A ROMANTIC EDUCATION - STEVE/TONY AU [CHAPTER 12]
- Previous Chapters: Chapter 1, Chapter 2, Chapter 3 , Chapter 4, Chapter 5, Chapter 6,Chapter 7,Chapter 8, Chapter 9, Chapter 10, Chapter 11
Steve was at a loss for words, he found himself in a circular argument. Either way, Tony was right. After that, he didn’t know what he wanted. It felt good but it also felt wrong and now he couldn’t even look his own girlfriend in the eye.
He tried to listen to the teacher as they began the lecture, jotting down notes but he found himself doodling across the page, once again he was trying to distract himself and maybe escape from reality just for a bit, after all, that’s why he loved English so much; so that he could escape in the world of fantasy.
He was suddenly jolted out of it when the teacher started handing out tests for a pop quiz that he was certainly not ready for. A look of panic was across his face as he looked down at the paper and watched the rest of the class calmly accept their fate.
Tony was sitting there silently, and snapped out when the teacher handed him a quiz, He looked at it and snorted, it was way too easy for him. Suddenly, an idea passed from his mind. He tore out a piece of paper from his textbook and wrote down: If I pass you the answers for this, you and I get to spend some time outside school. Deal?’
He folded the paper and placed it on Steve’s desk without turning back, smiled and started filling down the gaps of the test.
Steve looked at the paper, he would never cheat but he needed to keep his grades high and this was something he wasn’t ready for especially in his current mental state. He looked around then wrote on the paper, “Fine.” And passed it forward by dropping it on the floor and sliding it under the desk with the tip of his foot. What had he gotten himself into, and why would Stark want to spend time with him after school?
Tony almost finished answering the short questions when he received his note back he smiled again and waited until the teacher turned his back then quickly took out his mobile phone, snapped a picture of the answers and started working on finding Steve’s number. His phone scanned the room and a list of numbers appeared to his screen, of course, nothing but the best. The phone was a new invention from Stark industries; a prototype he had worked on himself in his spare time. Once he had found the right number, he sent the photo to Steve. He wasn’t entirely sure if the jock figured out why he wanted to spend some time with him later on.
The blond felt his phone vibrate then pulled it out subtly as he tried to hush it by keeping his hands wrapped tightly around it, if he was caught he would be in big trouble. After seeing the answers he jotted them down quickly. Having never done such a thing and feeling terrible after committing the deed, a part of him wanted to get the answers wrong but a part of him wanted to just pass and get it over with. After all, it was only a pop quiz and counted for what, 2% of the grade? It wasn’t much but he had to push himself from now on. After he had written everything down he sat back in his chair, wondering why Tony wanted to see him, what more could he possibly want to say?
Tony just waited patiently for the teacher to get back the tests and wondered if Steve had actually used his answers. He noticed that the guy had a great sense of ethics and honesty, something that he himself was lacking, and it was really intriguing.
The captain had finally gotten his paper back; he had made some mistakes on purpose as he didn’t want it to look exactly the same as Tony’s. Though he knew after doing this that karma always had a way of getting back at him. Even as he looked at the high percentage that was enough to pass, he looked at the paper sadly, knowing that it wasn’t a real victory so he had nothing to be pleased about.
The final bell went off, the day was now over for him but he realised that he had agreed to spend time with Tony; this is going to be a long day.
The young genius packed his things and turned around to face Steve with a grin. “Got them all right?” he smiled. “You’re welcome”, he said before the jock could have any input as he stood up. He could see Pepper waiting for him outside the class so they could head back home, but Tony just waited for Steve’s reaction.
“Thanks.” He muttered, packing his things into his bag and slinging it over his shoulder, “Your girls waiting for you.” He said as he gestured toward Pepper.
“She’s not my girl”, the other boy said quickly, almost sounding as if he were apologizing to him. “She’s my… Best friend”. He walked up to her. “Pepper, I’ll get home later, you can go now.” He whispered to her.
Pepper turned to look at Steve for a moment and nodded, heading back home.
“I feel sorry for her you know.” He said, not making eye contact with Tony
“Why is that?” he asked, surprised. “Pepper’s fine. You should feel sorry for your girlfriend.”
Steve’s eyebrow twitched, he hated it when people talked about his girlfriend and not to mention that Tony was right, Steve did feel sorry for Peggy himself. “You’re leading her on. Well, not intentionally I guess but Pepper likes you. Whereas I am actually in love with Peggy so there’s no need to feel sorry for her.”
Tony shook his shoulders. “Pepper’s been my friend for a long time, but I don’t feel anything else for her. I wouldn’t take advantage of her, ever”, he said coldly. “If you’re in love with Peggy, why did you cheat on her?” he asked in his turn.
“I didn’t cheat, you did it, and you kissed me. It wasn’t the other way around Stark, how dare you accuse me of cheating. As for Pepper, can’t you see that she loves you?” He asked
“Last time I checked, you didn’t exactly push me away, and you did hold me quite tightly”, Tony said in his defence. He couldn’t let Steve blame it all on him. “Even if she does, I can’t love her back. It’s better for us to stay friends”
“You’re breaking her heart. She cares about you.” He said, walking out of the classroom with Tony by his side, though he had his eyes diverted, looking in front of him with his head held high. It was better for him to exude confident body language so people wouldn’t ask him what was wrong.
“I know Pepper. I would hurt her more if I did something with her without feeling it. She wants things that I can’t offer her.”, Tony said, amazed by the fact that he could openly talk to Steve about this. He was trying to catch up; he always hated how tall people didn’t try to walk slower for the others to catch up with them.
“You’re still breaking her heart by not showing some sort of care for her, you just use her as an assistant, and I’ve never seen you really be friends with her.” He continued to give Tony a lecture as he walked outside, carrying on with his journey home whether Tony was with him or not.
“You’ve seen me for less than a day, Rogers, don’t assume that you know anything about me”, Tony said coldly. “And I didn’t see you and Peggy acting like a loving couple either.” He had no idea where they were going, he was just following Steve, interested in their conversation.
“Peggy and I are loving enough; just because we don’t have sex everywhere doesn’t mean we don’t love each other. I love her, hell, I usually stay and wait until she’s done with cheerleading practice today but she’s told me to go home, that’s how much she cares about me.”
“Then you might have more than a best friends thing going around than lovers”, Tony said curiously. “The whole relationship seems weird to me, no offense”
“We don’t pride ourselves on public displays of affection. If you want to see us kiss, if that gets you off, then whatever. I don’t care, we are together and we’re going to get married.” He sounded so certain as he spoke.
Tony started chuckling and stopped walking for a moment. “Married? Are you serious?” he asked between his laughs. “No, that wouldn’t get me off, not at all”, he said chuckling again.
Steve looked over his shoulder at Tony as he stopped, “I’m damn serious. We’re going to get married; Peggy is planning the best day to announce our engagement, probably after we graduate from college. We’re even going to the same military academy. She said she wants to work with me and develop herself, aiming to become a female lieutenant is a big thing for her.”
“I’m sorry Rogers; I can’t take anything you say seriously. Wedding? Engagement? Really? All this serious talk from a kid your age? You haven’t been to the real world yet you just want to stay inside your perfect lovely world with Peggy. You can’t have a perfect life, Rogers, get used to it.”, Tony said with a sudden serious tone as he walked next to him again.
Steve laughed, “Trust me Stark; I’ve been to the real world. I’m happy as it is and I’ll do anything to maintain this sort of happiness.” He said as he walked through the streets with his hands in his pockets.
Tony didn’t reply to that comment. He stayed silent for a while, thinking about what Steve said. He didn’t want to admit that he was a bit jealous of him. People thought that Tony Stark had everything, but he missed some simple life things. He couldn’t reiterate enough how interesting Rogers really was to him. “I see.” He commented and continued walking, looking around the streets.