Tony winced as he heard gears grind from all the way inside the garage. He paused his current task, having the one AI he'd held onto make a note of what was left to do. He was wiping grease off his hands with a rag when a scruffy hipster with a man bun and glitching prosthetic arm came into the shop, looking hot and desperate in a way that tugged at Tony's old playboy instincts.
"How can I help you?" he asked, sauntering into a sunbeam. He wouldn't hit on the guy, but that didn't mean he couldn't make a bit of a showing of it. He might be older but he kept his body fit enough, and he knew he looked good in his blank tank top and grubby jeans.
Crazed blue eyes locked on him. "Mechanic?"
Tony nodded. "I fix things. Probably the arm, definitely the car." He held out a hand. "Tony."
"Bucky." His handshake was firm despite the tremor in his fingers. "Arm's what's breakin' the car. Sam sent me?"
Tony relaxed. "Yeah, Sam's good people." He was aware that Sam knew, but so far he'd kept his word and only sent customers who could be trusted to keep Tony's secrets. "Let me get you some coffee. I've got about 45 minutes before I can close up shop. Tech lab's downstairs."
Bucky's eyes went wide and he swallowed. "Is it?"
"There's plenty of windows," said Tony, hoping he wasn't going to have a panic attack. "You'll see." He showed Bucky to the waiting area and went back to work, trusting his AI to keep watch. 42 minutes later, Tony closed up the car while the rest of the shop shut down automatically, bay doors locked and neon off. Bucky looked less jittery, tucking his cracked phone away with a sheepish smile.
"Sorry about before. Sam talked me down," he said, wiping his palm on his jeans.
Tony smiled. "You left me coffee, all is forgiven," he said, pouring himself the last cup in the pot. "Come on, descend into my lair." While the door was nondescript, the lab it led down to was huge, bigger than the shop atop it with a wall of glass on one side that opened onto the cliff and the ocean beyond. It was comfortably cluttered, Tony's restored bots cleaning up only sporadically, but there were no biohazards that he could spot.
"Wow," said Bucky, rubbing the back of his neck. "This isn't what I pictured."
Tony grinned. "I get that a lot," he said, gesturing to a chair next to his best-lit worktable, the one with all the good tools for micro work. "Sit. Arm up on the table, please."
Bucky dragged his eyes away from the windows and smiled again, eyes sparkling and his whole face lit up in an attractive way that Tony was resolutely going to ignore. "You got it, doll."
Tony got out his tools, eager as always for something he knew he could fix.