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Wet and Salty

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“The first time is always a disaster,” Tony says to a gloomy Steve.

Steve shakes his head, scrubbing a hand through his hair. “You’re just saying that to try and make me feel better.”

Clint freezes before taking a silent step back and flattening himself against the refrigerator. He taps the aid behind his ear and winces as Steve’s voice stabs into his head like an auditory ice pick. Fucking Stark tech, as temperamental as its creator. He slides his finger over the hearing aid gently, adjusting the amplification, finding the sweet spot. 

Tony’s laugh carries to him easily. “You’re being too hard on yourself. You did fine. You just need a little practice.”

Clint leans forward slightly, cocking his head. From his position in the kitchen on the communal floor, he can see Stark and Rogers perched on the L-shaped couch, their backs to him. The chair’s big enough to fit all the Avengers on it at once --well, maybe not Banner 2.0-- and yet they’re sitting close, legs pressing together, no space to fit even the skinny arachna-kid between them. The wheels in Clint’s head start turning.

“Did you choke on your first try?” Steve’s tone is hopeful.

“I don’t remember, I was drunk."

The gears in Clint's head, lubricated by his extremely active imagination, pick up speed. His eyes go wide as he fumbles in his pocket for his phone.

“The first time I do remember wasn’t that great. I may have gagged a bit. It wasn’t pretty.”

Clint thumbs the lockscreen away and presses on the cropped picture of Nat smirking up at him. His fingers dance across the screen. I think I’ve just walked in on the Cap and Stark post-coitus post mortem. He presses send and turns his attention back to the couch.

Steve’s tight shoulders drop visibly as tension leaves him. He blows out a relieved breath. “Oh, good. I thought I did something wrong.”

Clint watches the tips of Cap’s ears turn red enough to stop traffic. His phone vibrates silently in his hand.

Bucky has just been added to the group chat.

Animated dots bubble across the screen, and then: You think? You either did or didn’t. Which is it? Nat doesn’t win the pot without proof.

Steve’s large hand comes up to rub at the back of his neck. “Is it always so… wet?”

“Has to be. If it’s not wet, it’s not good.”

Nat’s photo blinks to life under Bucky’s. What do you want, Barnes? A signed confession? Don’t be a sore loser.

Steve’s hulking shoulders raise in a halting, self-conscious shrug. “I wasn’t sure what to do. Whether to use my teeth or...”

Tony’s nodding now. “It’s just a personal preference, and after a few times you’ll get a feel for it. To start though, it’s best just to use your tongue, slide it down your throat.”

Sam has been added to the group chat.

Clint’s eyes dart from the couch to the phone like a surreal tennis match.
   
I’m with tall, dark and brooding on this one. Not admitting defeat without confirmation.
     
“You could have warned me it would be so messy. I think I still have some on my chin.”

“That’s called saving some for later, Rogers.” Tony’s laugh is low and husky as he swipes his finger over the aforementioned body part.

Clint bites his lip and looks longingly at the coffeemaker as he taps over his phone screen. Not sure I can hold my position much longer. I think they’re gearing up for an encore.

“Did you like the taste, though?”

Steve bites his lip a moment before answering. “It was a bit saltier than I was expecting.”

Bucky’s face winks up at him. Perfect. Get proof.

“And the feel of it in your mouth? On your tongue? That didn’t worry you?”

Steve shakes his head. “That was nice. Kind of… plump.” 

Clint reads Nat’s message in his head in her voice. Now you mention it, I wouldn’t say no to a little photographic evidence. He ignores the thirst emojis.

“The most important thing,” Tony continues, rubbing Steve’s shoulder, “is whether or not you liked it.”

“I’m not sure, Tony. Do you think we could try again?”

Oh, god. Clint is suddenly at the crossroads of trying to decide whose wrath he fears more: the hulking national treasure and the tin man’s or Nat’s. He sighs. There’s really no contest. He thumbs open the SI app linked to his hearing aid, and presses the purple and white target icon to start the recording.

Tony’s voice drops conspiratorially, leaning in like it isn’t just the two of them --well, three of them, but he doesn’t know that, Clint thinks-- in the room. “So, are you still hungry or have you had your fill for now? It’s okay if you need a break before round two. Your secret is safe with me.”

Clint taps the screen hurriedly. No pictures. I am not getting within punching distance. You’ll have to make do with audio. 

Steve laughs, leaning close to Tony and licking his lips. “No, no, now’s good. Probably best to try again while I still have the taste of the first one on my tongue, and I remember what to do."

Clint is grateful when Sam’s face pops up on his screen, relieved to put his eyes anywhere but the men on the couch.

Hell no, I’m not listening to that. I vote Barnes for the job. He’s probably heard Cap getting all hot and heavy before.

Bucky’s message pops up followed by three knife emojis. If you don’t listen you have to pay double, asshole.

Clint watches the app’s soundwave graphic pulse on his screen as Tony’s smooth voice sounds from the couch, travels through his hearing aid and is captured in his phone.

“How about this time I help you? Just open your mouth and I’ll put it in for you.”

Aww, fuck. No. Steve leans forward, his head disappearing from view, and Clint’s brain calls chicken. It's one thing to accidentally --and then kind of on purpose-- overhear your friends talking about blowjobs, it is entirely another to hang around and wait for a private showing. Nat can kill him for tapping out, at least it will be quick.

Clint peels himself from the fridge and clears his throat. “Uh, hey, guys. Hi.” He waves as Tony and Steve swivel toward him. “I couldn’t help overhearing, and that’s your fault, Stark,” Clint says, gesturing to his high-tech hearing aid. “I’m happy for you, really.” He pauses, considering. “Mostly,” he corrects himself with a shrug. “I had money on you getting together a month ago. As it stands, Nat’s gonna take the pot. But, if you could put a pin in the blow-by-blow, and any subsequent blowing until after I get my coffee to go, that’d be great.”

The corner of Tony’s lip pulls up in a smirk, while Steve’s brows furrow, confusion scrawled across his face. He turns to Tony who throws him a knowing glance, and understanding and embarrassment spread over Steve’s face like a time-lapse sunset.

“Oh, uh, no, it’s not--” Steve stammers.

Clint waves a hand dismissively before hurrying to the coffeemaker. “It’s all good, Cap.” He sets about filling his super-jumbo flask with life-giving bean juice. He has more than earned every drop. “And for what it’s worth, try not to stress too much. I think some of it comes down to new partners… new bodies, you know? The first time I was on my knees for Bucky, I--” Clint spins on his heel, coffee acquired, and stops dead at the open mouths and wide-eyes shining over at him from the couch.

Steve is the first to recover, snapping his mouth closed, his eyes dropping low, suddenly finding Clint’s shoes fascinating. Tony blinks a few times, gradually bringing his eyes back to their normal size. He coughs but remains uncharacteristically quiet.

“You weren’t talking about… uh, oh.” Clint scratches behind his ear and cocks his head. “But… wet and salty? Sliding down your throat?”

Tony’s smirk is back, fixed firmly in place as he dips out of view to grab something from the table in front of the couch. Clint takes a few steps forward, pushing past the thick air of humiliation determinedly until he can see the large platter Stark is lifting into view.

“Oh.” Clint nods, awkwardly. “Right. Well, that makes sense.”

“Want one?” Clint hopes the smug amusement lodges in Tony’s throat and chokes him.

Lifting his mug, Clint shakes his head. “Coffee and oysters? Not a great mix.” He starts backtracking, his cheeks on fire. “You enjoy, though. Sorry about the, ah, well, you know.”

Clint’s out of the kitchen and headed for the elevator when Steve’s hushed voice registers in his ear. “You think we should tell him the oysters were part of our one-month anniversary celebration, and that he actually won the pool?”

Tony snorts. “And let him know his accuracy extends beyond flying projectiles and reward him with a cash prize? Hell no. He’s insufferable enough as it is.”

The sounds of soft laughter and wet kisses reach Clint just as the elevator doors slide closed.

Clint’s thumb bounces across the screen as he grins broadly. So, turns out I was wrong about not being right.

[attachment cantmiss.mp3 successfully uploaded to the group chat.]