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The red dot was starting to really annoy Victor.

It showed up in the Common Room a few minutes ago, and even though he’d quickly checked with JARVIS to determine that it wasn't a threat, Victor still felt a strong urge to attack the dot.

He growled and tightened his arms around his mate. Darcy looked up at him from where she was snuggled against his side.

"You okay?" she checked.

He nodded, deciding to ignore the dot and concentrate on whatever movie Darcy wanted to watch. He was trying not to let his instincts overrule him, having just gotten back into Darcy's good graces after last week's debacle involving the tentacled creatures in the streets outside the towers. Jane had accidentally opened a portal right outside the tower and this had caused the creatures to wreak chaos, setting off an Assemble alarm. Darcy had been out on a coffee run for the scientists, and had been in the middle of the fight. After the fight, she had not been impressed with his possessive caveman act when he insisted that he go out with her from then on. Possibly the fact that she had caught him tasting a leftover bit of tentacle to see if it was edible had contributed to her annoyance, too. It had certainly been a few days and a lot of teeth-brushing later before she let him kiss her again.

The dot started moving. Victor groaned. Darcy paused the movie. "Okay, what's going on?"

"The dot."

"Is it annoying you?"

"No, it's uh - it's tempting," he confessed.

She smiled with amusement, then thought of something and frowned. "Which reminds me, where did the dot come from? JARVIS, where did the dot come from?"

"Sir is using the laser to determine some interior design specifications." Darcy narrowed her eyes at both the explanation and the AI's long suffering tone when he spoke. JARVIS only used that voice when he believed the occupants were doing something childish, usually using it when Sam and Clint got up to mischief.

"JARVIS, where is Tony right now?"

"I believe Sir is in his lab right now."

Darcy nodded, and then looked up at Victor. "I'll be right back, I'm going to go wrangle a scientist." He nodded, looking strained with concentration. She leaned in and gave him a quick peck, which escalated when he brought her down and deepened the kiss, firmly establishing his claim on her. She rolled her eyes at him but smiled as they broke apart, and headed towards the elevators.

Darcy took a minute to ascertain that nothing was exploding before stepping in. Tony glanced up briefly from his Iron Man hologram schematics before turning back towards them. Darcy saw that his eyes weren't glazed by Science! at all and narrowed her eyes on him.

"Tony, you have 10 seconds to turn it off before I use the override code to lock you out of the labs for a month."

His face was perfectly innocent. "Turn what off, Lewis? The lights? The oven? The bots? I'll have you know that the bots are running on arc reactor technology and don't actually turn off, just go into sleep mode." Darcy raised an unimpressed eyebrow and crossed her arms over her chest. "Plus, you don't have the override codes."

"But Pepper does, and she'll use it if I tell her what you're doing."

"I can't help it if the guy is 95% instinct and a huge cat."

Darcy pulled out her Stark-enhanced taser. "JARVIS? Can you call Pepper down here?" Tony paled. Darcy knew as well as he did that Pepper had not yet forgotten the incident the month before when he had followed Thor out to fight some AIM bots in New Jersey, despite being very drunk. The face-plant that the Iron Man suit had done immediately after all the bots were eliminated appeared all over the headlines the next day and caused the SI CEO to become apoplectic.

"Now let's not be hasty here....I'm still working on the paperwork for the new StarkPad."

"You're...doing paperwork?"

Tony pouted at Darcy’s incredulous tone.

"Pepper made me. Apparently a stock drop of twenty points was enough for me to be put on slave labor."

"Yes it was." Both Darcy and Tony whipped around to the entrance of his lab, where Pepper stepped through and surveyed the scene, then sighed. "What did he do this time?"

"JARVIS, is the laser still on in the Common Room?"

"Yes, Miss Lewis."

"Show us the Common Room." The holographic displays of the Iron Man suits disappeared to show what was the Common Room.

It was now completely wrecked. The couches were overturned, books, lamps, and even some chess pieces were scattered over the floor. The television had done a complete dive and was on the floor, shattered. The wall above it was covered with long, inch-wide, deep gashes. Pepper and Darcy watched in horror as Victor snarled at the laser point and bounded towards the wall, this time bringing down the entire wall crumbling into the room behind it.

"JARVIS, activate code zeta domino thirteen, effective once Mr. Stark leaves the lab."

"Yes, Miss Potts."

Pepper turned to Tony, who took a step back. "You are going to clean up this entire mess and apologize to Victor. He is not a pet for you to play with!" She crossed her arms and looked pointedly at the door when Tony began to halfheartedly object. Pepper followed Tony out of the labs, while Darcy stayed watching the holograms. Now that the wall was gone and Pepper had shut down all of Tony's projects in the labs, the laser had turned off. Darcy hurried out of the lab when she saw Victor's stricken face at the destruction he had caused.

She threw herself into an elevator and gasped "Top speed to the common room, JARVIS!" The elevator shot up and dinged pleasantly within a minute, causing slight vertigo and her to glance around dazed for a few seconds before throwing herself out of the elevator. She raced up to Victor at the same time as several Avengers piled through the doorway from the stairs. She knelt next to Victor.

"Nothing to see here, guys! It's all good! Don't worry, Tony will take care of it." Steve looked particularly concerned, but Natasha ushered the rest of them out with a quick glance towards the vents, letting Darcy know that there was still someone there. Darcy looked at the vents and yelled "That means you too, Clint!" There was a tiny muffled sliding noise, which she knew that Clint made just for her sake.

She sat down gingerly next to Victor, who was still staring dismally at the rubble he had created. She took one of his hands in hers and began to pick out the plaster from his claws.

"Careful," he rumbled quietly. She nodded, taking care to avoid the sharp Adamantium blades on the edges of his claws. After she finished both his hands, she laced her fingers through his and stood up, attempting to pull him upwards, though she could never have moved his bulk if he hadn’t helped. She dragged him into the elevator and then towards their suite, pulling him towards the bathroom.

"I'm fine, Darcy," he rumbled quietly, resisting.

She looked up at him, then giggled. "There's dust in your hair." She stood up on her tiptoes, knowing that she could barely reach the top of his head, and brushed some dust out. He flushed. She started the shower and then started peeling her own clothes off. He blinked.

"What are you doing?" Victor asked, bemused.

"What does it look like I'm doing? Our plans for this afternoon are trashed along with the common room, so we're going to go get clean, and I'm going to take you to the cafe that I was talking about earlier. I'm hungry, and you said you wanted to accompany me when I go out." He raised an eyebrow, clearly recalling their earlier disagreement.

She stepped in the shower, grabbing the detachable shower head and spraying it at him. "Well, do you want to join me or not?"

He playfully growled, advancing on her slowly, every bit a feline stalking his prey. She backed up slowly, recognizing the predatory intent in his eyes, stopping only when her back hit the cool tile behind her.

"Looks like you're stuck," he said softly.

Darcy felt a thrill run through her back, but decided for raising an eyebrow instead. "What are you going to do about it?"

Victor pounced.

Tony trudged towards the suite that Darcy and Victor shared, knowing that this would possibly be the easiest part of attempting to get back into Pepper's good graces. He knocked on the door and waited.

And waited. A minute passed before he began to get impatient and decided that -

"VICTOR!" this shriek was echoed by a loud roar. Tony winced.


"Yes, sir?"

"Put a note for me to work on improving the sound absorption of wall material once Pepper lifts the ban on my labs."

"Yes sir."