sure to only grab the pink ones that Peter liked before going back to sit with the kid.
Peter had eaten his cookie already, hand rubbing restlessly through his hair as he reached for another. He looked worn out and sad now that his anger was dissipating and he sighed as Tony took a seat beside him.
"Sorry. I don't mean to dump this all on you. You have better things to do than listen to my boring school stuff."
The Avenger handed the hot chocolate over and levelled his gaze at the kid. Tony may have perfected the air of boredom in any and all situations but that didn't mean he wasn't listening or that he didn't care.
"First of all, your stories about school aren't boring. It's like a telenovela on tape and I will always listen to whatever new shenanigan you've gotten yourself into. Secondly, Peter, you find school boring because you're a genius and you're right; you're too smart to be there. But high school isn't just about exams and papers, it's about being a kid with your friends. So, you're going to stay in school and savour the moments you have with Ted and DJ-"
Peter's mouth quirked up a little at the sides as he corrected quietly. "Ned and MJ but whatever."
"-Because this is the last time you'll have adults organising everything for you and you're going to miss that when you go off to college. You're also right about Mr Taylor. He sounds like he doesn't know the difference between astatine and selenium."
Peter huffed out a laugh at that, expression brightening as Tony continued.
"And look, Flash is an ass for sure and he never should have said that to you but just remember that he's a highschooler whose biggest concern is whether or not he's getting asked to prom." He took the kids shoulder and shook him a little, making Peter smile.
"You're Spider-Man. You're an Avenger. You're way above that snot-nosed shit-"
Peter's eyebrows shot up at that, laughing and Tony laughed too, shaking his head. "Don't repeat that. Listen. You can handle anything. And whatever you can't...you let us handle, okay? May and I are always gonna be here when you need us. Even if it just boring high school stuff."
Peter blinked at him, eyes finally bright and happy again, all the darkness and temper gone.
He nodded and sighed, relieved and he leaned into Tony's side, blushing just a tiny bit. "Thanks, Mr Stark."
Peter smirked, teasing in his voice as he joked his way through Tony's quietly humming anxiety about being so open with his feelings. "I didn't know you were so soft. You're supposed to be Iron-Man, right?"
Tony laughed and shoved the boy's shoulder before grabbing him again and pulling him into a side hug.
"Yeah, whatever Underoos. You just keep acting like you're a grown-up and you'll get there someday."
Peter snickered as Tony put on an exaggerated, high pitched voice, hugging the teenager as he kissed his cheek noisily.
"My littleee boyyyy!"
Peter pushed him off, full-on belly laughing, all traces of his bad mood dissipated in the wake of Tony's terrible impression of May.
Tony let go but ruffled his hair, and Peters eyes found him again, gaze deeper than it had any right to be with a smile that bright. "Thanks for always taking care of me."
Tony looked away, feigning a lack of interest to keep from thinking about his father or the fact that he sort of felt like Peters. "Don't mention it, squirt."
Peter leaned back into the couch and put his feet up on the coffee table, head nodding along to the song playing softly overhead. "I always feel better after talking to you. Man, I love this song."
Tony smiled. His arc reactor heart had been stretched and pulled so that Peter could fit inside and he didn't mind it one bit. "I know."