sinope: a hundred thousand fireflies (A hundred thousand fireflies)
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posted by [personal profile] sinope at 09:58pm on 20/08/2012 under ,
Title: The Sixth of July
Pairing: Clint Barton/Phil Coulson, Steve Rogers/Tony Stark, and the various permutations thereof
Length: 14,206 words
Summary: Clint loves Phil; Phil has a Captain America kink; Tony likes sex. Omelets, Duck Hunt, power outages, and a very happy birthday ensue.

Note: This started as an idea for a PWP about Clint/Phil and Steve/Tony as established couples who spend an evening together. It ended up having even more lead-up sex, lots of fluffy feelings (especially of the C/C variety), exploration of polyamory, and just a bit of Steve hero worship. Despite the fact that it's mostly filthy smut, I'm actually pretty proud of it.

Fic contains various kinks, but everything's consensual; if you're concerned about triggers, everything is listed in the endnotes.

Also available at the AO3.






Chapter 1: O’er the Ramparts We Watched



It starts like this:

"I watched you while you were sleeping."


&&&&


But really, it starts like this:

Steve walks into the gym one night, just as Clint's unwrapping his hands from a session with the punching bags. He gives Steve a friendly nod, but doesn't expect the man to walk over and take a seat on the bench next to Clint. Clint's still riding down from his sweat-and-endorphin high, so he just raises a curious eyebrow at Steve.

"Clint," Steve says. There's a slight nervous tension in his shoulders, and he doesn't meet Clint's eyes. "Mind if I ask you an awfully personal question?"

Now he has Clint's full attention. "Go for it. My life's an open book." (A lie, of course, but one that people are conveniently quick to believe.)

"I, ah, read about 'Don't Ask, Don't Tell,' the other day, after Tony kept mentioning it around me. It sounded a bit like the way we treated ladies in command in my time -- even when the higher-ups allowed it, not everybody was happy about them being there."

"That's a fair assessment," Clint says neutrally.

"Might help to to know that the best officer I ever worked with was a lady, and I was glad she got her chance to shine. So I don't mean any disrespect when I ask this, and I'm honored to serve with you whatever the answer is." Steve pauses, still staring fixedly at a spot somewhere on the gym's wall, and Clint's has the sudden, hilarious thought that he's about to be propositioned.

Finally, Steve looks Clint in the eye. "Are you and Agent Coulson together like that?"

Ah. Clint thinks through his response; they're not a secret (by SHIELD policy), but Phil prefers to keep things low-key. On the other hand, Clint's pretty sure that lying to Captain America is a federal crime. Or at least a "sleeping on the couch for a week" crime against Phil Coulson, which is more of a deterrent. "Yeah," Clint says, "we are."

A soft smile quirks the corner of Steve's mouth. "You two look real happy together."

"Thanks. I try to keep it that way."

"And nobody around here minds?"

"Well, more than a few of them think I'm crazy for sleeping with the second-scariest man in SHIELD, but it's their loss," Clint grins. He really hopes that JARVIS is recording this conversation, so he has proof for Phil that Steve was curious about his love life.

"And does it work the same way?"

"Uh. If you're asking me to tell you about the birds and the bees, I can do it, but it might take a while. And require more alcohol."

"No, not that." Steve's blushing now, just slightly, but it's still a cute enough sight that Clint has to fight the urge to pinch his cheeks. "I mean, there were boys in my squadron that leaned that way, but it wasn't as if you'd walk up to someone and offer to take him to a dance hall. These days, do fellows treat it like asking out a dame?"

"Oh," Clint says, pieces clicking together at last. Unless his observations are wrong -- which is a damn rare occasion -- Steve's got a crush. On a guy. Clint suppresses a brief pang of if it's Phil, I am so very fucked, because Steve seems like the monogamous type and I would lose that match-up in a heartbeat, but honestly, he's pretty sure he knows exactly who's been ruffling Steve's feathers.

He gives Steve a friendly pat on the knee. "Well, sometimes it works like that. You ask someone out for dinner and a movie, see how things progress. Sometimes you just suggest a hook-up -- uh, that means casual sex -- and see where things go after. And then sometimes you end up telling someone that you've been in love with him for years because you're high on painkillers and relief that he's not actually dead. Depends on the situation, really."

"All right," Steve says. "I appreciate the advice." He's still a bit pink in the cheeks, but his stance is much more relaxed, and his eyes look contemplative.

"Glad to help." And then, because Clint can't help himself and he knows Phil would approve, he adds, "Hey, if you ever need practice or some hands-on tutorial, you know where to come."

Steve gets this wide-eyed look at that; Clint can't decide if it reminds him more of Bambi or someone receiving his first blow job. He leaves the gym with a smirk on his face.


&&&&


Steve never does take Clint up on his offer, but when Clint walks down to Tony's workshop a couple weeks later to find Tony pressed back against a table, neck arched in pleasure for Steve to kiss, he still considers the talk a success.

Given that he's pretty much responsible for them getting their act together, Clint figures that he's owed at least a few minutes of eye candy. The glass walls keep sound from escaping, more's the pity, but it's still plenty satisfying to watch Tony's fingers clench around the back of Steve's neck. They start to grind against each other, rough and uneven; Clint can see the wide strip of flawless golden skin where Steve's t-shirt is riding up, and it's got one perfect bead of sweat trickling down the spine. When Tony reaches downward with his free hand to cradle the curve of Steve's ass, fingers sliding deep enough to indicate that it's hardly new territory for him, Clint decides that he really, really has to leave now. (Mostly because Tony will never forgive him for jerking off against his workshop window.)

He's pretty sure it's his imagination, but as he hurries away, he swears he can see Tony tilt his head and give him a wink.


&&&&


He murmurs the encounter to Phil that night as they're fucking, words low and luscious. "You would've loved it, Phil, Stark's fingers sliding over that perfect ass like he owned it." Phil has Clint on his back, practically bent in half so Phil can thrust into him hard and fast. His strokes are getting ragged and reckless, but Clint just keeps talking. "Maybe I should've stayed to see what happened next. I can just imagine them on the floor of that workshop, Steve kneeling on top of Stark, holding his wrists down, riding his cock like he was born for it."

Clint stops talking for a moment to pant for breath; the room's air feels thick and hot, not enough oxygen, and the combination of Phil pumping into him and Phil's chest grazing against his cock is enough to keep him riding the edge of orgasm. "Don't. Stop. Talking," Phil grits out, punctuating each word with a balls-deep thrust.

"Okay, okay, so -- Jesus, Phil, wish I could watch you fucking him as hard as you're doing me now. You'd have him spread out in front of you, Captain America naked and begging for you to ream him open. Want to see you take him deep, rake your fingernails down his chest, make him gasp. He'd be shaking and wordless underneath you, and then you'd wrap your hand around his cock and start jacking him off until you could feel his ass clench hard around you, Captain America coming hard around your dick."

Then the words and the motion are sending Phil over the edge with a loud, unintelligible cry, and Clint twists his hand around his own cock to bring himself off a moment later, filled and loved and sated.

A few minutes and a wet washcloth later, Phil's lying on his back, and Clint's on his side with his head resting on Phil's shoulder, one hand protectively covering the scar tissue near Phil's heart. (It's a bad habit, he knows, but neither of them have worked that hard to break it.) "So," he says.

Phil smiles and kisses the top of Clint's head. "That was nice."


&&&&


The next month, Clint's heading off for a solo assignment in the Philippines, nodding goodbye to the team members eating breakfast. Tony walks in as he's about to go, but he heads for Phil and tosses a broad hardback book on the table next to him. CAPTAIN AMERICA 1944-1945: THE COLLECTED PHOTOS, the tasteful white-and-blue title announces.

"Found this in some old boxes of my dad's," Tony says in his off-hand way, with a wicked glint in his eye. "Figured you might want something to keep you company if you get lonely at night."

Phil looks at the book critically, then back up at Tony. "This is Good at best. I've got a copy of my own in Fine condition."

"All the better to get stains on!" he says. (At the other end of the breakfast table, Steve is burying his head in his hands.) Then, with a jaunty wink at Clint, Tony leaves the room.

"I am so, so sorry," Steve says in the silence that follows.

Phil shakes his head, but his voice is warm. "Don't worry about it. If you start apologizing for Stark's misbehavior, you'll never stop."

When Clint returns home a week later, the book's sitting -- carefully buried but still barely visible -- on Phil's nightstand. Clint grins and starts flipping through it to see which pages stick together.


&&&&


Three in the morning after an intense mission, and Clint finds himself in the communal kitchen, throwing together leftovers and some eggs to make an omelet. Cooked chicken, green peas, a handful of cheese: it's not gourmet, but it would've been a treat growing up. He made more than he wants, so he thinks about taking some back to Phil, but the man generally needs all the sleep he can get.

"I'm gonna need some of that," Tony says from the doorway.

Clint turns smoothly and pretends that he completely heard him coming. "Need? You are not stealing my omelet for a science experiment."

Tony sighs with exaggerated heaviness. "My A.I. and my supersoldier boy toy have started conspiring, and now JARVIS won't let me do anything interesting if I haven't eaten in eight hours. Which was fifty minutes ago."

"You gave up trying to hack into your own computer after only fifty minutes?" Clint asks, reading between the lines, and gets rewarded with a glare. "Tisk, tisk, Stark. I think your dedication to being a workaholic is slipping."

"Ha ha, very funny, now give me some damn food."

Clint's pretty sure he likes Tony like this, off-kilter from sleep deprivation and hunger -- grouchy, yeah, but he'll take grouchy over self-satisfied arrogance any day. "What'll you give me for it?" he asks, before he can stop himself.

Tony glares harder; it just brings out the sleepless purple under his eyes. "How about free rent in the hottest skyscraper in New York?"

"Nah. Already getting that, and I'm pretty sure that if you tried to kick out the team, Pepper would kick you out first."

"Are we seriously doing this? Okay, I'll buy you a fucking pony."

"Nope, not interested. Phil won't let me have pets." Clint scoops up a forkful of cheesy eggs and eats it, moaning like a porn star with exaggerated pleasure.

"Jesus Christ. What do you want, sexual favors?"

Clint shrugs and leans against the counter, letting his chest arch back nonchalantly. He can feel his nipples press against the thin cotton of his t-shirt. "Pretty sure I'm already getting better ones than you could give."

"Really, Robin Hood? You have no idea how wrong you are."

Tony says the words challengingly, and Clint starts to dismiss it as one-upmanship. Then he really looks at Tony, and damn. Tony's watching him intently, eyes dark and serious. "-- Steve?" Clint asks, suddenly reduced to monosyllables.

"Doesn't mind. Tell you the truth, I'm pretty sure he'll want me to describe to him exactly how you taste."

Clint's throat feels parched, and his cock aches with sudden fullness. He and Phil have the same arrangement -- hook-ups are fine, as long as they tell each other and keep things safe -- but this doesn't feel like a random hook-up. This is Tony, and Steve, and Clint's had more than a couple of orgasms based on imagining one of them making this kind of offer. "Then I reckon you'd better find out," he says at last.

Tony glances around the empty kitchen, the dark skyline out the window. "So what are the odds of Black Widow walking in on us and putting a knife through my throat before I can explain?"

There's a brief moment when Clint considers and discards answering the question seriously. Neither of them seem that bothered by exhibitionism, after all. "I think the odds would decrease significantly if your throat was occupied by my cock."

"Heh," Tony smirks, but he navigates Clint until his back's against the refrigerator door, then sinks to his knees fluidly. He spends a few moments virtually nuzzling Clint's dick through his sweatpants, mouth open and wet, working over the cloth-covered bulge until Clint can feel just a hint of dampness. (Or maybe it's just his pre-cum, because holy Jesus is he hard.) Then Tony tilts his head upward and licks Clint's stomach, just above his waistline, which Clint is trying and failing to convince himself is not an erogenous zone.

Tony's tongue slides just below the waistband, teasing, and Clint can't suppress a full-body shudder. "Fuck," he mutters, and Tony just looks up at him wickedly.

"Not this time, cowboy." Tony seizes Clint's waistband with his teeth and drags it downward, and okay, Clint's got to give the guy points for style; the visual is fucking hot. Clint's not wearing anything under the sweatpants, so as soon as the waist is down past his hips, Tony lets it go and swallows Clint down all the way, until his throat's tight around Clint's dick and his lips are pressing at the edge of Clint's balls.

This isn't a slow seduction or a playful tease; this is serious cock-sucking, so Clint just lets go of himself for a few strokes, pumping into Tony's mouth without hesitation. Tony places one hand on Clint's hip to steady himself, thumb stroking over the skin with contrasting delicacy, and lets Clint fuck his throat until Clint's legs are trembling.

Clint's already close to coming when some sliver of rational thought reminds him that this was supposed to be some kind of challenge or contest, and so far, he's basically been riding the "Tony Stark is a sex god" train, which is a vehicle he avoids on principle. He's not about to opt out of an awesome blow job, though, so (based on what blood remains in his brain) the obvious alternative is to make Tony as off-kilter with desire as he is. And if there's one thing that Phil says Clint's good at, other than killing things, it's dirty talk.

"So pretty with your mouth around my dick," he says, and he tangles one hand in Tony's hair, just long enough to clutch and tug. "Bet you love getting on your knees for Steve, letting him fuck you in one hole or another. I've seen the way his hands wrap around you, big and strong, the way that you want to be used."

Tony's mouth is still a thing of intoxicating pleasure, but Clint's pleased to feel his strokes get shakier, less perfectly executed. "Getting distracted, hunh?" he asks, and uses his hand in Tony's hair as leverage to plunge in hard, feeling Tony's throat clutch around him. "Or just wishing that your boyfriend wasn't so innocent that he holds himself back from fucking you as hard as you deserve?"

Finally, Tony's mouth slides off him, tight with suction, and pulls away with a wet pop. He stands back up, and his eyes are narrow with challenge. "First," Tony says, seizing Clint's cock in his hand and jacking him off steadily, "you're speculating about possibilities, so the correct word is the subjunctive 'weren't.' Second," his hand slides faster, firmer, still slippery with saliva and pre-cum, "your speculations are incorrect. Steve didn't come into the twenty-first century innocent, and I think we've debauched each other to the point that he's past any sense of the word by now. And third," Tony bites Clint's neck, clean and sharp enough that it stings but won't bruise, "you're one to talk; I bet that you'd lick Steve's boots just for the chance to feel the imprint of his hand smacking your ass."

There's no one thing that pushes Clint over the edge, but between Tony's mouth on his throat, the mental image that Tony planted, and the masterful hand job Tony's still giving him, Clint comes hard and helpless all over Tony's t-shirt.

When they're done, Tony lifts his hand to his mouth and sucks the cum off them, finger by finger, and all Clint can do is gasp for oxygen and watch. "Mind: blown," Tony says cheerfully. Then he grabs a bowl, slides in half of the probably-cold omelet, and walks off, still grinning.

Clint takes a while to gather himself together, but by the time he's done eating, he's pretty sure that his brain finally calmed down enough to rest. Phil looks asleep when he slips back into their bedroom, but when Clint gets back into bed, his eyes blink half-open, his nostrils twitch slightly, and his lips curve in sleepy amusement. "You're going to have a story to tell me in the morning, aren't you?" he asks.

Clint lets Phil draw him against his side and makes himself cozy, brushing Phil's cheek with a kiss. "You have no idea."


&&&&


A couple of weeks later, Steve walks into the archery range, waits for Clint to lower his bow, and says, "I don't want to hurt your boyfriend."

Clint blinks. "Okay then, don't hurt my boyfriend. Problem solved."

"I don't know how to avoid doing it. That's exactly why I'm here."

And Jesus, what is it with Steve walking into Clint's practice time and wanting to have Conversations? Clint resigns himself to finishing up practice later, sets down the bow and quiver, and walks over to lean casually against the wall. "So talk to me, Cap. Why can't you avoid hurting Phil? He's pretty tough, if the whole 'surviving attack by a deity' part hadn't clued you in."

Steve glances at Clint, then looks away again. "Maybe I'd better back up a little. When Tony and I started seeing each other, we talked about other people, and he explained to me what an 'open relationship' meant. It's worked out pretty well for us so far. I mean, it's pretty much the same thing that people were doing well before my time, just with fewer lies -- you go out there and enjoy time with other folks, but then you come home to the guy or gal you want to spend your life with."

Clint nods encouragingly. (A small part of his brain is enjoying imagining just how freaked out Tony's going to be if he hears "spend your life with" on the security tapes.)

"I learned early on that it didn't always work out as well as the ideal," Steve continues. "Sometimes folks aren't comfortable with knowing that they're sharing you with someone else, and sometimes they just want more than you can give. So here's what's on my mind. I know that you and Phil are happy with each other, and I know -- or at least, Tony tells me --" and Steve blushes and ducks his head slightly, "-- that you both might be interested in trying something out together. So I'm asking you what Phil would want from me, and whether taking Tony seriously here is going to do more harm than good."

Clint doesn't answer for a few moments. Fact is, if this were anyone else besides Captain America, they'd be having a different conversation. Clint may worry about a lot of things, but one thing that life's taught him is that Phil Coulson will always, always be there for him. But this isn't anyone else; it's Steve Rogers, the guy who starred in Phil's first wet dream, the guy who inspired Phil to go into public service, the guy who still makes Phil giddy when he gives him a compliment.

"I think," he says slowly, "I think that Phil's always been really good at separating what he wants from what he can have. Yeah, he wants you. Always has, probably always will; you're his hero and his fantasy rolled up in one. But spending an evening with him won't change any of that, and it would give him some damn good memories to enjoy." Clint shrugs. "I may be his boyfriend, but he's an adult. Just make sure you're honest with him beforehand, and let him make his own decisions."

Steve nods as Clint talks, and he lets silence stretch out afterward, looking thoughtful. Then he turns and meets Clint's gaze head-on, eyes a shocking, clear blue. "You know that you're not his consolation prize, right?"

"I never said --"

"Number one: you are the goddamn love of that man's life. End of story. Number two: do you have any idea how much we all respect you for going out there into the field, day after day? You're the only one of us who's really human, and that makes you absolutely exceptional."

Clint shrugs, feeling awkward. Steve has this way of being unironically sincere that's refreshing, disarming, and utterly terrifying. "Yeah, well, I'm not the one who has fangirls lining up out the door to --"

His words get interrupted by Steve's lips. It's unlike any kiss that Clint's ever had: soft, unimposing, and unyielding as steel. It's the kind of kiss that makes Clint want to push Steve away, laugh it all off, but at the same time, Steve's bracketing him against the wall with his arms. Clint could still slip free if he wanted, yes, but it's -- it feels like an unspoken command to stay, and so Clint does.

He parts his lips slightly, curious to see what Steve is aiming for, and Steve echoes and furthers the gesture, opening his mouth enough to turn the kiss wet and eager. Steve still hasn't moved his arms -- not touching Clint, just surrounding him with quiet strength -- but Clint leans upward into his body, enjoying the way that he can feel each muscle outlined as he slides a hand up Steve's back. Steve nips at Clint's lip, and he responds with a full-body shudder that makes him grind his clothed erection against Steve's.

Steve doesn't take the bait, though; he just continues his exploration of Clint's mouth, sweet and maddeningly slow. "You're a wonder, Clint," he whispers into Clint's lips, and Clint nearly whimpers at how much he wants more, wants all of this. He doesn't know how Tony can handle having this all the time, this much honesty and trust and emotion, given so freely and without reserve.

They kiss, and they kiss, and every time that Clint thrusts up against Steve (whose body is clearly indicating interest in moving forward), Steve just gentles him with another kiss. Finally, Clint turns his head to the left, avoiding Steve's lips, so he can ask, "What do you want from this?" It's not sex, and it's not functionality as an asset; Clint's lost.

Steve smiles, sad and knowing, but he doesn't answer right away. "The first man I ever loved was a sharpshooter. He -- the Nazis broke him, deep inside. He could fight, afterward, but he couldn't remember how to love. The one thing I wish most that I'd said to him was that it didn't matter what he could or couldn't give me. What mattered was him. You matter, Clint. To me, to the team, and most of all to Phil. That won’t change."

Clint breathes in and out harshly. He turns back to Steve for one last kiss, then nods. "I'm gonna need some space."

"Anything you need," Steve says, and he emphasizes the words enough to make it clear that he doesn't just mean this afternoon. Then he steps out of the range, closing the door behind him and leaving Clint half-hard and deep in thought.


&&&&



Chapter 2: Bombs Bursting in Air



From: Iron Man <tony@stark.com>
To: Capsicle <steve.rogers@shield.org>, Agent <phillip.coulson@shield.org>, Legolas <clinton.barton@shield.org>

Subject: shooting tournament, bitches

seeing as the supervillains of the world seem to be hiding from this crappy weather, i have decided to hold a competition. a competition that involves shooting things.

assemble on the 47th floor this sat at 1pm. szechuan gourmet takeout will be there. if you are not there, the first contest will involve hunting you down.

inviting you three because natasha would win and kill us all in the process, and bruce has a fear of exploding things that is a disgrace to the scientific community.

yes, barton, you will have a handicap.

ts



&&&&


Clint steps into the first open door on the 47th floor, following the scent of chili oil, and bursts out laughing. The room's the size of a hotel ballroom, the sort of place to seat a small crowd for presentations, but all chairs have been removed. A huge display screen covers the far wall, and it's displaying the distinctive 8-bit opening screen of Duck Hunt. A table near the doorway bears what looks like the plastic Zapper guns Clint remembers from downtime in the barracks, nearly twenty years ago. "You have got to be fucking kidding me," he says slowly.

"Handicap number one," Tony says, and Clint turns to see that (of course) Phil and Steve got there early. "Give Barton a firearm that he hasn't used for hundreds of hours on the range."

"Fine, I get it, but you can't be serious. The accuracy on these is crap. I need something that'll hit what I aim it at."

Tony just smiles knowingly. Phil's looking a bit exasperated at the showmanship -- thank God -- but Steve's leaning back comfortably against the table, amused. "Try one out," Tony says. "Hit it, JARVIS."

As Clint picks up the gun, noting it's a bit heavier than expected, the screen switches to a familiar pixellated tableau of grass, tree, and sky. A brown dog -- god, he remembers hating that dog -- gets a scent and dives into the grass.

Then the duck flaps its way out of the grass, and Clint's ready to fire at the first twitch of movement, except that the fucking bird is flying out of the screen, racing for the exit. Clint's training kicks back in after the split-second of shock, and he shoots the duck neatly in its eye; it lets out a squawk and falls down, and the hologram dissolves into nothing a few feet above their heads. "That is," Clint starts, stops, and then just grins.

"Admit it," Tony says. "I'm sexy and you know it. Hey JARVIS, turn on auto-handicapping on Clint's gun."

"Engaging handicap," JARVIS says, and suddenly the gun's trembling in Clint's hands, as if he were holding it in a strong wind or a moving car. Another duck flies out of the grass, and Clint still hits it dead-on, but it takes an extra moment of focus and mental calculation to compensate.

"And that'll adjust automatically if you start kicking our asses too much. Tell me how awesome I am," Tony says, and he strides over to Steve and wraps an arm around his waist. "I'm awesome, right?"

Steve looks like he can't decide whether to kiss Tony's puppy-dog expression or avoid feeding his ego. "That was pretty keen," he says at last, and gives Tony's lips a quick peck.

"'Keen,'" Tony repeats to himself, then brightens. "So! Here are the rules. We'll start with a few free-for-all rounds without handicaps, to get everyone used to the guns. First person to shoot a duck gets points for it, double points for head shots. Don't worry, it'll get harder. Questions?"

Clint looks at the others. Phil's surveying the room, probably already calculating his best sniping position. Steve raises one hand, which makes Tony raise a pointed eyebrow. "Yes, Boy Scout Steve?"

"What's the prize for winning?"

"Great question. I thought about making the prize a night with me, but that's not really fair to me, because I can get nights with myself whenever I want, right?" (Clint can already see the furrow of a headache between Phil's eyebrows. ) "So the prize is this: winner gets to ask each of the losers to do one thing for him. Sound fair?"

"I am so looking forward to the new quiver you'll be making me," Clint says, and just like that, it's on.

Unsurprisingly, Clint kicks ass at the first rounds. What's more unexpected is everyone else's strong showing. Makes sense, Clint guesses; Steve's got enhanced everything, Phil's frighteningly competent with every weapon ever invented, and Howard Stark's son probably had semi-automatics instead of Legos to assemble. Regardless, Clint uses the time to catalog their styles and weaknesses, the shots they're more likely to fumble. He's not just the world's best marksman because he has a steady hand, after all.

After a break for food, the real fun begins. Each round introduces new challenges: reduced lighting, tiny birds, birds that can fucking teleport, and one memorable round in which a hundred swarming birds rise up like a cloud of locusts, and it's less a matter of beating the others to the shot as shooting, aiming, and shooting again.

An hour or two in, just as Clint's beginning to break a sweat, he takes aim at a duck with the size and hyperactivity of a hummingbird, and the room falls pitch black, save a blue glow from Tony's direction.

"Well, fuck," Tony says.

"Not part of the game, I take it?" Phil asks.

"Nope. But I don't hear any explosions, so that's a good start. JARVIS?" Silence.

A second glow lights up Phil's corner of the room. He holds up a bright white rectangle and quirks the corner of his lips. "Flashlight app."

"Careful, Steve, you might be losing your Boy Scout title," Tony says. The light of his arc reactor marks his movement across the room, toward the door. Clint's eyes have adjusted enough to see him grip the handle and pull it, but the hallway is just as dark as the room had been.

"Domo arigato, Mr. Roboto!" begins to play from Tony's direction. He pulls out his phone and jabs the screen. "Talk to me, JARVIS."

"Good afternoon, sir." JARVIS's crisp syllables are faint but clear through the speakerphone. "Avengers Tower is under no outside threat that I can ascertain. However, we are experiencing technical difficulties."

"Cause and nature?"

"The blue-energy experiments which you directed me to run appear to have caused a limited electro-magnetic pulse in the lower levels of the Tower. Standard and emergency power above the twelfth floor has been disrupted."

"Awesome," Tony says, his voice sharp with sarcasm. "Give me some good news."

"Repair crews are already en route, and the arc reactor powering the building was, like your own reactor, immune to the EMP's effects. I estimate one point eight hours until restoration of rudimentary power lines, depending on the extent of the circuit damage."

A metallic thud probably indicates Tony's head hitting the door. He takes a deep breath, then turns around; Clint can just see the contours of his face in the blue light. "All right, gentlemen. Looks like our choices are to walk down thirty-five flights of stairs in the dark, or to wait here until we get the elevators working. Given that we've got food, company, and a nightlight," he taps his chest, "my vote is for avoiding the Stairmaster routine."

A hand touches Clint's elbow, and he fights the urge to jump; damn Phil's ninja skills. Clint draws Phil in closer and kisses him at the base of his earlobe. "If Stark's going to drive you stir-crazy, I'll keep you company going down," he says softly into Phil's ear.

A quiver passes through Phil's body, something Clint recognizes as a muted laugh. He speaks back, just as softly. "My cell phone's on if anything comes up. But if I go down there, I'll have to get back to the projects I put on hold for this afternoon. Seeing just how quiet you can be when I do this?" Phil's hand ghosts over Clint's fly, and Clint bites his tongue to suppress a gasp. "Considerably more appealing."

"If I recall," Clint murmurs back, sliding his fingers around Phil's ass, "you're usually the one who has trouble keeping quiet."

A cough from across the room jolts them out of the moment. "Um, I don't want to interrupt, but I can ... pretty much hear everything," Steve says.

"Oooh, are Agent and Hawkeye getting naughty across the room?" Tony asks. "Tell me more, tell me more."

"We can go into a different room if you want," Steve says, pointedly ignoring Tony.

"I've got a better idea." As he speaks, Tony walks over to the corner where Steve's voice has been originating. "Let's have a nice friendly game of truth or dare."

"You are fucking kidding me," Clint says flatly. "Last I checked, Tony was the only one here who's a teenage girl."

"And what a mutually enjoyable time that last check was," Tony shoots back. "C'mon, it'll be fun. We can learn things about each other, like Agent's first name, and make Steve do things that'll make him blush, like saying a four letter word."

"Fuck you, Tony," Steve says mildly. "But I've got nothing to hide and nothing better to do."

"Wait, you know what truth or dare is?" Tony asks.

"Sounds like a party game that involves telling truths about yourself and doing potentially embarrassing things. Am I close?"

"Sexy and smart," Tony says, his voice coming from right next to Steve. A second later, Clint hears a soft intake of breath from their direction.

Before they can get too distracted, he says, "Sure, I'm in. It's not like I can't lie."

"Isn't that against the spirit of the 'truth' part?" Steve asks.

Phil's voice is low and amused. "Lying to you, Steve, would be a sin against Truth, Justice, and the American Way. Lying to Tony is more or less my job description."

"Agent Coulson, I am hurt," Tony says. "So you're in?"

"Fine. I doubt you can make me regret it too much."

"Challenge: accepted," Tony crows. "Okay, children, gather 'round over here."

By the dim light of Tony’s arc reactor, they relocate into a rough circle on the carpet -- Clint's leaning against Phil, and he suspects that Steve and Tony are doing the same -- and Tony explains the rules to Steve, with occasional interjections by Clint. "Agent!" he finally says. "As the resident figure of authority, you can go first."

Phil's hand tightens slightly on Clint's arm, but then his thumb resumes stroking soft over his skin. "Tony. Truth or dare."

Tony pauses for a moment, then says with confidence, "Truth."

A longer pause follows, so Clint tries to predict what Phil’s going to ask. On the one hand, Clint thinks, sex-and-relationships questions are traditional for the game. On the other hand, this is Phil, who can inject gravitas into any occasion -- except, of course, when he chooses to surprise everyone by not doing so. "Tell me this,” Phil says. “What's the most effective way to shut you up?""

"Distraction, obviously," Tony replies. "If I'm talking, it's because nobody has anything better to say, so give me something to occupy my attention. Or my mouth," he adds in a purr.

"I'll keep that in mind." Clint's pretty sure that the other two can't hear the amusement in Phil's firm tone. "Your turn."

"Great. You're up, Barton."

"Truth," Clint shrugs.

"Hottest sexual experience you've ever had. That didn't involve anyone in this room."

Clint laughs. "Way to jump right into the gutter. Hmm. So, before I got on the straight and narrow, I spent a while on the streets, doing whatever it took to stay afloat -- theft, construction work, sex work, small-time drug dealing, you name it. These four guys were living together, and one of them hired me as a birthday stripper for his roommate-slash-friend-with-benefits. They were friendly and pretty hot, so I ended up doing good business with them -- mostly drugs, but I didn't say no to being paid to have a good time with them. Anyway, this one time I was dropping off some E, and they invited me to stay and try some with them. Let's just say that I didn't leave the house until the next day. And that some of that acrobat training came in handy. It wasn't even that kinky, just bodies and sweat, all of us wanting to touch each other, going up and up in this crazy spiral of orgasms and cuddling."

When Clint stops talking, the room feels very still, and he realizes that even Phil's thumb stopped stroking. "Uh," he says, suddenly awkward. "Was that TMI?"

"No," Tony says, and his throat sounds a little dry. "I would not characterize the amount of detail you gave as 'too much.'"

Oh. "Sweet," Clint says, feeling smug. "Steve, truth or dare?"

"I, uh. Dare?"

"Ste-eeve," Clint says, prolonging his name with relish. "There's one tradition about Truth or Dare that Tony didn't mention. See, at some point in the game, one of the dares has to involve kissing someone else in the room.” He pauses for dramatic effect. “So I dare you to make out with Phil."

"Do I get any say in this?" Phil asks, dryly.

"Are you saying that you'd want to turn down kissing Steve Rogers?" Clint asks, and receives silence as his answer. "I figured. Chop chop, Cap."

Clint expects the attempt to be more clumsy in the near-darkness, but apparently the arc reactor is enough for Steve's super-vision. Steve crosses over and kneels in front of Phil, then places one hand on his shoulder. "You sure you're okay with this?"

"Very," Phil says, and Steve kisses him.

Clint wishes desperately for better light. This is no peck on the lips; Steve has one hand cradling the back of Phil's head, and Phil's arms are around his torso, pulling them tight against each other. In the silence of his and Tony's drawn breaths, Clint can hear the wet sounds slipping out of their mouths, the panting for oxygen, the occasional punctuation of suction lost or clacking teeth. Phil's making a low, keening sound, like he couldn't possibly get enough of this, and Clint can just imagine him memorizing every detail of the moment, the way he does with every good thing he doesn't think he's deserved.

Steve's body bucks up against Phil instinctively, and the movement tips them off-balance, sending Phil falling back against the floor until Steve catches and balances them with one arm. Their faces draw apart, and Steve extricates himself without saying a word, just breathing in and out, quick and uneven.

"You really did not need to stop," Tony says to Steve under his breath, and Steve exhales a single half-laugh.

"Yeah. That --" Steve begins, his voice cracking, then coughs to clear his throat. "That was. Wow. Tony, truth or dare?"

"Dare," Tony smirks.

"Good choice," Steve says, and then a grin breaks out on his face that is positively devious. "I dare you to maintain skin contact with Phil for the rest of the game."

"What? That's not a dare, that's a punishment."

"Watch your tongue, Stark," Clint glares. "You should be so lucky."

Steve just looks at Tony silently and pointedly. After a wordless battle of wills, Tony heaves a sigh and scoots over to the opposite side of Phil from Clint. "I am not holding your hand," he says, and instead puts one hand at the nape of Phil's neck, on the thin ribbon of bare skin between collar and hairline. "But speaking of awkward situations, I don't actually think you've gone yet. Truth or dare?"

"Truth," Phil says.

"Mmm, okay. How long have you and Legolas here been together, anyway? Before Loki attacked, you said you were seeing a lady cellist, and suddenly you're moving into Clint's floor of the tower a month later."

Clint and Phil glance at each other. "Does Bangkok count?" Clint asks.

"Definitely not."

"Okay, what about Provincetown?"

"That was for an op, so again, no. You going to let me answer?" Phil follows his question with a kiss to Clint's neck, softening his tone. Then he turns to Tony, who's been leaning awkwardly toward him to maintain his skin contact. "I was telling Pepper the truth. I'd known about my feelings for Clint for quite some time, but he was one of my two best agents, and initiating any kind of relationship would have meant that I couldn't have him working for me on my operations. So I tried dating outside SHIELD. Never really worked out for me. When I woke up after Loki's attack, Clint ... informed me that my feelings were reciprocated. And I figured that life's too short to push away what I want."

"I think I might be getting hyperglycemia by proximity," Tony mutters, but his voice is missing its usual sharp tone of cynicism.

Clint just pulls Phil towards him for a kiss, his hand overlapping with Tony's on Phil's neck. When he breaks the kiss, he doesn't let go; there's something nice about the casual contact, skin on skin on skin. "Love you too, babe," he says quietly.

Phil gives him a fond look, then focuses on Steve, who's now sitting alone on the other side of their small circle. "Steve, pick your poison."

"Truth, I suppose." He offers Phil a shy smile. "Not that 'dare' worked out that badly for me, last time."

"I'm glad to hear it," Phil says. "In that case, let me ask something that -- you don't have to answer it. I can ask a different question if you prefer."

"Whatever it is, I don't mind," Steve says.

After a brief pause, Phil nods. "All right. Clint said that you might be interested in trying something together. Here's my question: what would you be getting out of it?"

Clint's not sure which of them moves first, but he feels his fingers interlace with Tony's instinctively, a dual instinct of apprehension and reassurance. It takes a few moments of silence before Steve answers. "I figured out pretty fast that what most people call being a hero is just a matter of doing what you ought to do, instead of what you want to do. Took me a lot longer to realize the other side of that. When people think you're a hero, they're liable to assume that you only do things because you ought to do them, not because you want to."

Steve looks away for a few breaths, eyes fixed somewhere distant, and Tony reaches out his free hand to rest on Steve's knee. It feels like the completion of an electric circuit, Clint thinks: all four of them connected by touch, no longer alone in the dark. Then Steve continues. "All of you are my team. I want you all to be happy, and it seems like doing this would make you happy. But I know that's not enough for you to hear, because I'm not just a hero to you; I'm a man and a friend. As a friend, I -- I like you, Phil. You're probably the bravest and most loyal man I know. And I think I'd like getting to know the other parts of you, too. And as a man? Hell, the thought of -- well." It's hard to see color in the dim light, but Clint thinks Steve's blushing. "Thinking about you, like that, does things for me. Is that answer enough?"

The expression on Phil's face is -- Clint's made a career out of watching Phil's expressions, and this one is utterly new. He's reminded of an op they had once in Belarus, out in the woods, on the cusp of spring. He sat in his perch for hours, trying not to let shivering mar his aim, and while he waited, he watched the ice thaw on the surface of a stream. One crack would thread through the white, then another, until a new chunk would crumble away and reveal a fresh patch of running water. Phil's face is softening into springtime.

"Can I?" Phil asks, and Clint wants to say yes, of course, and also please don't forget me, but he knows he wasn't the one being asked.

"All right," Steve says. Tony's fingers are tight around Clint's.

Phil doesn't move.

Clint sees Tony squeeze Steve's knee -- just a flicker of a movement in the darkness, but then Steve shifts forward, and he's on his knees flush against Phil's body, kissing him hard and eager. Steve's momentum carries the two of them backward, and Clint and Tony soften but don't break the fall, and then all four of them are horizontal, with Steve pressing Phil to the floor with mouth and arms, hips making urgent half-thrusts.

They're all so close that it's hard to see anything, but Clint can feel and hear everything -- the way that his hand pillows Phil's head, feeling each arch and shudder; the needy murmur of Phil's voice against Steve's lips, whispering words lost between their kisses. Clint's turned on, incredibly so, but this is for Phil and Steve, so he just holds Phil's body close to his and wraps his free arm loosely around Steve's back, guiding everyone's limbs into something approaching comfortable.

He feels a slight twinge of disconnect from the bodies wrapped in his arms, present but not involved -- and then Phil breaks away from Steve's kiss and tilts his head toward Clint, saying, "Clint?" in a small, undone voice that somehow conveys thank you and I love you and I need you here too. So Clint leans in and breathes the familiar scent of Phil's hair and skin, and then he tugs Phil's earlobe between his teeth, enjoying the whimper it elicits.

Clint works his way down Phil's neck, leaving lingering, wet kisses and sucking gently on the skin where he can feel Phil's pulse beneath his lips. "So fucking gorgeous," he whispers in Phil's ear, and Phil's mouth is occupied with Steve's, and his hands are curved shamelessly around Steve's ass, but his breath stutters and his hips jerk upward helplessly.

Somewhere on the other side, Tony's doing filthy things to Steve's collarbone and raking his fingernails down Steve's back, muttering "that's right, baby," and "god, you're sexy like this." Steve and Phil are still rutting against each other like it's their last chance, their kisses growing rougher and less precise; Clint can feel Phil trembling the way he does when he's close to coming, still fully clothed.

"I," Phil pants, "I need --"

The lights come on.

At first, nobody moves. The fluorescent lights are blinding, and Clint blinks his eyes to adjust. By the time he can see without squinting, Tony's already pulled himself away, standing up from the floor. "Wow. That was." Tony takes a steadying breath; Clint's never seen him quite this rattled. "So I should definitely get down and see what happened. Which I'm mostly saying because I don't want you to think I'm running away. Okay? Great."

Tony's halfway out the room when Steve gets up, giving Phil an apologetic look. "I should make sure he's doing okay. But -- thank you." Steve's shirt is rumpled, his hair's a mess, and his lips are pink and still damp -- from Phil's lips, Clint thinks, and somehow that makes them even more erotic. Steve looks ravished, and the khaki slacks he favors aren't doing anything to hide his body's interest; Clint's half-tempted to tackle him back down and finish what they started. Before he can act on the temptation, though, Steve's following Tony out into the hall.

That leaves Phil, now propped up on his elbows, and Clint. Phil looks at least as despoiled as Steve, but on him, it's a look that Clint's happily familiar with. "Hey there," he says, and gives Phil a gentle kiss. "How're you doing?"

"I'm fine," Phil says automatically. He still looks stunned. Phil lifts a hand to his face and traces his thumb over his own lips, first bottom, then top. "I'm fine," he repeats.

Clint grazes one hand over the still-prominent erection in Phil's pants. "Want me to finish what we started? I mean, I know that blue balls aren't supposed to be fatal, but you're looking like you're shooting for an exception."

That brings a small smile to Phil's lips. "Yeah." Then he turns and really looks at Clint, and his voice snaps back into focus. "Yeah. Can you -- can you use your hands? I'd really like to be kissing you right now."

"Can do," Clint says, returning the smile. This, he knows. He climbs over Phil, straddling his legs, and gently undoes his pants and slides down his briefs. Phil's achingly hard, leaking pre-cum. Clint slides three fingers into his own mouth, licking them nice and wet, then grasps Phil's cock, savoring the muted gasp in response.

"Love you," Clint says, and he bends down to kiss Phil. They kiss long and slow, eyes open, so that he can see Phil's pupils widen and darken with each stroke. "Love you." Clint twists his hand around Phil's dick, firm and patient, falling easily into the rhythm they've both learned well. Phil's eyes never leave Clint's face, and he doesn't say anything but the occasional quiet whimper, then a long, voiceless sigh as he comes into Clint's hand.

Clint wipes his hand off on his own t-shirt, then settles back down to embrace Phil, holding him through the aftershocks. Only once Phil's breathing has returned to a steady cadence does he turn to speak. "What happened earlier was pretty remarkable. I hope you don't regret any of it. But the best part is always going to be coming home to you."

And Clint knows that what he's saying, in the ways that Clint needs to hear it most, is I love you too.


&&&&



Chapter 3: Proof Through the Night



Two weeks pass. Clint doesn't think that Steve and Tony are avoiding him and Phil -- they still smile when they run into each other in the common areas, chat over breakfast -- but they don't initiate anything either. Meanwhile, the heat wave pulls back for a few days of cool breezes, then redoubles its efforts, drenching the city in a simmering haze. The news anchors make jokes about the Avengers battling global warming, but at least the real supervillains seem to be staying indoors. Clint goes on mission to Argentina, a milk run that they send him on because he's got nothing better to do, and he'd pulled a few strings to get sent somewhere chilly.

When Clint gets back, it's midday and the Tower is quiet. JARVIS informs him that Phil, Steve, and Natasha are at a strategic planning meeting (translation: boring and non-essential) on the Helicarrier, while Tony and Bruce are in their respective workshops. Clint drinks a beer and scans through his e-mail, but he's feeling itchy, starved for human contact, so he makes two sandwiches and heads down to Tony's lab.

"Oh good, you brought breakfast," Tony says when Clint steps in.

Clint rolls his eyes, but hands the sandwich over anyway. "Had fun with the mad science while I was gone?"

"Oh yeah, baby." Tony's smile is wide, a little manic, and Clint wonders just how much sleep the man's been getting. "Bruce got me thinking about the potential applications of a fullerene sheath for the suit -- with the right configuration of nanotubes, we can enhance durability while absorbing and storing photovoltaic energy. I'd be Superman."

Clint takes a bite of his own sandwich. He shouldn't find Tony's enthusiasm so cute. "I have no idea what you just said, but I'm happy for you?"

"Yeah, sorry, Steve and Pepper keep telling me that I have Bruce around to appreciate my brilliance properly, so I shouldn't try to impress other people by giving actual information about what I do. What can I do for you?"

"Nothing, really, just looking for company." Clint shrugs, then remembers a thought he'd had in Argentina and flagged in his mind for later. "But now that I'm here, I was wondering something. Is it true that Steve was literally born on the fourth of July?"

"If his Army enlistment papers are telling the truth. I asked him once, and he just cocked his head and said, 'If I were going to fake my birthdate, would I pick something that obvious?' But I'm pretty sure that Steve's secretly trolling us half the time, so who knows."

"Fair enough. So are you going to be doing anything special?"

"Doing anything special for -- crap." Tony's face suddenly goes pale. "JARVIS, what's today's date?"

"July 2nd, sir."

"Oh, good," Tony exhales in relief. "I thought it might've been tonight or something. Yeah, I'll figure out something nice for him."

"We could do a joint thing for him and Phil," Clint says. When Tony tilts his head inquisitively, he supplies, "Phil's birthday is the eighth."

"Wait, Agent has a birthday? Or do you mean that's the day he emerged from his factory?" Clint narrows his eyes. "Kidding. Really. Anyway, as much as I'd love an occasion for drinking and scantily clad guests, neither of them seems like the party type."

"That was ... actually almost thoughtful. I'm impressed."

"Because you're the model of polite tact yourself?"

"Okay, can't really argue that one," Clint grins. "What about a smaller kind of party, if you know what I mean?"

Tony leans back against his workbench, eyes crinkled with wicked amusement. "You're going to have to spell it out for me, since I'm pretty sure that 'have sex with Captain America' is more like a daily job perk than an annual sacrifice for me."

"Didn't say it would be with you. I mean, you'll be there, and so will I, but I'm guessing they'd both be happy to get a nudge in each other's direction." A pleasant thought shivers through Clint. "And I'm pretty sure that Phil would really enjoy tying me up and making me watch him and Steve fucking. You too, if you're into it."

"I'm liking this idea more and more. Set everything up, push them at each other, and put ourselves at their mercy?"

"Yeah, you and me together would basically be the best birthday present ever."

Tony laughs. "You're almost as modest as me. I like it. When are you thinking?"

"Split the difference?" Clint offers. "Steve's the fourth, Phil's the eighth, so we'll plan for July sixth?"

"It's a date." Hammering out all the details, limits, and preferences takes some time, and it doesn't help that Clint's brain is busy supplying him with mental images of everything the night might involve. He can't wait.


&&&&


After being convinced that no, Steve would not want a fireworks show in his honor, Tony's spending the holiday treating him to a Fourth of July picnic on Tony's yacht, then watching the Macy's fireworks from a prime spot on the Hudson itself. Clint and Phil are watching from their bedroom; the outside view's still pretty spectacular through the windows, and the view inside the room is even better, in Clint's completely biased opinion.

When Clint tells Phil about Tony's plan for Steve's birthday, Phil raises an eyebrow. "That's impressively low-key for Tony."

"Looks like Captain America's been rubbing off on him," Clint can't resist saying.

"That was terrible."

"Whatever. You love me because I say out loud the terrible jokes that you're already thinking."

Phil places a kiss on Clint's forehead. "Among other things." Then they're too busy kissing lazily to talk for a few minutes.

Eventually, Phil props his head up on one elbow. "So should I be worried about what you're planning for the sixth?"

Clint doesn't bother asking how Phil knows, because Phil knows everything. "You'll love it," he says.

"I wasn't actually talking about myself."

"Oh." Clint lets himself think for a few minutes before he answers, knowing Phil won't hurry this conversation. "Nah. I wasn't sure how I'd feel about it until it actually happened, that time in the dark, but that was ... good. Really good. I guess I just needed to know that even if you could have him, you'd still want me."

"I did, and I do, and I will." Phil doesn't say always -- but maybe he doesn't have to.

The words hang between them, and Clint feels them soak in and take root as the sky outside dazzles with red, white, and blue. He lets himself enjoy the moment, and then he lets himself break it. "Besides, you two were fucking hot together."

Phil shakes his head, a smile crinkling his eyes, and tackles Clint to the mattress with a wrestler's hold and a hard, dirty kiss.


&&&&


The evening of July 6th starts with dinner at Hassan's Shawarma Palace, because Phil was busy lying in an ICU the first time they went, and they haven't had a chance to go back. Tony's bought the place out for the night, so they don't have to worry about paparazzi, and a particularly large tip helped convince Hassan to overlook the pitchers of sangria from Pampano Botaneria. Clint knows that Phil suspects what's planned for later, but he doesn't say anything; they just enjoy a relaxed dinner and gossip about the Fantastic Four.

(Tony thinks that Reed Richards has a thing for Johnny Storm. Clint and Phil just exchange a look; when Tony asks them why, Clint explains that it's not very shocking that Tony believes an arrogant engineering genius would be attracted to a Steve look-alike. Tony narrows his eyes, and Steve just laughs.)

The sangria isn't very strong, just enough to relax everyone, and it tastes of summer and shared laughter. By the time they head back to the Tower, Phil's suppressing his smiles less, and Tony's eyes burn dark when they linger over Steve's body. Clint's happy in a way that he doesn't recognize, a diffuse, safe joy. He supposes that this is what family feels like.

Clint and Tony had decided on Tony's bedroom, since he's got the ridiculous California King, and they take the private elevator straight to his suite. Before stepping into the bedroom, Tony stops and turns to Steve and Phil. "Clint and I decided to plan a little something for your birthdays."

"God help us," Phil says sotto voce. Tony ignores him.

"Here's the plan. You two have been eyefucking each other without doing anything about it, and our gift is to help you get over yourselves. Erotic facilitators, if you will. Not that either of us would say no to joining in."

"If that's what you want," Clint adds, wondering how he got stuck as the voice of reason. "No pressure or expectations, if you don't want to do this."

Phil's face is -- adorable, really. He's stuck somewhere between "unflappable, mature adult" and "fanboy exploding with excitement," and the mixture of the two seems to involve twitchiness and a grin he can't tamp down. He glances over to Steve, who (for once) is the more unflappable of the two, wearing a calm smile.

"I'm in if you are," Steve says.

"I." Phil swallows. "Yes."

"Great! All right, everybody this way." Tony leads them into the bedroom; it's Clint's first time there, but somehow the clean, modern lines look exactly like he imagined. A desk near the bed is loaded with supplies: lube and condoms, unsurprisingly, but also coils of rope, a selection of dildos and butt plugs, latex gloves, and a couple of adjustable cock rings. Nothing on the kinky-pain-causing side of things, which Clint figures is probably wise until they've had more extensive conversations.

"Impressive," Phil says, in a voice that sounds more amused than impressed.

"Of course it is; this is me," Tony smirks. "So go on, you crazy kids. I know you've thought about this before."

Phil and Steve exchange a look. Tony already told Clint, back when they planned this, that Steve liked to take charge in the bedroom, and Clint thinks Phil’s reading the same thing in the tranquil control that Steve radiates. "You take point, and I'll provide support and back-up?" Phil asks.

"Only you, Phil," Steve says, and he softens it with a fond smile. "Come here." Steve steps toward Phil, tips Phil's head back with his palm, and kisses him thoroughly. With every second of the kiss, Clint can see Phil's shoulders relaxing, his body becoming more fluid and responsive.

Eventually Steve pulls his lips away. "I have some ideas on what to do with you, and I bet you do too, but what do we want to do with them?" He tilts his head toward Tony and Clint.

Phil looks consideringly at Clint. "My hawk always says he sees best at a distance. Tony, bring over that chair and tie him to it, wrists and ankles."

"You are a bastard," Clint says, entirely approvingly. "Want me dressed or undressed?"

"Just like that, I think. For now." Clint shivers, then sits down in the chair that Tony's brought over -- close enough to see everything, but too far to touch. Tony kneels in front of him to tie Clint's wrists to the chair arms and his ankles to the chair's front legs. The ropes are silky-soft and thick; by the time Tony's tugged the last knot tight, Clint thinks that he might be able to get free with sufficient time or sharp implements, but not without effort.

"They look good like that," Steve says. "Tony, stay there. Remember what you told me happened in the kitchen, a few weeks ago? This time, I want to watch you doing it."

"Yes, sir," Tony murmurs, just too soft to be entirely flippant. He looks up at Clint from between his spread legs, all touseled black hair and coy gaze.

"You heard him," Clint prods.

Tony doesn't respond verbally, just nuzzles Clint's denim-clad dick. He reaches up and undoes Clint's jeans, sliding down his boxers until the elastic cups Clint's balls, then dives in with enthusiasm, sucking and licking at Clint's cock like it's Christmas in July. It's like last time, except it's not like it at all, because Clint tries to put his hand on Tony's head and he can't, he can't do anything but grip the chair and buck his hips up into Tony's mouth.

Clint pulls his gaze up from Tony's lips to see what Steve and Phil are doing. Steve's laid out on the bed, eyes fixed on Clint and Tony; Phil lies next to him. Phil caresses Steve’s clothed body slowly, reverently, planting kisses on the patch of skin between hair and collar, but he looks back at Clint and gives him a reassuring nod.

As if he notices that Clint's attention is wandering, Tony boosts his efforts, working over Clint in wet, tight spirals. Clint's rock hard, already close, when Steve says, "Stop, Tony. You're doing well, and I don't want him to finish yet. Come over here."

Clint can't stop the whine of protest from leaving his throat, but Phil just raises one eyebrow: tough luck, but no. So Tony leaves him like that, cock slick and bobbing in the air, legs splayed open and tied in place, and Clint's pretty sure that he's never been this turned on in his life.

"Thanks," Steve says to Tony. "You can wait right there for now. Touch yourself if you want, but don't come yet. I'll tell you when I want to use you further." Then he turns to Phil, and his voice still has a Captain America tenor, but with an added note of shy hesitance. "I'd like to watch you undress."

Phil's eyes widen, as if he honestly didn't expect to be asked that, but he begins to unbutton his shirt. A few buttons down, he hesitates. "Before you say anything, I was young at the time." (Clint doesn't say "I already warned them that I'd murder them if they laughed," because he figures that Phil would only find that more embarrassing.)

"Go on," Steve says. In his peripheral vision, Clint can see Tony stroking his own cock, light and casual, as the two of them watch the main action.

After a pause, Phil keeps unbuttoning, then pulls the shirt off. He's wearing a sleeveless undershirt, thin and low-necked enough that everyone can see the round Captain America shield tattooed on Phil's chest. It's small, maybe three inches across, and it rests directly above Phil's heart. A jagged scar, pink with age but still puckered, rips through the shield like a bolt of lightning.

The sight of it still makes Clint's breath catch sometimes. He can't imagine what Steve and Tony must be thinking.

Steve just moves over to crouch before Phil, tugging off the undershirt, and he places a kiss on the scar, right where it bisects the center of the shield. Then his lips part, and his tongue begins to lave over the tattoo, tracing its curves with open-mouthed kisses. Clint knows from experience that the healed skin is a sensory minefield; some patches are numb, but others feel every sensation twice as sharply. Judging by Phil's quick gasps, Steve's finding every one of those places.

While Steve continues to press kisses to Phil's chest, his hands undo Phil's pants and slide them off, along with his briefs. Phil already toed off his shoes and socks, so he's lying next to Steve, naked and perfect, clearly too lost in the sensation of Steve's tongue to feel the slightest shame. Steve grasps Phil's cock loosely, just holding it for a moment, and Phil lets loose a wordless groan.

"Can I --" Phil starts, clearly fighting for self-control. "Can I return the favor?"

"I'd like that," Steve says.

Phil doesn't kiss Steve while he's undressing him. He doesn't say anything. He just begins by unbuttoning Steve's shirt -- plaid and old-fashioned and perfectly him -- button by methodical button, his eyes drinking in every inch of skin. Phil's memorizing this, Clint realizes: mapping the fantasies of his adolescence to concrete reality. From the look of awe on Phil's face, reality's even better than he had imagined.

Steve's clearly reading the same thoughts in Phil's face, and maybe this moment is when Clint starts to love him, because Steve's expression is tender, respectful, and just as awed -- as if he doesn't know why he's receiving this worship, but he'll do anything to live up to it. When Phil finishes unbuttoning Steve's shirt, Steve pulls him in for a gentle kiss.

Whatever Steve tastes in that kiss, it makes him shudder; Clint sees his hands move impatiently to his belt buckle, then stop when Phil gives him a chastening look. Then Phil continues his patient exploration: unbuckles the belt and pulls off Steve's undershirt, eyes tracing every contour of Steve's (admittedly stunning) musculature. Phil pauses his divestment, tracing one finger around Steve's pectorals, and murmurs, "Wow."

(Tony's still on his knees, lazily jacking himself off. When Clint spares a glance for him, he's wearing an expression of, "fuck yeah, I win at life." Looking at that landscape of smooth, golden skin, those tight nipples and broad shoulders, Clint can see Tony's point.)

Phil slides off Steve's pants and underwear with appropriate veneration, and then they're both nude -- Steve on his back, propped up on elbows, and Phil crouched above him -- and both erect.

"Anything particular we should put on the agenda?" Steve asks, and Phil gives him a shaky laugh.

"How good is your refraction period?"

Steve grins in return. "Good enough."

"In that case, I'd -- I'd really like it if you'd fuck me, eventually. But for now, can I taste you?"

"Absolutely," Steve says, but then he gets a speculative look. "Tony. While Phil's doing that, I could use your help getting him nice and open. Fingers if you prefer, but I bet we could make him fall apart even faster if you eat him out."

"On it," Tony says, voice low and eager. He grabs a bottle of lube and a glove, then climbs onto the bed.

Phil's shifting his position down Steve's body, pausing along the way to lick at Steve's nipples and leave them hard and gleaming-wet. Clint's never seen Steve naked before, and as Phil's mouth slides down past Steve's stomach, it confirms what he'd suspected: below his head, Steve's completely and beautifully hairless. On his chest, it makes him look surreally angelic; at his groin, with his cock jutting out obscenely long and rosy from bare flesh, he looks more like a filthy porn star.

(Clint's so hard himself that he can feel his body thrumming like a taut bowstring, and the fact that he can't even touch his own dick is excruciating. He wonders whether he can come untouched; it's never happened before, but the way things are going, he wouldn't be surprised.)

Then Phil finally reaches Steve's cock, and he just sinks his head down, takes it in all the way, and swallows eagerly with his eyes shut, as if in prayer. Clint's pretty sure that he's actually nuzzling Steve's thigh with his cheek, while Steve's genuinely trembling from the effort of keeping his body in check. Phil slides back up, then begins to caress Steve's cock with his tongue, drawing long, teasing lines up and down the hard length. When he gets to the head, he swirls his tongue around it like a lollipop, then flutters against the underside. Clint knows these movements, has enjoyed them himself in the past, but seeing them on Steve helps him appreciate the sheer enthusiasm that Phil has for cocksucking, the way he smiles around the shaft between his lips.

Clint had almost forgotten about Tony when Phil suddenly jerks and groans loud around Steve's dick. He shifts his attention back down the bed, and yeah, Tony's lapping at Phil's ass with his tongue, sliding it up and down Phil's crack and circling delicately around Phil's hole, coy and filthy all at once. Meanwhile, Phil's resumed sucking Steve off, but he's less restrained now, practically fucking his mouth on Steve's dick. Steve responds to the increasing pace, letting his hips buck upward and thrust deep into Phil's throat, and his hands loosely cup the back of Phil's head.

Tony pulls back -- God, the sight of Phil's ass pink and damp and beard-burned -- and returns with lube-slick fingers, sliding a single finger into Phil's hole, then curving it to make Phil practically scream around Steve's dick. And that's it -- the vibration and urgency, or maybe just the sight of Phil undone with desire -- and Steve's gasping, "Phil, I'm going to --", and Phil just sucks harder until Steve's shuddering beneath him with jerky movements, and then he swallows it all down.

When Phil lifts his head up, there's a small trickle of Steve's cum sliding down from the corner of his mouth; Phil gasps a few breaths, throat raspy, and licks his lips clean. Clint thinks he might be about to die from sheer arousal.

Phil starts to move out of the way, but Steve reaches up and tugs him back down; one exquisitely muscled arm holds each of Phil's arms in place. "Keep going, Tony," Steve says. "Get him nice and loose for me."

Clint knows that Phil's never liked being restrained, but this looks more like he's keeping Phil secure for Tony to lick and finger-fuck, suspended above Steve's sweat-damp body, and that is something that Phil seems to enjoy thoroughly. Tony adds a second slick finger into Phil's ass, then bends down and begins to lick around the rim; the touch of his tongue to taut, hot skin has Phil's knees nearly buckling, while unvoiced expletives animate his lips. Tony just keeps sliding his fingers in and out, pushing deep enough to tease at Phil's prostate, while his tongue strokes and moistens around the edge. Phil's cock is still hanging free between his legs, rock-hard and gleaming at the tip with pre-cum, and god, Clint wishes he could taste it right now.

One more finger and a thrust inward, and Phil arches his back shamelessly and gasps, "-- stop." Immediately, Steve releases his hold on Phil's arms, and Tony pulls away from his ass. Phil breathes, in and out, then says, "That's good. Really good. But I don't have super-soldier stamina, and I don't want to come until Steve's inside me. I'm ready."

Steve looks at him carefully and glances down at his own (not inconsiderable) girth. "I don't want to hurt you."

Phil meets his gaze firmly. "I'll be fine."

"No offense," Tony says, "but I think your judgment might be a little compromised right now. Want me to get the cock ring, Cap?"

"I like that plan better," Steve nods. "One of the, uh, toys, too. Something medium-sized."

"Fantastic," Tony says with approval. (As he passes by Clint's chair, Tony skates his fingertips over Clint's clothed inner thighs, carefully avoiding actual contact with his cock. "Bastard," Clint grits out, and Tony just grins and winks.) By the time he's returned from the table, holding a black cock ring and a pale, realistically-sculpted silicone dildo, Steve's flipped Phil onto his back and positioned a pillow beneath his hips.

"Want to do the honors?" Tony asks. Steve does, and he fastens the cock ring on Phil, who's lying back with a half-dazed look on his face. (It's a good look on him, Clint thinks.) Then Tony slicks up the dildo and begins to work it into Phil's ass, slow and easy, while Phil pulls his knees toward his chest to ease the way. Steve, meanwhile, lies on his side next to Phil, stroking his chest and brushing his thumb over Phil's nipples. When Steve's mouth latches onto Phil's neck and bites down, Phil lets out an inchoate groan.

"Clint," Phil pants, "talk to me." Clint realizes that this is like the inverse of all their ops together: Phil needs his voice to ground and stabilize him, let him know which way is up.

"You're so damn gorgeous like this, Phil," Clint says. "Love seeing you spread open, watching your ass get filled up so tight. God, seeing you like that with Steve Rogers, marking you up, it's like all those fantasies you shared with me. Love the way your body responds to his, the way your nipples harden at his touch, the way your stomach goes tight at his fingertips. And Jesus, your cock is beautiful, so hard I can see every vein, wrapped up in a bow until you're ready for Steve to make you come. Tony, angle that up a bit, so you're just grazing over his prostate -- yeah, like that, Phil, I love hearing you moan."

By now, Tony's pumping the dildo in and out of Phil's ass with long, full strokes, and Clint can see the way that the toy's bulbous head stretches Phil's rim every time, half catching and making his legs jerk with overwhelming sensation. "Almost there, Phil," Steve says, and then he straddles Phil's chest. "Want to get me nice and wet?"

Phil nods, too far gone for words, and Steve leans forward and feeds his cock into Phil's mouth. Clint remembers belatedly that he's still supposed to be talking. "Fuck, Phil, this has to be the hottest thing I've ever seen -- Tony fucking your ass open with a toy while Captain America presses you into the mattress and rides your face. I'm so turned on for you, babe, leaking all over my jeans. Driving me crazy."

"Seriously, Steve, I'm pretty sure that if you don't fuck him soon, Phil's dick might fall off," Tony interjects.

Steve glances back at Tony and casts him a grin. "Wouldn't want that to happen." He slides his cock back from Phil's lips, gives them a soft kiss, and goes down to take Tony's place.

"Anything I can do?" Tony asks. He's left the dildo half-buried in Phil's hole, and Clint dazedly watches it slide outward of its own volition, slick and excruciatingly slow.

Phil speaks up, voice ragged. "You could jerk yourself off while you watch, then come onto Clint's face. He likes it when he gets all messy and marked-up." (It's true, even if Clint always feels a little ashamed to ask for it.)

"So not a hardship," Tony grins. He scoots to the edge of the bed, sprawls with his legs wide, and goes back to stroking his own cock. He'd pulled off his pants some time back, but he's still clothed from the waist up, which makes the sight perversely more obscene.

After giving Tony an appreciative once-over, Steve turns back to the pornographic sight in front of him. Phil's sweaty and breathing swiftly -- lips swollen from cocksucking, chest and neck scattered with red bite marks, cock full and dark above its leather band, legs held up and splayed open to put his ass on display. Steve pulls the dildo out, leaving a shiny dribble of lube in its wake, unrolls a condom onto himself, and positions the head of his cock at Phil's ass. Smoothly and without hesitation, he sinks into Phil's body.

Clint can see Phil stretching and filling to accommodate Steve, but just as beautiful is the way that Phil's eyes are rolled back, mouth open in a voiceless cry that's somehow also a smile. This is it -- this, Phil told him once, was the adolescent fantasy that convinced him he was gay -- and Steve's thrusting balls-deep into Phil with an affectionate crinkle to his eyes, something that says I want to be here even more strongly than the aroused tremble of his limbs.

Steve's thighs are a fucking marvel of human achievement, Clint thinks, watching them flex and stretch as Steve pistons into Phil, and Steve's ass is almost as miraculous. He can see Tony's eyes fixed on it, too, hungry and possessive and proud. The room's air is thick with sweat and the scent of cum, and everyone's ragged breathing isn't enough to mask the slippery squelch of Steve's cock penetrating Phil, of Tony's hand bringing himself off, fast and desperate.

Clint isn't sure how long they hover at that altitude, where he's so hard he could cry, but he's too busy drinking in every detail of the scene to complain. All he knows is that eventually Steve grits through his teeth, "I'm getting -- close --"

"Yeah, okay," Phil breathes, and he unstraps his cock ring with one hand. "Feel free -- ah -- feel free to pound me as hard as you want, Steve, I want to feel you when I'm --"

His voice breaks off as Steve redoubles his efforts, thrusting into Phil with a force that has to hurt, but Phil's riding on a cloud of bliss, his head thrown back and utterly undone. He wraps one hand around his rigid cock, gives it the barest handful of strokes, and then he's coming so hard that he arches off the bed, white cum spattering across his chest.

The pressure on Steve's dick, as Phil clenches erratically around a cock that large, has to be incredible, and from the wordless groan that Steve gives and the way his pace quickens even further, he's coming too. They ride out their orgasms to the limit, savoring the final aftershocks, before Steve slumps down next to Steve, pulls out, and disposes of the condom. "That was -- wow. Thank you." Clint's not sure if Steve's thanking Phil for his participation, or himself and Tony for their planning. Doesn't matter, really, because everyone's happy.

Everyone besides his dick, anyway. Now that Phil and Steve are puddled on the bed, his body's reminding him of just how badly Clint's been wanting to come. He tugs fruitlessly at his ropes, then casts a pleading glance at Phil.

"Haven't forgotten about you, babe," Phil says, voice languid and blissed-out. "My turn to watch now. If Tony gives you a hand, can you wait until he paints your face before you come?"

"Think so," Clint says, then adds, "as long as it's soon."

"Patience, young Padawan," Tony smirks, and Clint's about to chew him out for being a geeky asshole when swiftly, gloriously, Tony wraps his free hand around Clint's cock. "God, the look on your face, watching them," Tony says, low and fierce, while he jacks off his cock toward Clint's face. "Next time I'll have to see how long we can keep you on the edge, make you so desperate you're begging to be touched."

Clint should've expected Tony to talk as much as he does, but the words and Tony's slick-pumping hand and the way he's exposed, everyone watching him lose control, threaten to overwhelm him. "Tony, I can't -- I'm gonna --"

"No," Tony says, and removes his hand from Clint's cock to give him a light slap across the face. "Now open your mouth and ask me nicely."

"Fuck you," Clint says, meeting Tony's dark, hungry eyes. "Like you don't want to come onto me, watch me lick your spunk off my face." Clint swipes his tongue over his lips, long and languid, and enjoys the way that Tony's hips jerk toward him in response.

"Tony," Steve says, just that single word, and Tony closes his eyes and smiles and comes all over Clint's face. Some of it drips into Clint's mouth, and he licks it up and smiles prettily at Tony, blinking the thick droplets out of his eyelashes.

"My kingdom for a camera," Tony mutters, still panting as he comes down from his orgasm, but he crouches beside Clint and wraps his hand back around his dick. And finally, finally, Clint can just let go and fly, feel the cum on his face and the sweat trickling down his neck, close his eyes and see after-images of Steve thrusting into Phil relentlessly, enjoy the slick up-and-down of Tony's hand, and god, he's coming, he's coming into Tony's hand so hard and long that the world fades to a starburst of absolute bliss.

Clint doesn't pass out. He doesn't. He just rests his eyes and breathes for a few minutes, vaguely aware of the others moving around him. When he opens them again, Phil's untying him from the chair, hands careful and sure with the knots. As each wrist and ankle is loosened, Phil strokes the skin underneath, easing back sensation where the ropes have left a red-white imprint. Then, once Clint's free, Phil grabs a warm, damp washcloth, wipes Clint's face clean, and cleanses the mess from Clint's softening cock.

After, he leans forward to tilt his forehead against Clint's. "Thank you. That was amazing, and you were amazing. Best birthday present of my life."

Clint just wraps his arms around him, wincing briefly as his muscles adjust to free movement, and holds Phil tight. "You deserve all of it, and more."

For a few moments, they just rest against each other; from the stillness of the room, Clint guesses that Steve and Tony are doing the same. Eventually, Phil presses a kiss to Clint's lips. "If I don't move soon, I may fall asleep on top of you."

"Sleep," Clint smiles, feeling fuzzy and floaty. "That sounds nice."

"C'mon, Barton, get up," Phil says, standing up and offering his arms.

Clint can hear sheets shifting a few feet away. "You don't have to go," Tony says. "Plenty of room on the bed."

Phil meets Clint's eyes, asking a silent question. Clint nods. "I don't mind."

"Roll over, Cap," Tony says, and the two of them shift to the far side of the bed, leaving space for Phil and Clint.

By the time everyone's repositioned and undressed, Steve's lying on his back with a quiet smile on his face, one arm wrapped around Tony, whose head rests on Steve's chest. On Steve's other side, Phil and Clint are spooning -- Phil has a hand resting on Steve's shoulder, maintaining physical contact, while Clint curls up behind him. He breathes in the familiar scent of Phil's shampoo and strokes one hand idly across Phil's chest. Part of him expects to feel strange, sharing the bed with two other people, but Steve and Tony aren't just other people -- they're family, maybe not as safe as Phil, but safe enough for Clint to rest.

"What was that you said about 'next time,' Tony?" Phil asks.

Tony huffs out a laugh. "So you noticed that," he says, and falls silent for a spell. "We'll talk about it in the morning."

"Mmmm," Phil hums. "All right." He slides his hand upward to card through a few strands of Steve's hair, then shifts his hips back to burrow more closely into Clint's embrace.

"Lights, JARVIS," Tony says, and the room falls to near-total darkness, lit only by a dimmed view of the New York skyline outside.

After a moment of quiet, Steve laughs to himself. "Those fireworks were pretty swell, Tony," he says, "but this present beat them hands-down."

"My pleasure," Tony says appreciatively, and Clint can hear the sound of a kiss. "God bless America."


(end.)








Potential trigger warning/kink list: polyamory/open relationships, voyeurism, exhibitionism, dirty talk, brief mention of spanking, every kind of sex (anal, oral, manual), frottage, off-screen kink and safe-sex negotiation, moderate consensual D/s dynamics, rope bondage, orgasm delay, allusions to past canonical violence, masturbation, moderate religious language of worship in a sexual context, unprotected rimming, cock ring use, object penetration (dildo), mild size kink, bukakke (ejaculation on face), face slapping, negotiation and aftercare.

Thanks to H. for inspiration, to everyone for reading, and particularly to everyone who commented or kudos'd on the earlier parts.

People who helped with invaluable betaing and cheerleading: Marmolita, Rhod, Vamp, LDF, Fire, Frogg, and everyone in feelschat. Thank you all, so, so much.

Art that particularly inspired me (some NSFW): orb01's Capsicoul sketches (from which I borrowed the brilliant idea that Phil has a Cap tattoo over his heart), randomslasher's OT4 cuddling, and flatbear's Steve/Tony/Clint.

Fic that particularly inspired me: 51stCenturyFox's The Swap and sabinelagrande's Enough To Go Around.

And yes, in my head, Phil is basically a Paladin whose patron deity is Steve Rogers. Glad You Noticed. And thank you for reading!
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