The thought echoed in Tonia's head in time with the clicking of her uniform heels on the linoleum, as she followed General Phillips down the hall. She'd thought he'd been joking at first, but he'd been perfectly serious: she, Private Antonia Stark, WAC, was being reassigned. To Project Iron Man.
"I-- I'm an aircraft mechanic, General," she'd said, confused, because there had to have been some kind of mistake. "You need me to patch up a B-17, I'm your gal, sir, but I don't know anything about-- about fixing robot suits."
She'd seen the newsreel of the Iron Man at Guadalcanal -- hadn't everyone? -- and she had to concede that the man's performance had been impressive, but she didn't see what any of that had to do with her. True, she wasn't stupid, and if there were repair manuals -- and knowing the Army, there definitely were -- she could figure something out, but none of that answered the question: why her?
"You don't need to know anything to start with," the general had said. "We'll train you, don't worry."
The Iron Man was one of the most technologically-advanced projects in the world. And they were just handing it all over to... her.
"You wouldn't rather have asked someone like Doctor Richards?"
"No," the general had said, his voice stern, and he had glanced away uncomfortably. "You possess certain... inherent requirements, let's say."
Well. She was going to find out now.
At the end of the hall was a double set of doors, and then a flight of stairs, and then a very tall door leading to a room that read QUARTERS: IRON MAN AND MECHANIC, and here the general stopped.
"I'll leave you two to get acquainted," he said, and then he practically high-tailed it out of there.
Huh, Tonia thought, and knocked.
"Come in," a voice said from the other side of the door, low and resonant through the helmet. "It's open."
Tonia pushed the door open and entered. The room was a cross between personnel quarters -- there were a pair of cots in the corner -- and an engineering lab, full of nearly every piece of machining equipment she could recognize and some she couldn't.
And the Iron Man, fully suited up, was standing in the middle of the room, staring at her. He wasn't as huge as he'd looked in the news, but he was towering very impressively over her. Tonia hoped the fella inside the suit was nice and wouldn't mind her asking questions about it all. She'd learned a long, long time ago that there were men who didn't like when a woman seemed like she might be smarter than him, or a woman who would even want to learn something at all.
"Hi," Tonia said, and then she remembered herself and straightened up. "Iron Man. Sir." What the hell was the Iron Man's rank, anyway? "I'm Private Stark, and I've been, um, assigned as your new mechanic."
There was a brief pause, a blinking behind the eye slits -- the Iron Man had very blue eyes -- and then he started laughing.
"Oh, hell," the Iron Man said. "Phillips didn't tell you a goddamn thing, did he?"
"No, sir," Tonia admitted, because at least that was the truth.
"Here," the Iron Man said. "I can at least clear something up for you." He was scrabbling at some kind of helmet release with his armored fingertips, and lifting the helmet away, and--
Tonia's first thought, honestly, was that the woman under the mask was one hell of a looker, all high cheekbones in a narrow face, blonde hair cropped into a man's buzz cut to fit under the helmet. Her second thought, which embarrassingly took a lot longer than the first thought, was well, this explains a lot.
"I'm Eve," the Iron Man said, extending her hand. "Private Eve Rogers."
"Antonia Stark," Tonia said, clasping the metal gauntlet. "Pleasure to meet you. Call me Tonia."
Eve's face split wide in a grin and Tonia thought she was maybe already falling in love. "So, Tonia, as you can see," Eve said, "it turned out that all the great big manly men in the Army were too big to fit in the Army's nice new Iron Man suit and they had to get a skinny little dame like yours truly to do it."
"It, uh," Tonia said, tongue-tied. "It fits you very nicely."
Eve was still grinning. "So they sent me out to fight, with a man to fix the suit up, the first time, except it turned out that he had to take most of the suit off me and get up close and personal with my tits, such as they are. I didn't really care much at the time, as I was passed out and bleeding rather heavily, but it scandalized the poor mechanic, and then the general. You know how they are. Men."
"Oh, I know," Tonia said. She could imagine the scenario rather well. It kept her from trying to imagine Eve's breasts. "So that's why I'm here, is it? Because I'm a woman?" She glanced over at the cots in the corner. There were two of them. "Supposed to bunk down with you and fix the suit? Keep everything on the up and up?"
"That's the idea," Eve said, and she raised an eyebrow. "Unless you're going to be scandalized by my tits, that is." She ran one gauntleted hand up over her flat metal torso in a move that wasn't supposed to be sexy but that left Tonia uncomfortably warm.
"I, um," Tonia said, and her tongue stuck to the roof of her mouth. "I don't think I'm going to be scandalized."
Eve was watching her very carefully. "Oh. It's like that, is it?" she said, softly, and this was a dangerous game, and for God's sake Eve could report her--
"What if I said it was like that?" Tonia returned, just as carefully.
"Then I'd say that the door locks," Eve said, and now that they both knew they were safe that was more than just a glint of desire in her eyes, "and the bed is over there, and as soon as you get me out of this I am more than happy to become better acquainted with you. If you'd like that." She was practically beaming now.
Tonia could hardly believe this was real. "Oh, I'd love that. But I don't know how your armor works in the slightest," Tonia admitted.
"I'll talk you through it," Eve said. "Come here."
Tonia stepped in, close, then reached up and ran her fingers through the bristles of Eve's hair and watched her eyes fall shut in pleasure.
"I," Tonia added, "am a very quick learner."
It turned out that with a set of socket wrenches and Eve's instructions, it only took Tonia about five minutes to get her out of the armor -- the parts that would come off, anyway. By the time they were done, they were standing in the middle of the room, surrounded by metal. Eve was wearing men's camouflage pants and boots, and a man's A-shirt with a hole cut in the center, the better to display the one part of the suit that stayed on. Sitting in the center of Eve's chest was a flat circle, glowing orange, and Tonia blinked stupidly at it. She'd thought it was part of the armor, but it seemed to be permanent.
Eve's nipples were obvious peaks against the cotton of the thin shirt, and Tonia told herself very sternly to be good even as she could feel her whole body tightening with need. She imagined pushing Eve's shirt to the side just a little, uncovering one of her breasts, as if the hole in the shirt were an invitation.
"See," Eve said, "this is the part where I wondered if my tits would actually scandalize you."
"I don't know," Tonia drawled. "Take your shirt off, and we'll see."
Eve promptly lifted her shirt over her head and looked back at her, waiting. There was a little fear in her eyes, like she thought Tonia might actually say no, now. She had small, high breasts, and the orange circle sat between them, directly over her sternum, the outer edge just barely brushing the innermost curve of her breast, and Tonia had to concede that, as an engineer and a queer, it made it very hard to stop looking. She wanted to know what that thing did. She wanted to get her mouth on Eve's breasts right now.
"Well," Tonia said, finding it hard to breathe through all the lust in her, "you've got gorgeous tits, I'll tell you that much."
Eve rolled her eyes. "Now I know you're lying."
"Come over here," Tonia said, figuring that the story of what was in Eve's chest could at least wait until after the sex. "I'll prove it."
"I don't want to mess up your lipstick," Eve admitted, and Tonia tipped her head back and let Eve kiss her way down her throat. "Maybe next time?"
Tonia liked the thought of there being a next time.
Eve unbuttoned Tonia's uniform shirt, then undid her bra, and stared at her breasts with a combination of lust and something that looked an awful lot like a sense of creeping inferiority.
"You're beautiful," Tonia assured her. "Who needs more than a handful, anyway?"
"Me," Eve said, with rock-solid determination, and she buried her face in Tonia's cleavage, kissing and licking, her fingers playing over Tonia's nipples until Tonia was gasping and panting and thinking maybe she could come just from this. "Much more fun to play with," Eve added, when she lifted her head. God, Eve was going to kill her.
That, of course, was when Eve rucked up Tonia's skirt, hauled her underwear down, and proceeded to eat her out like the Army was going to give a medal for it. Tonia swore and grabbed the sheets as Eve's tongue swiped thoroughly and messily over her, then went for her clit, licking her just perfectly, pushing her higher and higher, and she was shaking and shaking and flying.
She pulled Eve up next to her and Eve wiped her face off on the sheets before laughing and kissing Tonia just under her ear.
"Your makeup's perfect," Eve said. "A success."
"I'll say," Tonia panted. "Can I return the favor?"
Eve took Tonia's hand and pulled it in the direction of the waistband of her pants, and Tonia figured that was enough of an invitation to get busy.
Eve wriggled out of the pants, kicked the boots on the floor, and let Tonia slide her hand down until she had two fingers in her pussy and one on her clit. Tonia was good enough at rhythm to figure the rest out. She slid her fingers up and in as she rubbed her thumb over Eve's clit, and Eve's mouth opened wide and soundless as she clenched down hard on Tonia's fingers, as Tonia took her through it, as she spasmed again and again, and once again when Tonia brushed her nipples with her other hand just to see how much Eve liked it. The answer: a lot. It was always good to know things. Tonia was looking forward to seeing how much she could find out.
They lay there together, afterwards, Tonia still mostly dressed, Eve mostly not, tangled around each other, grinning. Tonia reached up and ran her mostly-clean hand through Eve's spiky hair.
"Yeah," Eve said, sounding extremely satisfied, and her eyes were bright, bright, bright, the prettiest thing that Tonia had ever seen. "I think this is going to work out just fine."