Tony had never seen such a mess in his life.
He looked around his (previously) pristine kitchen, which was now covered in flour, with mixing bowls everywhere, and various baking utensils scattered on the countertops. It was a mess.
Stepping into the kitchen, the billionaire winced as his shoes left flour footprints on the tile floor.
Within seconds of surveying the scene, Tony found the culprit. A certain Peter Parker, who had earbuds in and was vigorously stirring some concoction with a spatula, humming and bobbing his head to whatever music was pumping into his ears.
Tony leaned against the wall and smiled at the scene. He wouldn’t admit it of course, but the kid had come to grow on his in the past couple months. They had progressed from a one-sided relationship, to Peter spending the weekends at the Tower, and making his life just a bit brighter. He could see that Peter was wearing his oversized, soft MIT hoodie, making Tony’s heart melt just a little more.
Tony cleared his throat. Peter looked up, dropping his spatula in surprise. Whatever was in the mixing bowl splattered over the edges, making Tony wince.
“Mister Stark!” Peter dropped his mixing bowl, splattering the contents of it on the counter top.
“Parker. Mind telling me why it looks like a hurricane breezed through here?” Tony asked, gesturing to the crime scene around him.
“You see, the thing is, “ Peter rambled, clambering over what was most likely all the bowls in the Tower. “It’s Christmas Mister Stark! And so I was thinking-”
“It’s the first of December.” Tony corrected.
“Yeah, Christmas . So anyways, like I was saying, it’s Christmas and I, dunno, I felt that we needed to get into the holiday spirit? Right?” Peter looked at him with those puppy eyes and damn it, Tony could already feel his defences weakening.
“Holiday spirit.” Tony affirmed. Peter nodded vigorously. “That’s great and all kid, but, why did you have to wreak all the holiday spirit on my poor kitchen?”
“‘S not like you use it anyways, “ Peter rebuked, picking up the forgotten mixing bowl.
“And how would you know that? Maybe I enjoy cooking up gourmet meals in my spare time, when I’m not playing babysitter to a 14-year old with a lack of self-preservation.”
“I’m 15.” Peter stated, deadpan. “Also, I’ve seen you burn toast Mister Stark. There’s no way you’ve cooked anything harder than an omelet in your lifetime.”
“I’ll have you know I made a mean omelet for Pepper once back in the day.”
“Then prove it.” Peter smirked.
“How do I do that, Gordon Ramsey?”, Tony shot back.
“Help me bake these cookies?” Peter asked, holding up a spatula and a mixing bowl, with his puppy dog eyes turned on full blast.
“Sure kiddo,” Tony found himself saying, “what type were you planning on making?”
Peter’s eyes lit up, and Tony knew he was a goner.
“Okay so Miss Potts’ favourite is gingerbread, and so is May’s, so that’s what I was originally planning on making, but gingerbread is really hard to make cause it got really hard and tasted like cardboard, so then I asked Mister Rhodey and he said your favourites are sugar cookies and snickerdoodle, and my favourite is snickerdoodle too so I think we should make those but I ran out of cinnamon while making the gingerbread and-” Peter pulled Tony into the kitchen, thrusted an apron at him and enthusiastically gathered ingredients and dumped them on the kitchen island, all without stopping for a breath.
“Calm down there Pete,” Tony laughed, ruffling up Peter’s flour-covered curls. “Take a breath, and we can get started.”
Peter grinned, a wide-toothed, innocent grin, one full of happiness and light. Smiling back at the kid, as he began measuring out flour and sugar, Tony knew he’d broken his vow to stay away, but when he looked at Peter busily mixing together ingredients, he couldn’t care less.
For the rest of that cold December night, the kitchen was alit with bright smiles and laughs, the smell of baking cookies wafting all around the penthouse. Later that night, Tony and Peter both fell asleep on the couch, flour covering them both from head-to-toe, a huge mess in the kitchen, but with smiles on their faces.
When Pepper walked in on them the next morning, she couldn’t resist taking a photo of the two.