Red or blue?
Tony Stark hated making the simple decisions. He preferred his brain firing on all cylinders. He ran his hands over the silk one last time, making the simple choice.
"Red it is." He said to no one in particular. He strung the tie around his neck, giving ample length on both sides to tie a perfect windsor knot.
Pepper Potts usually brought her expertise to these suit and tie affairs, but she was busy getting ready on her own. After all the invitation to the charity had both her name and Tony’s on it, so she had to be sure to look presentable.
That didn’t mean Tony didn’t like it though. He and Pepper always had an unspoken attraction towards one another, and always had trouble between balancing work and play in their relationship. Especially since her husband, Happy had ‘died’.
Tony started to instantly regret meandering to the thought. It was during the Civil War, Happy got beaten within an inch of his life by Spymaster, who was trying to lure Tony out for a kill shot. Happy handled himself well, taking out Spymaster, but falling to his injuries. Pepper asked Tony to use his new found Extremis powers to turn off the life support keeping him alive, call it a mechanical error that ended Happy’s life. It was in accordance to his wishes, as he didn’t want to end up being fed in a bed the rest of his life. So Tony did it, regretting the decision mere moments later.
He never told Pepper this of course. It was also why he was here tonight, attending a charity event when he should be figuring out what happened to Maya Hanson. He was told she was found bled out in a bathtub, but he wanted to see it for himself.
But Pepper needed him tonight. She was acting out, dating around, trying to fill the hole in her life he had created, although would never tell her it was by his hand. She didn’t want to know if Tony was responsible and he kept his promise to her to not tell her if he made the decision. That was why Tony was here, he wanted to keep his eyes on her, make sure she was okay, and the men she was chasing after weren’t going to damage her further.
He threw on his jacket and headed out of the private room in the back of the jet. Pepper was already ready, sipping campaign from a tall slender glass. She was in a low cut black dress with a slit across the side to show off her thighs. Tony could feel his face fill with blood instantly.
Come on Pepper, cut the act. I am here, you know that.
“We should be there in about ten minutes.” Pepper spoke up, turning around to see Tony in his best suit with the red silk tie he had chose.
“I like the red, suits you well Mr. Director.”
“That order hasn’t gone through yet Pep. You know as well as me that someone else could be the director of SHIELD, I was just doing what I thought was right.” He had been offered the job of course, but was still on the fence about it. He didn’t want Iron Man to become his own face. He wanted to try and keep Iron Man and Tony Stark two separate entities.
“Fair enough. This charity event isn’t for super humans anyway. This is just a normal run of the mill billionaire trying to bring prosperity to his city. He treats me well too.”
Tony was caught off guard by that last part.
“You are seeing him?”
“Yeah. He takes me out when he can, his nights run pretty late though so I only see him about once a week. But during those few moments we spend together, he makes me melt.”
“So am I here to size him up for you?”
She laughed as she finished her drink.
“Something like that.”
The fasten seatbelt sign on the plane started to beep, indicating they were getting close to the party.
“Tony, remember, play nice.”
“Pepper, when was the last time I played nice?”
She just sighed as the plane landed. The door opened and the two stepped out. Tony couldn’t see the man he already hated, but Pepper ran straight to him.
“I would like you to meet my boss and CEO, Tony Stark.”
Tony extended his hand, only to have it crushed in return.
Who is this guy? Billionaire playboy with hands of steel?
“Tony Stark, nice to finally meet you. Pepper has said nothing but good things about you. My name is Bruce Wayne.”