A month later and his hand finally stops hurting, it was never broken only bruised and maybe 80% of the pain was phantom sensation, but it still hurt like hell. Tony's glad it just stopped.

The awkward moments with Cap haven't stopped though. The Avengers team works together fine, and Tony's even a bit surprised at the cohesion of a unit he and Cap seem to possess. They can easily pair up and create a plan, follow it to a T, and then if things get rough, it's simple to improvise and send the changes on down the line- no problem. Cap was supposed to be the leader, and really he is, but at the same time he's more of a co-leader with Tony. Cap actually listens to him and Tony never realized what that felt like since no one's ever done it before.

So, to be more precise the awkward moments with Steve haven't stopped. Fury wanted the man to have a bit of freedom, have time to get 'acclimated' to this society since everyone knows the forties don't exist anymore. Fury's great plan was to have Steve shack up with him, in Stark Towers, in his freaking penthouse. He actually has to share. Tony Stark doesn't share...not unless he wants to and he sure as hell doesn't want to.

Living with Steve is like living with each Founding Father and a walking, talking, living embodiment of the Constitution. The news is on every television, and every five seconds Steve is spitting something about someone's rights, and a laws and justice and blah, blah, blah. It's obvious he has issues with this world, this time. He can't believe half the problems the USA alone is dealing let alone the world nor can he believe the lack of action towards any of the situations. Ask Steve about anything and Tony can easily say the man has an answer; such a simple answer that in no way would work, but everyone wishes it would just so Steve would shut up- or maybe that's just Tony.

Then there's the fact the guy won't stop talking to him. Every time Tony gets up it's 'Good morning, well afternoon. You should really take better care of yourself, quality sleep is important.'

First off there's no such thing as 'good morning' for Tony and half of America gets up after noon, it's how things are done. Throughout the day it's worse. Steve is always trying to strike up a conversation, tries to follow him into his lab, always trying to get to know him. It's creepy. Steve just can't seem to pick up on the fact that Tony doesn't like him, at all. He doesn't want to be friends, or pals, or buddies, or acquaintances; he can't even stand living with the guy!

Aside from that, the man eats everything. All the specially made sandwiches Tony had prepared for his personal consumption were gone in two days, who the hell eats thirty sandwiches in two days? Mr. High-as-Hell-metabolism apparently.

Now Tony's a prisoner in his own home, holed up in his bedroom hiding from Steve with his custom Starkphone in his hand scrolling through the contacts. He settles on 'The Big Cheese' and dials, impatiently waiting for the person to pick up.


"He has to go!"

"Stark? How'd you get this number?"

"What does that matter? What matters is the Capsicle, I cannot live with him. You have to put him somewhere else."

"And where do you suggest I put him? A trash hotel in Brooklyn?"

"Yeah, sure, anything's better than here."

"He's a living legend Stark; I can't put him just anywhere. What's your problem anyway; he's a nice guy, even to you."

"That's just it, he's too nice, and he won't leave me the hell alone! How am I supposed to work with that huh? Build all those secret weapons you want?"

"Stark, you don't even build the weapons now. Is this because Steve ate all your sandwiches?"

"Well yeah but that's not the only reason, he-"

"I don't care Stark. I'll get you more sandwiches, other than that you have nothing to complain about. Now lose this number."

The line went dead and Tony huffed, throwing himself against the headboard, pouting. He should've known Fury would take Steve's side, he practically worships the guy. Tony sighed and chucked the phone at the wall, groaning in annoyance when the thing didn't shatter- why did he make it indestructible?

"Sir, Captain America is looking for you. He's coming-" A thump stopped Jarvis mid-sentence and Tony jumped as the bedroom door fell in, dropping to the ground like a felled tree. "This way." Jarvis finished, and Tony flashed him a glare in no particular direction since Jarvis was everywhere.

"Would've been better off calling 'timber' Jarvis." Tony spat, glaring at where the door used to be, where instead Steve stood with that annoying innocence, hand in mid-knock.

"Uh sorry, I-"

"'Don't know my own strength.' Yeah I know. What do you want?" Steve visibly flinched at the harshness of Tony's voice. Tony would almost feel bad if he cared, if anything, it was a small victory.

"I wanted to talk." Steve is suddenly serious and Tony can feel a lecture coming on, he's sat through enough if those to know it's not something he wants to do again.

"Yeah well I don't." Tony yanked his shirt off the chair and started for the door, he could already feel anger boiling up. He couldn't even have privacy in his own room!

Tony didn't expect Steve's arm to shoot out and shove him back onto the bed, in fact he was shocked by it. "Fine. Listen then." Steve blocked his view if the door, towering over him with a seriousness in his eyes that kept Tony from moving even though that's what he wanted so desperately to do. "I don't know what your deal is Stark. You obviously don't like me, and you know what- that's fine. I've decided I don't like you either. I gave you a chance and no, it's not working. But we're part of a team; we can't be against one another like this."

"Then leave me alone, it's not that hard."

"I can't do that either. Fury won't put me anywhere else, I'm stuck here. Since we're both living here we need to learn to get along. Eventually our hatred will make it onto the battlefield and I can't have that."

"I don't care, you leave me alone and everything will be fine." Tony went for the door again and Steve's hand clamped down on his shoulder like a lock, forcing him back into sitting on his bed. It got even worse when Cap decided to sit down next to him.

"You're my teammate, like it or not. I can't just leave you alone. We need to at least try and make this work Stark." Steve's hand still gripped his shoulder, tightly, and Tony could feel the numb setting in, the familiar fear. A knot twisted in his stomach and he started to sweat, this was a serious violation of personal space.

Steve kept talking; his voice became a solid drone in Tony's mind. He could feel Steve's eyes burning a hole in the side of his face, he was sweating more and his hands wouldn't stop shaking. Tony found it hard to push down the overwhelming urge to scream, to hit Steve and run. He could feel his nerves stretched tight, the clamminess of his skin, he needed to get away. Steve was a solid weight though and Tony felt paralyzed, stuck. The tension was starting to build up, the seconds felt like minutes, the minutes, hours and Tony clenched his fists in an attempt to calm down. This wasn't the same; this wasn't his dad, or Obadiah. He was fine; he just needed to convince his body of that.

The messages weren't getting through, and Tony could feel his mind slipping into a dark place. He couldn't hold out much longer, his silent pleas of 'leave me alone,' kept running through his head, but nothing made it to his lips, he was ready to burst. "Stark? Stark are you even listening?"

"Leave me alone!" Tony screamed and pushed himself away from Steve, falling to the ground before scrambling to his feet. He immediately felt some of the tension leave his shoulders, his chest; he no longer felt totally trapped or like he was under someone's thumb. He couldn't stop shaking though, and Tony mentally cursed himself for that.

"Stark, are you okay?"

"Stop calling me that! My name is Tony, Tony. Stark. I am not my fucking father so stop calling me that!" Tony could feel the panic fading immediately into anger and humiliation, he lost control again, couldn't remember where he was, that he was safe. Usually it was only the nightmares he had to deal with; he never had a meltdown in front if people. But this time it wasn't just people, it was Captain America, Captain-fucking-America, and he looked like a total wimp.

"I'm sorry, I didn't-"

"I don't care. Just shut up! Just leave me alone, okay? Leave. Me. Alone. I'm going to the lab." Tony stormed out the room, his face burning. He tried to look angry and nothing else but when he reached the lab he couldn't stop the silent tears from falling.