Ned stumbled out of the van as soon as they'd parked and grabbed the end of the stretcher, helping Bruce wheel it inside. Tony followed after, the three of them racing in and pulling Peter into the infirmary.
"I need heating blankets, warmed oxygen and an intubation kit, right now!"
The medical team Bruce had standing by rushed forward with supplies, pushing the gurney into a cubical as hands gently pushed Tony and Ned back.
Tony grabbed Ned and pressed him to his side as he watched Peter being covered with heating pads and blankets, an oxygen mask pressed over his mouth and nose. Peter hated oxygen masks, he always complained about them but this time he didn't move.
Tony's voice was quiet amongst the noise. "Why do you need an intubation kit?"
Bruce didn't look up from where he was wrapping a blood pressure cuff around Peter's bicep, being careful not to move him too much. "In case he stops breathing again. His lungs may already be compromised."
Ned shivered against Tony's side, sniffling as he choked on his words. "I can't watch this anymore."
He ran from the room, leaving Tony's side cold and the room suddenly spun. Peter was blue. He'd stopped breathing. It had been fifteen minutes since they'd pulled Peter from his classroom and yet it felt like only seconds had passed.
Bruce flicked a light back and forth across the top of Peter's cheeks, lifting his eyelids one at a time and cursing. "His pupils are unresponsive. We're losing him here. God, his blood oxygen is shit. Someone get me that kit, I'm going to have to intubate."
Tony didn't feel like he could watch anymore either but his feet wouldn't move. They were injecting the kid with things and then Bruce was snapping on gloves and prying Peters mouth open, forcing something inside as the monitors began to scream.
"I know, buddy. I know. We'll get you breathing again in just a minute. There we go. Tube."
He held a hand out, a tube was slapped into his palm and that too was being shoved down Peter's throat. God, how deep did it need to go? Tony could almost feel himself gagging watching it disappear into Peter's mouth.
"Tony? Shit, you shouldn't watch that." Steve sounded worried but Tony couldn't look away from where Bruce was taping the tube to the side of Peter's mouth, his blue lips twisted around the intrusion. Peter was going to hate it.
"Come on. Let's get you sitting down."
Strong hands pulled him away, tugging at him until his feet were stumbling down the hall and into a lounge where Ned was already sitting with Bucky, sobbing against his shoulder.
Steve sat Tony down, forcing him to take a seat, watching him closely for any signs that he was going to break; like he was a bomb that Steve might have to diffuse.
"This is all my fault."
Steve frowned, hands moving up and down his friend's arms as he tried to centre him in the here and now, to chase the glazed look from his eyes. "What are you talking about? Of course, it's not your fault."
"It is. I should have just gotten him the goddamn clothes. It doesn't matter how guilty he'd look or how much he'd insist he didn't need me to. I should have just done it. I should have driven him to school myself and made sure he was safe."
Steve wrapped an arm around his shoulders and squeezed, his steady grip the only thing that made Tony realize he himself was shaking.
"You can't blame yourself. You know you did what you could to keep him safe. You can't be with him all the time and you had no idea that the school's heating would go out. This isn't on you."
Bucky spoke up from where he was sitting with Ned, the kid still wiping at his cheeks. "Yeah, this is on that son of a bitch teacher that thought it was okay to keep those kids there in the cold. As soon as we know Peters okay I'm going down there and I'm going to r-"
Steve frowned at him. "Buck, language."
Bucky shrugged, arm still around Ned. "What? I was just going to say we report him to the school board and have him fired."
Steve looked disappointed. "Oh, I thought you were going to say we should punch him or something."
Bucky's voice rose half an octave though really he shouldn't have been surprised. "And my language is what you had a problem with?!"
Tony interrupted them both, sighing as he scrubbed a hand over his jaw. "What am I supposed to do if he's not okay?"
"He will be. He's a reliant kid. You know that. Don't do this to yourself."
Tony took a shaky breath, gesturing to the door. "Any minute now Bruce is going to come out and tell me he needs me in there to say goodbye."
Steve gave him a squeeze. "That's crazy."
No, what was crazy was Bruce's timing. The door swung open and he popped his head out, waving an arm. "Tony, I need you in here."
"I'm sure it's not for that!"
Ned burst into tears all over again. "Oh my god, is Peter dead?"
Bruce stuck his head out again. "What? No, I need him to help warm Peter up. Are you coming or what?"
Tony scrambled to his feet and followed, mouth moving just as fast as his feet. "Why do you need me? What happened? Did he stop breathing again?"
Bruce led him back in, grabbing his tablet and swiping through Peter's vitals. "No, I've got him intubated, we're covered on that front. But his temperature isn't rising. It doesn't matter what I do, he keeps declining. I need you to try skin to skin contact."
Tony almost couldn't breathe looking at Peter in the bed. He was still so blue, his frozen little fingers stiff and curled, peeking out from under his blanket. Bruce had him wrapped up and covered in every blanket and heating pad he had, he had a bite block covering most of his face to keep the tube in place and now he had blood running from lines stuck in his arms.
Bruce looked up when Tony didn't respond, gesturing to the transfusion line as he grabbed a hold of Tony's arm and pulled him forward. "It's to try and warm his blood before pumping it back into him but it's not working. Tony, he's getting worse. If we don't warm him up he'll go into cardiac arrest. I need you to try."
Tony blinked and nodded, pulling his shirt off. "I'll do it. I just don't understand. I thought skin to skin contact was the first step? How is it going to work when nothing else did?"
Bruce pulled back the blankets enough for Tony to slip into the bed, curling around Peter's side and tucking his head under his chin. He wrapped an arm around him and held the boy close, hissing at Peters frigid skin, stinging against his own.
Bruce watched as he tucked them in. "Peter's too cold to retain or create heat. I'm hoping that having another body close will support his system enough to start warming him up."
Tony looked down at the kid in his arms and lifted a hand to brush those curls back. God, he was just so cold. He had to be in so much pain.
"Can he hear me?"
Bruce took a breath, tired. "He's in a coma. I'm...I just don't know."
Tony looked down at the kid, his closed eyes and blue tinted skin. He looked like he'd already died.
He still might die.
Tony pushed the thought away and took a breath to settle himself.
"I hope you can, Pete. Because I need you to hear me when I tell you to hang on. We'll get you warm again. You just have to hang on for me, okay?"
Tony wasn't expecting a response and he didn't get one, Peter's chest rising and falling under his arm with each mechanical breath that the ventilator pumped into him.
Tony brushed his fingers back across the kids' temples, stinging from Peters frigid skin. "Goodnight buddy. I'll be here when you wake up."
He closed his eyes and pressed his forehead to those cherub curls that Peter liked to fuss with so much. "Just promise me you'll wake up."
"...his heart rate is rising again. Is that normal?"
Voices. Muffled and quiet. Peter was pretty sure the first one was Mr Stark.
"It's probably the pain. His chest, his stuff muscles, his skin. Waking up isn't going to be a pleasant process."
That one was Bruce and as always, he was right. Peters skin on fire and frozen solid all at once. Every touch burned him and every movement against his skin felt like ground up glass pulled across it.
The mechanic beeping grew louder as did the voices. "He's frowning again. Pete? Can you hear me buddy?"
Peter could hear and he could feel but he couldn't move like he wanted to, arm jerking weakly when he'd meant to reach out for Mr Stark. It didn't get far but it met resistance and flopped back onto his mattress before he could find what he was looking for.
"There you are! You listening, buddy?"
Peter tried to move his head this time, managing to twitch to the side and grunt.
"That's my boy. Try not to move around too much, Brucies still got you intubated. Try and relax."
Intubated? Was that what the gross thing in his mouth was? Peter grunted again, frowning as he bit the tube, back arching off his bed as he pulled at what was bound to be restraints around his wrists.
"Hey, hey, hey. Stop, kiddo. What did I just say?"
Tony sounded worried, voice high and panicked as opposed to Bruce's low tone.
"Peter, let go of the tube, you're cutting off your oxygen. Let go."
Warm hands brushed at his cheeks, making his skin burn. "Peter, you're okay. You need to let go. We'll get it out when you're ready but right now you need it. Just relax, look at me."
An alarm started beeping and Peter's lungs screamed at him for air as his head spun but Mr Stark was waiting for him.
"There we go. That's it. That's it."
Peter pulled his eyes open, blurry vision taking in the shaky blob in front of him and the shaky blob further back.
"Hey, Petey pop. I missed you."
The beeping slowed as Peter relaxed his jaw, chest once again rising and falling, though it still sent sharp pains through his chest with each forced push of air.
Missed him? Where had he gone?
"I was worried you were gone for good this time."
Peter blinked, vision clearing enough to see that Mr Stark was smiling at him, perched on the side of his bed.
Peter blinked at him, sleepy and out of it, arms still pulling restlessly at his restraints. Tony didn't like having him tied down like that but Bruce had worried Peter would try and extubate himself if they didn't.
Tony laughed a little, brushing back those curls and smiling when Peter's eyes rolled back with each stroke. "I know you're confused right now. All you need to know is that you're safe. Bruce and I are taking good care of you."
Bruce frowned at his tablet, adjusting charts and taking notes from monitors. "Don't forget about his friend. He's been here every day since you've even brought in, Pete."
Tony nodded, taking one of Peter's hands with both of his, wrapping it in warmth. "That's right. I had to force him to go back to school without you. Of course now that the teacher who almost killed you has been fired he's a little happier but it wasn't easy. He didn't want to leave you."
Peter watched him, eyebrows scrunched as he tried to work out what he was talking about.
Tony sighed and gave him a smile. "Don't worry about any of that now. You just get some sleep. The tube will be out when you wake up and I'll be able to explain everything then."
From the look on Peter's face it was pretty obvious that he wanted everything explained right then and there but his eyes were already falling shut of their own accord and within just a few seconds he was asleep.
The next time Peter woke the tube was indeed gone from his throat and the restraints nowhere to be seen. But just like the last time he'd opened his eyes Mr Stark was right there waiting for him.
This time, however, he was sitting in the chair next to his bed, tapping at his laptop and humming to himself.
His head snapped up, humming falling silent as he broke out into a smile. "Peter! You're awake!"
Peter watched him drop his laptop and come over, hands slow and uncoordinated as he pushed at his blankets, trying to get his legs over the side of his bed. "Am I late to school?"
Ton's hands pressed to his chest before he could get his second leg over the side, gently pressing him back down. "Woah, Pete. Slow down. You're not late for school, kid, you're in the medbay."
Tony took a seat on the edge of Peter's bed, shifting his hands away from his chest to tuck him back in instead, lifting the hanging foot back under his blankets. He looked confused, blinking up at his mentor, eyebrows furrowing as he tried to process the information given and the information around him.
Tony watched him look around, trying to figure out what had happened. "Was I on a mission? I-I don't remember…"
Tony shook his head, tucking Peter's nasal cannula back behind his ears where it had come loose. "No, buddy, you were at school. You got too cold and Ned had to call us. You were hypothermic. But it's all okay now."
Peter nodded, closing his eyes for a moment as he breathed, finally catching up. "Oh my god. I'm so sorry."
Tony tilted his head, smiling as he brushed a hand over Peter's hair. "What are you apologising for?"
Peter looked at him, hesitant and sorry like he was about to be told off. "You made me wear all those clothes to stay warm and you were worried and then I…"
Tony had noticed that Steve and Buckys clothes hadn't been on him when they'd brought him in. "You what?"
Peter let out a breath that was only half a groan, lifting a pale hand to scrub at his eyes. "I gave them away."
Tony paused for a moment. He gave them away? What? Was this kid trying to get himself killed?
He tried to stay calm, folding his hands in his lap as he grit his teeth. "To whom?"
Peter looked up at him again and it really wasn't fair to use the puppy eyes. He knew Tony would always give in to those. "Please, don't be mad. I was walking to my train and saw some people that needed them more than me. I didn't know the heating would go out at school. I thought I could be warm there and then ask you for a ride afterwards so I wouldn't have to walk home in the cold."
He sighed, tired and pulled anxiously at his pulse ox clip.
"I didn't mean for this to happen."
Damn that kid. Tony let the tension bleed from him, pulling in a breath as he pressed a palm to Peter's cheek, running his thumb across the pink skin. "I know you didn't, kid. I'm not mad at you. It just worries me how much danger a change in weather can cause you. I've seen you dig yourself out of the rubble from a collapsed building and run off without a scratch. But when Ned called and told us how bad it was I...it scares me."
Peter leaned into his touch, eyes on his fidgeting fingers. "It scares me too. I didn't know it would get so bad."
His eyes peeked upwards, trying for a smile. "It makes the whole Spider-man thing a lot less cool, huh?"
Tony took the bait and the olive branch, smiling back and leaning forward to press a warm kiss to Peter's forehead. "Nah. I still think you're pretty cool."
Peter looked happier and Tony felt better for having him back. The lingering anxiety was gone, replaced by warmth and a dozen ideas for some discrete heating options for Peter.
"So, I'm not in trouble?"
Peter was hopeful but Tony hummed, only half joking. "I didn't say that. Look, I know you want to help people and that it's hard to walk away when someone needs you but there are better ways to help than giving them the clothes off your back. So, when you see someone that needs help think about it a little more, okay? You literally have a billionaire in your
Peter squinted, pulling a sleepy arm up to rub at his eyes. "I don't know what a rolodex is."
Tony laughed. "It means loop me in next time, genius. You don't have to strip for strangers to get by."
Peter let out a snigger, eyes drooping. "Gross. Don't say it like that, I'm underage."
Tony nudged at his chin, watching the kid fall asleep in front of him. "You know what I mean. You don't have to do all your superheroing by yourself. Got it?"
Peter nodded, head falling to the side as his eyes slid shut. "Got it. Night, Mr Stark."
Tony shook his head with a smile. "Night, Petey pie."
Peter was feeling better and thankfully Bruce agreed enough to release him from the med bay. Unfortunately, Mr Starks level of worry had not decreased much at all.
"I really don't think I need this many clothes!"
His wardrobe was full. His walk-in wardrobe was full. Peter had never owned so many clothes in his entire life.
"Relax, I didn't even get any designer labels. Pepper said you'd hate them, anyway." He pulled a wallet out of his pocket and handed it over.
"I also got you this, because yours was adorable but every man needs a proper wallet without velcro or duct tape. I put some cash in there and a credit card in case you need-"
Peter pushed the wallet away, trying to give it back before Mr Stark had even finished his sentence. "Woah, I can't take that!"
Tony frowned and shoved it into Peter's hoodie pocket before he could argue anymore. "Yes, you can. I know that it makes you nervous when I give you things but this is for my benefit. I need to know that you're safe and that you have what you need to stay safe. If you see someone that needs help, buy them a jacket instead of giving them yours? Please. I'm begging you to just think about yourself a little bit. And while you're thinking of yourself, have some fun. Get yourself something that you want just because you want it. Not because you need it for school."
Peter looked down at the folded leather, bills stacked inside and cards lining the insides. It was too generous.
Tony could see he was about to protest again and started walking out, heading back to the breakfast they'd left on the table. "I know what you're going to say but I'm not taking it back."
Peter followed behind, socked feet thumping the carpet with each hurried step. "You don't have to do this. Seriously, I'm applying for some jobs I can do after school and on weekends to get some extra money."
"You won't have time to do patrols or homework if you're working, Pete. You'll run yourself ragged."
"This is way too much money!"
"It's not to me, Pete. I literally found that wad of cash in an old gym bag I was about to throw out. It didn't make a difference not knowing where it was."
"I can't take it!"
Tony spun on his heel and pointed a finger at the teenager. "You make one more excuse and I'll buy you a car. You understand me? I will buy you a tesla and make you drive it to school everyday like a snobby rich boy if you don't just take the money."
Peter opened his mouth to complain only for Tony to raise his eyebrows. "I mean it!"
Peter huffed out a breath, defeated. "Fine. But for the record, I think it's ridiculous that you used the threat of more money to make me take this money."
Tony waved a hand as he retrieved his deserted coffee from the bench, mood unaffected by their early morning quabble. "You say ridiculous I say genius but, whatever. Noted."
He took a sip, savouring the bitter taste, closing his eyes for just a second as he did.
He didn't see the sneak attack coming and he stiffened a little in surprise as two arms wrapped around him and squeezed. He opened his eyes to see Peter pressed to his chest, smiling.
"Thank you. For taking care of me, and worrying and...thank you."
Tony smiled and put his coffee down to hug the kid back, resting his chin on those soft curls. "No problem kid. You make all of that easy. Especially the worry part."
Peter whined at that but Tony was still smiling. "I knoooww."
Peter let go and let his mentor get back to his coffee, ignoring his own breakfast when he passed it to grab his backpack.
"Hey, you didn't finish eating. You know what Bruce said."
Peter spun and replied as he continued to walk backwards out the door. "I'll finish it when I get back."
Tony followed him, already worrying again. "Woah, woah, woah and we are you going? You don't have school and you're not allowed on patrols for another two days until I've finished the suit upgrades. Where could you possibly be going?"
Peter shrugged, opening the door as his feet kept taking him backwards. "I just have to take care of a few things. That's all."
Tony put his coffee down, wagging his finger full force as his anxiety grew. "No way. We just thawed out our Petey pop and now you want to go out? You've only just gotten out of the med bay. What's the rush?"
Peter groaned, frustrated at being so vulnerable to the cold that Mr Stark got worried about leaving the house at all. "I made a promise to help some people out and that was four days ago! They're going to think I lied or forgot about them! I'm going to be fine. I'm wearing five layers and I'm letting Happy drive me so that I don't have to wait for the train."
Tony put his coffee down and took Peter's arm, pulling him back to his bedroom. "You're not going out in that cold-"
Peter whined, pulling against his mentor's grip. "I have to! I promised!"
Tony sighed and let him go, eyes tired and a touch rueful. "-without a jacket and some proper shoes."
Peter smiled and gestured to the door. "I was going to wear my sneakers. I left them by the door. I wasn't going to walk around in socks."
Tony pulled a pair of thermal lined shoes out of the wardrobe. "I said proper shoes, Pete. And you'll need a jacket."
Peter sat down in his bed and pulled the boots on, frowning as Tony pushed a jacket at him. "I already told you I'm wearing five layers."
"That hoodie isn't going to keep the wind out. This will."
Peter groaned but obliged, leveling a mild glare at Tony when a hat was shoved over his head, ears tucked in, and gloves pushed onto his hands.
Tony smiled, admiring his work with his hands on his hips. "Perfect."
"I look like a snowman."
Tony shrugged and went to his room to grab his own jacket, throwing his words over his shoulder as he went. "Then you're perfect!"
Peter clipped his belt up. "You didn't have to come."
Tony started the car and pulled out of the garage. "I did actually. I promised May, Bruce and Ned that I would keep you safe and not let you freeze again. So, we are going to do whatever it is that you've promised to do and then we're going home."
Peter relaxed into his seat, watching Tony as he concentrated on the road. Home. That sounded nice.
"So, where are we going? "So, where are we going, young padawan?"
Peter laughed softly at the name but gestured ahead. "The charity shop on fifth and then the supermarket would be awesome, thanks."
Tony drove, not entirely sure what they were doing but happy to do whatever the kid wanted as long as he was safe and warm.
They parked and Peter got out, Tony following, confused and more than a little weirded out at the prospect of Peter wading through other peoples old clothes.
Peter looked happy though, heading to the counter and politely asking for a box to put his things in. Tony smiled as he watched him, the old lady immediately falling in love with the sweet young boy with such good manners. Of course he had good manners, it was Peter.
"How big do you need it, dear? I have a few I can give you."
Peter had his hands clasped in front of him, rocking a little on his toes. "Oh, I plan on buying a lot of things so a big one would be perfect if you have it."
She nodded and bent down to grab the cardboard box, handing the bulky thing over as Peter beamed at her. "Thank you, Ma'am."
The woman watched him turn and hop down the jacket isle, excitement making him bounce more than usual. She sighed and turned to Tony. "Your son is a sweet boy."
Tony let a smile pull at his mouth, a little bounce making its way into his own step as he went to follow Peter. "Ain't he just?"
He found Peter pulling jackets from the rack and checking the tags for which materials it was made from, finding the warmest, thickest ones and throwing them into his box.
Tony scrunched up his nose, blue blood curdling at the thought of wearing a stranger's used clothes. His hands itched for some hand sanitiser and he shoved them in his pockets, repressing the urge to tell Peter to stop touching them. "Please, tell me you aren't buying these for yourself. I bought you a wardrobe full of brand new clothes you can wear."
Peter's hands didn't stop moving as he spared a half-offended glance and scrunched nose. "There's nothing wrong with buying second hand, Mr Stark. In fact it's way better for you, the environment and the charities the shops help. But, no they aren't for me."
Tony wasn't convinced, still confused as to what the hell they were doing. "So, who are they for?"
This time Peters hands stilled, settling atop the pile of jackets and sweaters he was making. "The people I gave my winter clothes to didn't have anything else. They were suffering and alone and I couldn't walk by while I could do something about it. So, I gave them what I could and I promised I'd come back with more. I really want to keep that promise even if it's a few days late."
Tony nodded and watched him continue filling his box, adding shoes and blankets, socks and hats, a few pillows and even books. He picked up a few kids clothes too, muttering to himself as he added a teddy bear, a ball, and some action figures.
"What else do I need? I got the blankets...okay, food and medicine."
Tony watched Peter haul his overflowing box to the counter, flashing his excited smile at the cashier again as she looked at the pile with surprise.
"My goodness you did say you were buying a lot but I wasn't expecting this! Is this all for you?"
Peter shook his head as he helped her sort the clothes to find the price tags. "Oh, uh, no not for me."
Tony almost rolled his eyes. Of course Peter wouldn't want to tell anyone what he was doing. He was babysitting a saint.
The woman rang up his purchase and Peter handed over the cash, for once not fussing about how much money he was spending.
Once bought and paid for Peter hauled it all back to the car and set it in the back, ready for their next stop. Tony couldn't help but ask. "I'm not criticising or complaining. I'm genuinely curious. If you're buying all of this for the homeless people you met, why didn't you just buy them new clothes?"
Peter tugged his hat down over his pink ears as he answered. "The money I spent at the second hand store is going to be used to support those that need it. If I had spent money at a corporate store it would go to a rich, white guy that has enough money to end world hunger but refuses to."
He winced, quickly turning to his mentor with a mouth full of apologies. "No offence! I don't mean you! You do so much to help and you-"
Tony laughed, shaking his head. "I know, Pete. It's okay."
Peter sighed and shrugged. "Anyway, buying second hand also helps keep materials out of landfills and benefits absolutely zero rich assholes. So, bonus."
Tony hummed, thinking about it. "That is cool. I didn't know that."
Peter had about the same level of excitement at the grocery store, grabbing a cart and filling it with food, toiletries and medication. Cough syrup and vitamin supplements went in as well as a few treats that Tony helped shovel into the cart. By the time they got to the counter the cart was full and Peter was using the cart to slide across the floors like a kid.
They were almost to checkout when something caught Peters eye and he swung the cart towards it.
"Pete, where are you going?"
He watched the kid grab some gift bags and rolls of ribbon, throwing them on top of the pile of supplies. "I almost forgot the ribbon!"
Tony wasn't sure what the kid was doing but when he got everything to the car it became obvious. Peter didn't just want to give these people the supplies they needed he wanted to give them presents. Damn that kid was cute.
It took a while but once Peter had organised all his supplies he was more excited then ever.
"Okay, so first head towards the subway station. Please."
Peter had been worried they might have moved but there they were, just as he'd first found them; huddled and cold.
Tony followed as Peter carried his gifts, stomach dropping at the sight of the woman and her son, practically blue and sitting on cardboard. Two little brown eyes peeked up at Tony and he shivered as Peter rambled.
"Hi! Do you remember me? We met the other day. I'm really sorry I didn't come sooner. I got...well, I got sick but I brought you something."
The woman blinked at Peter, her whole body shivering as she coughed into her elbow. "I remember you. Thank you for the clothes."
Peter smiled as he knelt down. "You're welcome. I thought you could use a few more though. Here."
He handed the bags over, ribbons tied carefully on each one and the woman gasped, her son reaching his pale fingers out to touch the sparkly bows with a smile, voice tiny. "Mama, presents."
The woman opened them up, taking out clothes and food, soaps and toothpaste, feminine hygiene products and blankets. "Oh my...thank you!"
The boy's face lit up as he found a bundle of fruit. "Apples!"
Peter grabbed another bag and handed it over. "This ones for you. I hope you like it."
The boy hugged his apple with one hand as he took the bag and looked inside, squealing with joy at the toys and clothes he found inside, pulling out the books and showing his mum.
The woman wiped tears away and sniffled as she reached for Peter. "Thank you. Thank you so much, you don't know what it means to us!"
She hugged him, Peter squeezing her back and Tony felt like a silver spooned asshole for turning his nose up at second hand clothes when Peter was spending his free time helping people and hugging the homeless, people that were denied eye contact much less affection.
They seperated and Peter spoke to her a little longer, telling her he'd be back to see them soon before bidding them goodbye.
Tony was floored. Peter moonlighted as a superhero in his spider suit but that wasn't enough. He managed to be a hero as Peter Parker too. That kid was one hundred percent good and no one would ever tell him otherwise.
Peter was already onto their next mission. "I hope I get to hug our next two! Especially Riley!"
Tony followed after him, wheels already turning in his head as Peter led him to a man sitting on the street with his dog. Oh, that must be Riley. No wonder Peter wanted to hug her.
He gave them the same ramble about being sorry he couldn't come sooner and the man just stared as Riley wiggled excitedly as Peter scratched at her ears.
"You came back."
Peter looked guilty even as he pulled his bags forward. "I promised I would. Sorry, I'm late. I hope these are okay."
The man didn't take the bags at first, too surprised that they were there in the first place and Tony quickly pulled out his sunglasses to hide the wet shine in his eyes. God, it was just heartbreaking.
"You got me food...and-and clothes. There's...there's a lot here."
Peter pointed to one of the bags he'd set down, Riley already nosing at it. "This one is for Riley. I got her a jacket and socks so you wouldn't have to give her yours. I got her this too."
The pup licked Peter's nose, making him laugh as he plopped a hat on her head to cover her ears. "Thank you, girl. I love you, too. Hang on, I got you something else."
The man laughed, eyes wet as Peter gave Riley a teddy bear and a ball, the dog wriggling and wagging her tail as she was given the toys.
It was way too cute and Tony was almost glad when they said goodbye so that he wouldn't come any closer to crying.
Peter was happy as they left, arm bumping against Tony's as they made their way back to the car. "Thanks for helping me with this."
Tony smiled and wrapped an arm around the kid, holding him close to his side as they walked. "Thanks for being the most perfect kid ever."
Peter scoffed, eyes cheeky and amused. "Apart from the lack of self preservation, right?"
Tony laughed and nodded. "That and the messy room could definitely improve but apart from that, you're golden."
Peter pulled his billions of layers off once they got back home and Tony pushed him towards his bedroom. "Go shower while I make lunch, kid. You want tomato or pumpkin soup?"
Peter ran off, yelling over his shoulder as he went. "Potato!"
Tony groaned, yelling after him. "Potato soup is just extra creamy mashed potatoes and you know it! Ah, whatever."
Peter didn't take long, coming back out into the lounge/kitchen in his sweats, hair wet and curls bouncing.
It didn't long for Tony to stick a thermometer in his mouth, setting the soup in front of him as he sat on the couch in front of the TV.
Peter didn't take his eyes off the screen as he mumbled around the thermometer. "Mime mot myporthermic."
Tony pulled it out and studied the numbers, satisfied. "Don't talk with your mouth full."
Peter dug into his extra creamy mashed potatoes, only managing to get a mouthful in when Steve spotted him and began fussing.
"Peter, your hair is still wet! You'll get cold like that."
The teenager groaned, only to be cut off by the towel flopped over his head, Steve rubbing at his hair until it was dry enough, a beanie being pushed over his curls right afterwards.
Peter allowed the motherhenning, as he leaned around Steve to watch the movie playing, Buck laughing at Steve's fussing.
"Now you know how I felt all those times."
Steve rolled his eyes, wide shoulders turning to direct them at his boyfriend. "It's not the same."
Buck raised an eyebrow and pulled Steve out of Peter's way, wrapping his arms around the doritos waist. "It is. I used to worry the wind wouold snap you in half and I'd have to glue you back together. I kind of miss my smaller Steve. I used to be able to pick you up like you were nothing."
Steve frowned, turning in Bucks hold to try and face him. "What do you mean you 'kind of' miss that me? Am I not-"
Bucky, inadvertently avoiding falling in the hole he'd dug himself, pointed to Steve's feet.
"Hypocrite! Why aren't you wearing socks!"
Peter let them argue, or flirt, whichever they were doing. He ate his soup, ignoring the teasing, laughing and neck kissing going on behind him as Tony joined him on the couch, arm wrapping around the back of Peter's shoulders.
"I thought this movie was supposed to be for children."
Peter didn't care what Mr Stark was implying. "It is."
Tony, apparently not implying anything, pointed to the screen, disgusted. "Then why did he just eat a rabbit! That's horrible!"
Peter laughed and leaned into Mr Starks side, a gentle hand coming up to tug his hat down further. "Cover those ears, you'll get cold."
Peter was warm and he was safe and yet Tony still felt the need to drag the blanket from the side of the couch and drape it over them both. But Peter didn't mind.
"No problem, kiddo."
Mr Stark was busy the following week, always on the phone and in meetings with Pepper and other important people.
Peter still got to hang out with him for dinners and lab sessions though and pretty soon he got to go back to school.
"Okay, I made sure they fixed the heating but if you get too cold or you feel sick or anyone gives you trouble you call me, okay?"
Peter let Tony help him with his backpack and held his tongue and as he was wrapped up in layers and layers of clothes.
"If you feel like these aren't keeping you warm enough just wear your spider suit under your clothes and keep the heater on."
"Mr Stark, I'll be fine."
Tony pressed a kiss to his forehead before tucking Peter's ears into his hat. "I know you will be. Okay, be good. Have fun."
Peter was about to leave when two sets of footsteps came bounding towards him. "Wait!"
Peter sighed as Steve pressed a thermos into Peter's gloved hands, Bucky rubbing an affectionate hand over Peter's head. "Take this. It'll help boost your immune system and keep you warm and-"
Peter groaned and removed himself from the gaggle of motherhens. "Thank you, all of you. I really appreciate you worrying about me and taking care of me but I'll be fine. And if I'm not I promise I'll call you. Okay?"
Steve nodded. "Right. Of course you will be. You have fun, Peter."
They all stood there watching him and Peter smiled, giving them a wave as he left. "Bye, Dads. I'll see you after school! Love you!"
Peter was fine to take the train but with everyone still so worried and upset about his near death he had relented and allowed Happy to take him to school.
Thankfully, Happy didn't seem too worried.
"Jesus, you look like a marshmallow. You sure you have enough layers there, Michelin man?"
Peter was more than glad to be back at school but he knew exactly what he was in for when he arrived.
Ned wrapped his arms around him and squeezed, Peters puffer jacket wheezing as the air was pressed out of it. "Hey, Ned."
"Peter, you're back! Are you okay?"
Peter turned to see his classmates coming towards him, people that he knew but didn't usually hang out with. And they were all asking about him.
"It was so scary when you passed out!"
"Ned told us you were in a coma!"
"How did you get hypothermic so fast? You were blue!"
Okay, so Peter hasn't been expecting that. He didn't remember a lot of that day, at least not a lot of the end of it. But he did remember everyone trying to keep him warm.
"Oh, yeah I'm okay now. I just don't thermoregulate very well. So, when I get cold I stay cold and can't warm myself back up. I'm okay now. Thanks for trying to help Ned take care of me."
Olivia, a girl in his maths class that he'd only spoken to once, gave him a hug and Peter momentarily froze before remembering that he was supposed to hug her back.
"Well, were so glad that you're okay. And we're going to make sure it doesn't happen again."
She let him go and Peter gave her a shaky smile as Ned stood there with his mouth open.
She turned and left with the others, heading to class and Ned smacked Peters arm, excited.
"Dude, are we almost popular now?"
Peter gripped just back pack straps and shrugged. "I have no idea. I kind of hope not. I don't need anymore attention."
The rest of the school day went on as usual, apart from the formal apology that the principal gave him on behalf of the school and by the end of it Peter was exhausted.
"Hey squirt. How was school?"
Peter dumped his bag by the counter and grabbed a cookie from the tray Bucky had just taken out of the oven. "It was okay. No, broken heaters this time."
Bucky smiled, pulling the oven mitts off. "That's good but if school was okay then why do you look annoyed?"
Peter couldn't help but pout a little. "I really want to go on patrols but Mr Stark said he needed an extra day to finish my suit since he's been so busy with that other project."
Bucky leaned one hand on the counter as he untied his "chef daddy" apron with the other. "He finished his project this morning. He's in his office, you should ask him about it."
Peter grabbed another cookie to go as he left, feet quick on the carpet. "Thanks!"
Tony was frowning in concentration when Peter knocked on the open door but his face broke out into a smile when he looked up. "Hey, Petey pop. You've come back alive this time. Good for you."
Peter rolled his eyes but made his way over, handing the cookie to his mentor. "Ha ha. Here. Bucky told me you finished your special project. Can I know what it is?"
Tony took the cookie gratefully and gestured for Peter to join him at his desk. "Thanks and yes you should since it was your idea."
Tony flapped a hand. "Well, half your idea. You inspired me. Anyway, after our field trip the other day I was researching a bit about our city's resources and aids for the homeless and found it was sorely lacking. So, I've designed a program that'll be able to offer those in need with warm housing and food as well as job opportunities and possibly schooling."
Peter didn't know what to say. He looked at the plans that were spread over Mr Starks desk, amazed.
Tony shrugged and took a bite of his cookie. "Yeah, well I don't think you should be spending your days off single handedly trying to feed and clothe every homeless person you walk past. Shit, this is a good cookie."
Peter pulled one of the pages from the desk, blinking at the words spread across the page.
"You're calling it the Peter Parker project?"
Tony frowned. "It's not too much alliteration is it? I can change it."
Peter was flattered but there was no way he wanted that kind of attention. "Yeah, maybe you should name it something else. It's not about me it's about them."
Tony thought for a moment, eating the rest of his cookie until finally he grabbed his own and scribbled Peters name out.
"I got it. We'll call it the avengers initiative. Because it's about bringing people together for a common good. And also it'll piss off Fury and that always makes me happy."
Peter took another look at the plans. There were going to be shelters put up in every district, school programmes would help teach kids about how to help out in the community and get classes involved in food and clothing drives.
There were plans for making new jobs available in multiple areas in Stark industries with scholarships for students in bad situations. There were plans for day care and animal services. It was all laid out. Every way you could possibly help those in need, it was all there.
Peter wrapped his arms around Tony's middle. "This is amazing. Thank you."
Tony hugged him back, just as grateful. "You're welcome, kid."
"Don't forget your hat!"
Peter pulled his mask over his head as he ran out his bedroom door. "Spider-Man doesn't wear hats!"
Steve caught him just as he was about to race past the kitchen, pushing a beanie on top of Peter's head and wrapping a scarf around his neck. "Yes, he does! Here, don't forget this."
Steve handed him a baggie of dog treats as Peter smiled, forgetting all about how annoying it was to be bundled up while in his suit.
"Thanks! I'll be back in time for dinner."
Bucky joined Stevem, wrapping an arm around his waist as he nudged a curled finger at Peter's chin. "Don't be late and be careful, okay? You remember that new move I taught you?"
Peter nodded, mimicking the movements Bucky had taken him through during training. "Yep. Grip the wrist, turn upwards, twist and pull."
Bucky raised his palm for a high five, Peter happily striking his gloved hand against it. "Exactly."
Steve looked proud and amused all at once. "Enough talking about dislocating shoulders. Go and have fun."
Peter turned to leave, pausing after a step and rushing back, wrapping his arms around the two of them. "I love you guys."
They wrapped him up in their arms, one of them kissing the top of his head. "We love you too, kid."
They released him and Peter bounced on his toes. "Go get 'em Spider-Man."
Peter raced out. "Bye!"
He was so excited to be going out again. Everyday was better than the next and he couldn't wait to get to his first stop.
The man looked up from his book, the one Peter had gotten him, and waved. "Hey, Spider-Man. Didn't I just see you yesterday?"
He looked happy, smiling as he held a finger to his page to save it.
Peter skipped towards him, thrusting his hand into his bag and pulling out a paper sack. "You did but my friend Peter told me you could use some more of these."
Jack smiled as Peter handed him the cookies inside. "That Parker kid. He's a good one ain't he?"
Peter adjusted his hat awkwardly. "Aw, yeah he's a pretty good guy. You know who's even better though?"
Jack smiled as Peter leaned down to wiggle his fingers at the excited pup. "That's right! It's Jack's beautiful girl! Aren't you, Riley? Are you the best girl?"
Riley's tail wagged so hard her entire body swayed from side to side, her face lit up in a smile. Peter picked up her leash and pulled another biscuit from the bag. "This ones for you, pretty girl. Are you ready for our walk?"
She wriggled harder and Peter gestured to Jack. "Give your dad a kiss and we'll go, okay?"
Jack wrapped an arm around her and kissed her forehead, rubbing her ears as she licked at his face. "Okay, baby you go have fun."
Peter waved to Jack. "See you later! I promise I'll take care of her!"
Jack shook his head, laughing as he watched them race down the sidewalk. "You always do."