2011-09-04: Long Island Labor Day


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Summary: An impromptu pool party and barbecue is held at Tony's Long Island home for a group of close friends. NPC Action: James Rhodes, Edwin Jarvis, Harold Hogan, Pepper Potts and two oc's.

Date: September 4, 2011

Log Title: Long Island Labor Day

Rating: PG

Long Island NY- Stark Residence

Labor Day weekend is upon everyone which normally means that all are in for an increasingly hot day with temps well in the nineties and a beating sun overhead. It also means that a lot of people are out enjoying the parks and recreation as well as enjoying a possible barbecue. Having had a rather long draining week Tony's invited several close friends to his Long Island home to enjoy a pool party. Out front of the home there are four cars parked in the driveway with another two behind the mailbox on the street. Music can be heard along with laughter and splashes from behind the house.

Joan arrives on her cycle, for she doesn't own a car, hoping that she found the right address. The numerous cars and splashing seem to indicate she's got the place. Taking off her helmet, she spends a moment to pull off gloves and toss them inside. Then the bike is parked in an out of the way spot before she heads around the house to peer around the back. unzipped her riding jacket, showing that she's jeans and a plain tshirt beneath. Doesn't need the protective gear, but it sure keeps the police at bay. And so with helmet dangling from a hand she ventures in amid the people. "Is Tony around?" Asked, for she doesn't know if he is puttering down stairs or something. That sounds like Tony. "Jarvis?" Is the AI here too? "You know it's almost sad I'm getting used to this." She mutters to herself.

The backyard is rather large and facing the canal where an occasional boat passes. A few party go-ers are already enjoying the pool whereas a handful of others are either lounging pool side on a chair or are lingering around near the grill area. It's one of those around the grilling area that smiles and greets Joan. "Good afternoon. I do not believe I've had the pleasure of making your acquaintance," he states extending his hand towards her. "I am Jarvis. A pleasure to meet you." Jarvis is an older man with white hair and mustache that speaks with a British accent.

Face to face with Jarvis, the woman is struck dumb a moment. Wait. What? Sheer habit has her gradually accepting that hand, and soon she's blushing. "I'm sorry! I had no idea you were a person too. Tony's always talking about Jarvis, but now that I think about it some of what I took for sheer ramble might have been mentioning you. I'm Joan. Um.. I was invited. I hope." Now not certain, she smiles sheepishly. That helmet is fiddled with a little. "It's certainly nice to meet you, sir. I've heard you are an amazing cook."

Jarvis covers Joan's hand with his in a hopefully comforting gesture. "Anthony can be confusing at times and in this particular case doubly so. He created the Artificial Intelligence to behave as I do in a tribute to me that is endearing if not troublesome at times. Such as this one," he smiles. "Thank you for the compliment and you are indeed in the right place. Would you like me to escort you inside to find Anthony destroying my kitchen or shall I leave you be to navigate through the sea of beach items and chatting friends?"

Relief that she hasn't caused insult. "I think he's confusing most of the time, but I chalk that up to having little experience in his world." Still sheepish here. "Is there anything I could help with?" Asked of what she would like to do. "I love to cook and would equally love to learn if you have anything you want to share. It's been ages since I got to make a large meal.. not that I knew what you had planned." The sheepish fades and there's that warm smile. Joan's hair has changed color to a warm orange, perhaps because Fall is starting. "I'm sure Tony will survive without me for a while longer." A wink and she starts to shrug out of her cycle jacket.

"Ahem, well.." Jarvis clears his throat while pondering the party situation. At least this gathering is on a more intimate scale without dozens of people dancing about, falling into the pool, and leaving a mess that he'll have to clean. Rhodey is in the pool with the neighbors kids as their parents enjoy some time free from monitoring them. Happy is seated towards the deep end of the pool waving his legs back and forth in the water while chatting with a female friend. "I have been removed from duty as it were and told to enjoy myself though if you are interested in cooking I frequently am at the Towers. Perhaps something can be arranged if you would like to help me prepare a meal one day. As for now why don't we take your things inside and if you wish to use the pool I will show you a room that is available for changing in or the bath, whichever you prefer." There's a smile as he shows Joan towards the open doors leading into the home. "Ms.Potts is in the kitchen hopefully gaining the upper hand in regards to whom is cooking this afternoon. I shudder to think what would happen if Anthony were left grilling."

Aw! That's no fun! "I'll definitely look you up." She notes cheerfully of finding Jarvis at the Towers. "That would be awesome, thank you. Oh, don't worry about me." The motion of a hand about her things. "I have my suit on under this. Figured it'd be easier that way." Joan grins, but does follow Jarvis inside so that she can put her things down. "Of course I don't even know most the people here. Tony doesn't tell me anything." There's a look to Jarvis in confusion about the grill. "Is he the type to somehow burn the house down?" If so no wonder that grimace. "Hello, Miss Potts!" A cheerful call to the woman Joan has known longer than Tony. Feels better without carrying things, but that does mean hands are free to fidget. Nervous here among the few Tony calls his friends.

As they make their way through the home there is conversation to be heard in the kitchen between two people. Once Joan's belongings are set away with everyone else's things Jarvis steers the young woman towards the kitchen where the banter continues between Tony and Pepper. "Hopefully you do not feel excluded, Ms. Joan. There are few that will turn up repeatedly when able, and the remaining silence must be chocked up to his professions. I'm certain you are here not only to enjoy the holiday but to meet those you have not though that is only my guess." There is a nod for the mention of possible incidents with the grill which lead Jarvis into telling a story about the one bbq at the Avengers Mansion that went south because of over zealous propane use.
Pepper turns at the greeting and offers a bright smile. "Joan! Glad you could make it." She turns tossing a dishtowel at Tony's shoulder then comes over to hug Joan. "Please tell me you're here to help me take command of the kitchen," she teases though there's a hint of sincere hope there. Jarvis meanwhile is grumbling at the state of the kitchen while making Tony clean up the mess around a rather large bowl of salad fixings.

She's not been in this house before, so there's looking around as Jarvis leads the way. Lovely place! "I don't quite know why I'm nervous, but I am." Joan doesn't find any reason to deny that. She's soon laughing at the story about the grill however, wondering how smart a man could be so stupid sometimes. And then there's Pepper. The hug is happily returned. "Of course." Rescuing Pepper would be a delight. "What do I need to do? I made Jarvis the same offer, but he said he's been denied the chance today." There's a grin to Tony, and if she's able, Joan drops a kiss on the cleaning up salad man. "Aw, is the meanie Pepper going to make you eat rabbit food." Totally teasing the inventor. Including a funny voice as she asks. Then she's looking back to Pepper about what needs doing.

"You are meeting new people, Ms. Joan. With this lot I would be nervous as well," Jarvis offers up a smile before regaling the young woman with stories of how pool parties have gone in the past.
In the kitchen Pepper takes a step back from the hug to peer at the kitchen in general. "Jarvis needs a break," she insists. "The problem with that is that he," being Tony, "decided to take over. I think the prep has gone well enough. We should be ready to ferry what we need over to the grill now."
Tony has cleaned up the bits of salad that wound up on the counter as well as followed behind Jarvis doing what is asked. Now that it's done he finds himself kissed and laughing about the salad. "That's for everyone here though I'm certain she expects me to eat some of it." With an arm Tony ensnares Joan into an embrace, "I'm glad you could make it. Remind me to introduce you to everyone." Then to Pepper, "Jarvis and I can carry everything to the grill then leave you ladies be."

"Considering Tony? That says a lot about his friends." A wink and a grin, then much laughter over the story. In the kitchen Joan looks rueful over Jarvis taking a break. "If this is how cooking is done when Jarvis is away.. he's not getting much break if he has to clean up afterwards." Good thing Tony is! "That sounds good with me." About helping out. First though there's a hug she has to get in when she finds herself snagged. Quite happy snugs the man back, lingering just a moment. "Wouldn't miss it for the world. And I will. I don't know anyone but you three, and I only just met Jarvis. Did you /really/ have to name the computer after him? No wonder I've been confused. You've been talking about two different people."
Extracting herself from the embrace, Joan nods about getting things out. "What do we need to do?" Asked of Pepper. "I was telling Jarvis it's been a long time since I got to cook for a big crowd."

"I seek to confuse people always. It's quite fun to watch the flailing that occurs," Tony comments seriously. "Maybe you should talk with Jarvis sometime to see why I've cursed him with dual identities." Jarvis merely shakes his head at this offering them a smile then seeing himself out of the kitchen to check on how the others are doing pool side. He may be off duty at the moment but he can't help but want to help others.
Pepper claps her hands together looking thoughtful. "Most of this can stay in here for now. Hrm, if you want to take the platter over there with the burgers and hot dogs I'll grab the platter with the kabobs and Tony can ferry out the drinks. We'll have to come back for the grilling tools but I think we've got it under control." From there food is carried over to the table next to the grill then one of them can get the tools from the kitchen while Tony hauls the cooler of drinks out to where the tables are then heads back inside to pick up the metal tub of adult only beverages that remain on the non-kid table. With that done the billionaire is free from responsibility, which suits him, and as such he dives into the pool splashing everyone near. Pepper fires up the grill, "Thank God this is just the gang. I'd have kicked Tony in the shin if he tried to plan a larger party at the last minute. Oh! We need an apron don't you think, Joan?"

"And you are very good at it." Joan compliments, when perhaps she shouldn't. "I'm fairly sure you do not want me talking to Jarvis about you, Tony. That tends to involve photo albums and highly embarrassing stories I get to remind you of for years to come." Waggles her eyebrows at that. "Know what? Jarvis, I must see the albums and hear these stories. This man's ego could use the taking down a few pegs." But she loves him anyway. After that there's carrying of things, Joan getting the heaviest when available, and soon that table is loaded down. "This is a lot of food. Is Tony going to leave anything for the rest of us?"
Aprons? "We have those?" Very good idea however! "Where are they?" If told she will happily duck inside as Tony splashes into the pool. Emerges in a couple of minutes with the kitchen attire. "Good thing I dressed down." Noted with a smile for Rhodey's certain protest over the splashing. Wasn't he talking to a pretty lady?

Tony sees eminent doom on the horizon especially when Jarvis starts walking out of the kitchen to go outside talking briefly about how four year old Tony with his fuzzy wavey hair liked to decorate with mac n'cheese and draw on walls with permanent markers. With his face scrunched up like Kermit the Frog Pepper giggles at his misfortune then is chased off before she can continue to take amusement from the situation. "Let's not poke Jarvis for information though he's the one to ask."
Outside after the food has been ferried out to the table Pepper snickers, "Not only him but the rest of the boys. We'll have to make sure the kids, and us ladies get dibs before any of them are allowed at the platters. Happy will certainly decimate the potato salad Mrs. Moretti brought over. She makes it herself and refuses to tell anyone what she puts into it to give it a bit more flavor. The aprons? Oh, they should be in that long cabinet near the fridge."
In the pool Rhodes wipes water out of his eyes as the children giggle like mad. Happy looks disgruntled from where he's seated though the companion of the retired boxer doesn't seem overly grumpy about being drenched. Tony pops up nearby the kids running a hand over his head to slick back his hair. "You couldn't have just hopped in could you?" James asks of the man. "Where's the fun in that?" Tony responds then sinks underwater to lift one of the kids up onto his shoulders.

Sorry, but Joan is totally going to be talking to Jarvis. He can tell her funny stories as he teaches her new things to cook. It will totally be win win for her. Not so much for Tony. Which is part of the amusement value. She chuckles about all the boys, nodding that the kids get first dibs. That's as it should be. "Would you tell me who everyone is? Tony said he would, but you know how that is." A shake of head and she offers Pepper that apron. When aprons are tied into place, Joan helps the other woman get things grilling. It's fun to work with someone else. "How often does Tony throw a party?" Still new to this life, the woman has a great many questions. Asking Pepper means they might even get answered. Already learned that one of Tony. "Well, after you tell me who everyone is, anyway." A grin spreads for that. "Is this Mrs. Moretti here?" The crowd is a bit surprising to Joan. Not what she expected, but it is relief to find she was wrong.

As Pepper gets the grill going she turns to look at the assembled then out towards the water before starting with those closest to them which are the ones in the pool. "The little girl atop Tony's shoulders is Katie, and the little boy who is her brother is Dante. The unfortunate man playing the other helper in the game is James Rhodes though you'll mostly hear everyone calling him Rhodey. He's an old friend of Tony's from the Air Force." Pepper turns her attention back towards the grill to set the kabob skewers up onto the small grilling area above the main section. "The man seated at the deep end is Happy whom I think you've probably heard a lot about, and his friend Anna." If Joan wants to start setting burgers onto the grill there's plenty of room for her to do so as Pepper keeps pointing people out. "You know Jarvis of course, and over at the drinks is Ciro and Elena Moretti who live next door. Next door being on the other side of all of these trees of course." Pepper looks towards the sea of trees then over to Joan. "A few others have been invited but I'm not sure they can make it at the last minute otherwise you might have met a few colorful characters."

Once the coals are ready, which takes several minutes, Joan carefully loads burgers and hotdogs on. She glances out to the others as the introductions go on, making mental notes to herself to try and remember the names. "I've heard about Happy, yes, but not much about James. More because there was little to remind Tony of him in conversation than any other reason." She doesn't ask if they had been fighting or something. Maybe just distracted and distant. Once the naming is over, Joan smiles. "I feel glad he trusts me enough to let me meet you all." Knowing that Tony would have to trust someone a good deal to let them close to people he calls his friends.
There's a pause as a bit of burger drops down, and she glances to Pepper before making a shush gesture. "Don't freak." With bare fingers she picks up the grating carefully and plucks the bit of meat from the flames. "Yes, he knows." A smile and that burger is put aside. Maybe she can fix it since it's mostly uncooked. "Sad none of the Avengers could make it. I was looking forward to meeting those Tony calls his friends." Not all, just some.

"There used to be more parties than one could change their socks though that hasn't been the case in years. On occasion there's a massive party at the drop of a hat but neither he nor I stay at them long. It's an excuse to do something then vanish more or less." Pepper speaks about parties in general since the question was asked. With her explanation done, "Rhodey's a busy man. I'm glad he could be in town to stop by as it's always nice to see him. As for your being here you're a friend of mine, and you're dating him for some strange reason…" she teases then offers to get them both a drink. Before she can leave a piece of burger goes awol. Oh well! Then Joan does something that has Pepper's full attention. "…." Pepper pokes Joan in the arm with a fingertip. "You've got some explaining to do missy." She's not mad, and there's even a exasperated shake of her head before she dashes off to get drinks.

There used to be more? "I've heard a lot of rumor about Tony, and that explains some of them. About how he parties and such." Joan discounted it, seeing that he didn't do that during the time she'd known him, but Pepper's explanation made a few things clearer. "Maybe the poor dear is getting old." A grin for that one. "I for one prefer this kind of party. With people you care about. The big ones always make me uncomfortable. The music gets too loud and you find yourself with strangers you can't even talk to because of the volume. I'm a country girl at heart I suppose." For all that amuses her more than anything.
A bit sheepish at Pepper's poke she admits, "I'm a mutant. Or so I assume. There's no real story behind it. I'm not the hero type." A shrug and Pepper is off to get drinks. Joan remains and dutifully tends to grilling meat. Shifts things around and gets some large burgers on for the hungry men folk. They can make some mega burgers once the kids are done getting their share.

"Some of it true some of it not, Joan. It really depends on what the rumor is and if you want there are a lot of people, and even an AI, that can answer most questions though you really should go to Tony first if there's something you've heard that you want to know about." Pepper is talking then splutters with laughter that Tony's getting old. "I doubt that one. He might be picking up a bit of maturity though." That's about as bad as saying the man is getting older. "I'm all for the smaller get-togethers though with things being the way they are these days its hard to even go out to lunch most times. Like this week has been an utter nightmare."
"If you want to find out where your abilities come from you could have the testing done discretely I'm sure or leave it be. I've been around a lot of interesting people over the years and I'm not certain that there is really a hero type discounting Steve though I understand what you mean. Be right back." Pepper's off to get drinks which has Elena coming over to introduce herself with a hard lemonade in one hand and a bright smile. "Do you ladies need help with the grilling or the chatting? I love Ciro to death but I'll go mental if I have to listen to another rant about the hold up on the energy initiative. Save me?"

"Oh, I know." How rumor goes. "If I believed all I heard do you think I'd be dating him? Insane though I may be." A grin over that. "I'm saying that it gives me a better idea where some of these rumors begin. I'm too sensible to believe everything I read on the internet. And too damn smart to click on all the links." More laughter over that. Joan really doesn't want to see the porn. Honest. As Pepper claims Tony is gaining maturity she giggles. "That's just as bad!" Silly, Pepper!
Joan grows more serious about this week. "What's been happening? Anything I can help with?" What's gone wrong? As for testing she shrugs, "It really doesn't matter where they come from. They aren't impressive by any means." Pepper is running off and Elena appears. "Oh, hi!" Offered cheerfully. "Of course you can hide behind me. Are you the one who made the potato salad I've heard about? Pepper says you are Tony's neighbor." Come, talk and hide from ranting men!

"Definitely not. Kinda nice having someone around that I don't want to drive my heel into their foot or throw bubbly into their face. The internet is a mixed blessing. On the one hand it's a useful tool and can be enjoyed but on the other what a PR nightmare. This week? The usual really. Meetings, people wanting one thing or another, legal issues and such. On top of that some of the projects at the RnD are on hold and Tony's been busy with the trouble that the Hurricane brought to the area. You're helping already, Joan." Pepper shrugs for all of the silliness then giggles away in search of drinks.
Elena is grateful for the save and offers to help at the grill in any way that is needed. "It's nice to meet you. I am in fact the maker of the potato salad. Honestly, it's not all that special. Are you a big cookie buff? It's a simple red potato salad with bacon. I think that's why it's so popular actually. You know, bacon!" She flails a hand forgetting that she had her drink in it then chuckles as none is spilled thankfully. "Ciro and I are Tony's neighbors, yes. Ciro works over at the Research building for Tony's company. It's been a stressful week over there for them as one of their major designs fell apart then the testing facility for the energy-something-or another took storm damage so that's been a mess. Me? I'm dealing with kids who are excited about school starting up. How about you, dear? Where are you from? How did you get dragged into Tony's life? You know, typical get to know you questions and gossip all at once."

Laughter about kicking and throwing drinks, "I appreciate not having beverages thrown at me." A wink to Pepper, and with the assurance she's already helping, Joan doesn't keep Pepper. From the looks of things Elena has already found a drink. Of the alcoholic kind. Not that Joan minds, but she worries for Tony. He's off over there, so she supposes it doesn't matter. "Bacon? That certainly explains things!" Noted with a grin. "You know, we should get some of that out here. Bacon on burgers.." Not that she rushes off for it. Asks either Pepper or Jarvis should they appear. Wouldn't that be a wonderful addition?
After that there are explanations, "Oh, I'm sorry!" About the test that failed due to the storm. "That's horrible. Is there any hope at all?" Lots of people had trouble of course, but most weren't people she knew, even in passing. "I'm glad the schools could still start." A smile, and then questions about her. Laughter for questions and gossip. "Me? My life is boring. Which is probably why Tony is dating me." A wink there. "I'm from Missouri. Moved to New York in my late teens and have been here ever since. I live in Brooklyn. As for Tony, well, that's kind of a funny story. I've a lousy memory for faces and ran into him at this fun raiser I was helping run. Had no idea who he was, and this handsome, yet a total jerk of a guy named Tony decided to steal my datapad and make poor Mr Stark pay a ton of money for this piece of art." The smile she wears grows as she tells, and as she tends to burgers. "Much to my embarrassment Miss Potts, who I had met in helping with the event, confirmed it was him."
Joan glances to Elena. "I thought that was the end of that, but we kept running into one another. He insists it's chance, but finally he got up the nerve and asked me out. Not sure he knew what to do with a woman who wouldn't throw herself at him."

As Joan and Elena are at the grill Jarvis happens past on his way to get an inflatable basketball toy for the pool when he overhears the comment about possibly having bacon brought out. "I will gladly bring some out after I toss the pool toys in for the kids." Into the pool goes the inflatable goal as well as the ball and a few other toys. Tony snags the floating basketball handing it to Katie then launching her into the air as she giggles and misses a slam dunk by a mile. Still the little girl comes up laughing and throws the ball over to Rhodey who calls for a falling away three pointer that gets nothing but net. Jarvis has gone indoor to pull out the pepper bacon!
"I wouldn't worry overly much about things over at Ciro's work. I can't tell you how many times something's failed and the group has managed to pull things out. It just pushes back the timetable a bit which is stressing not to mention the repair work that needs to be done. Cranky engineers…" she sighs dramatically. "Ahh, a pretty solid resident then. Glad you're here rather than not here. That's quite a beginning with Tony, Joan. Doesn't surprise me though as he can be difficult. To tell the truth I don't remember the last time he's actually asked someone out. I think it might have been before my time actually." Pepper reappears offering a drink to Joan and has a cranberry version of what Elena has. "Oh dear, what've I missed?"

"Thank you, Jarvis!" Joan exclaims of the offer to fetch bacon. She watches the pool antics a time, listening and nodding to Elena, then gladly adding bacon to her grilling. "I'm glad." That things aren't that bad. "I've never done any work like that, so have no real basis for comparison. I would have to assume that taking longer is bad and does indeed make for cranky engineers." Still, she's grinning. As for her meeting Tony she chuckles, "He was adorable. Had no idea what to say."
The arrival of Pepper has Joan accepting the drink only if it doesn't have alcohol. "I can't drink alcohol." Said apologetically. Otherwise she thanks Pepper. "You missed me telling Elena about how I met Tony, and I was just starting to tell about how he asked me out. I'm not sure he's ever done that before. Been finding there are a lot of things he's never done that I've always taken for granted. Like getting a slurpy at a convenience store. He'd never been in one. Our dates are always kind of strange. We go riding or he loves movies.. things he's not had much experience in. It's been sweet."

The grilling is going well as cooked items start getting to the point where they can be added to the empty platters that will be brought over to the tables. Elena talks a bit about Ciro's work as nothing is overly sensitive and requires secrecy. The mother of two does find it amusing that Joan reveals a side of Tony that isn't seen all that often. Pepper has brought Joan a non-alcoholic beverage so there is no concern there. Happy has entered the pool with Anna to join in on the water games playing with the kids and batting balls around. "Sadly, the relationship front is terrible. Also, his earned reputations are being shattered. We should x'snay on the nerd factor lest Tony overhear and attempt to drown himself." The girls giggle and start helping Joan plate up things that are done and ferry them over to the tables. Jarvis is happily bringing out salad, french fries and baked beans w/melted cheese on top.
Rhodey is the first to pull himself out of the pool to dry off and help out then soon everyone else leaves the toys be and starts preparing for the food. Kids are dried off, adults shuffle things around at the tables, and drinks are organized. The kids get a burger and a hot dog a piece as Ciro helps load up their plates and the rest starts making it's way to the much larger table. The whole process takes awhile though everyone seems happy about how the day is going. The music is turned down a hair to keep from overpowering conversation and once the grill is done with everyone settles in. "You know what's the best part about all of this? The men have to clean up!" Elena announces. Tony's sitting at the far end of the table next to Joan and waiting for the food to be passed down to reach him. "Are you having a good time? I hadn't intended to strand you at the grill."

Once meat is ready she asks for the platter and loads it once someone offers it. Hold things there while she transfers? Sips her drink on occasion. Gets the bacon all crispy and onto another plate. There's enough to where it's a fairly big pile loaded up there. "We are feeding an army apparently." Noted cheerfully. Joan closes the grill lid once everything is off and away, making sure the heat is turned off if there is a switch. Wouldn't do to leave it burning. She stays out of the feeding of kids, content to watch the goings on. So she sits herself near Tony and laughs that the men have to clean up the mess. "That sounds good with me."
"I am." Assuring Tony that she's having a good time. "Don't worry about it. I haven't been able to speak to Pepper in weeks, and Elena is very nice. I like meeting people you call your friends. It means a great deal to me that you trust me enough for this." Beaming and happy she waits her turn and takes a burger as it comes along. Loads her plate with other things, and even adds veggies to the inventor's next to her. Just a little. "Humor me and eat just a little." But that's an order.

"A small army," Rhodey points out then greets Joan for he's not had the pleasure of meeting her just yet. There's some good natured teasing about dating Tony which Happy jumps into as food passes around. "Drinks?" Rhodey asks before he attempts to sit down. Those without one and are not reaching into the container in the center of the table are passed drinks then Rhodes sits down to start portioning out food for himself. "I do hope everyone brought an appetite for we still have dessert stashed away as well," Tony points out setting his bottle of juice out of the way then accepting the dish of french fries that has made it to him while Joan talks with him. "I wish some of the others had been able to stop by. At least this is turning out well and you've met a few people." Smiles while setting fries onto his plate then passing the plate over towards Jarvis who is seated across from him. "I'm quite sure you're not out to destroy my company or steal all of my stuff." Frowning when a small addition of salad is put on his plate then takes up the plate with the meat on it which is a distraction. "I knew you'd gang up on me," grumbled though he's not angry. Plate handed off Tony goes about putting his burger together meticulously. Bun, burger, bacon just so, ketchup then mustard and finally the other piece of bun. There's a section for ketchup for the fries and the salad looks to be shoved off to the side.

As she's teased about dating Tony, Joan teasingly insists she has experience with raising problem children. Doesn't have any trouble handling their comment, smiling the whole time. Meets Rhodey quite happily, always glad to meet another friend. Assures she already has a drink, and pointedly doesn't touch Tony's plate as he so carefully builds his perfect burger. "I knew you'd want bacon." Said with a smile. She adds more than a smidge of green to her plate, and doesn't care if things mesh together. No teasing for that Tony must be just so. "Aw, I can't steal anything? Not even your heart?" Company or stuff? Psh. What would she do with it?
"If we don't you would eat only HoHos and you know it." This as she adds condiments to her own burger and some ketchup on her fries. Just a little. "Maybe someday I can meet the Avengers that you like." Making sure to phrase things that way. She passes a couple of serving dishes she doesn't want, but takes some of the beans. Those look yummy. "Beans? They have cheese." Asked of Tony, but she lets him dish them out. Already played with his plate enough.

There is laughter around the table as everyone seems to be getting along well if ganging up on Tony a bit which is pretty typical."Not even the office supplies!" Pepper offers waving a menacing fry in Joan's direction. "That was ever so sweet and cliche Joan," Tony winks at Joan about stealing his heart. "I could survive on Ho-Ho's and Red Bull. I've done it before. I'm just putting that out there for when you all try to pile things down here." There's a lot of arguing about this of course and more food is passed around until everyone's happy. "The one's I don't get along with tend to avoid me and vice versa. I haven't seen Hawkeye in ages as an example. I would like for you to meet them if they've time. You'll probably run into them at random as that seems to happen more often than not." When the beans are offered Tony finds he has no room on his plate thanks to the salad! A bit of shifting about and a thanks is offered for the passing of the dish then he adds a spoonful or two of beans before setting the dish down nearby. The meal is enjoyed by all though Tony is far slower and eating due to constantly getting into everyone's conversations. The kids clean up and go to play video games inside in the living room as the stuffed men clean up and the women are left to lounge poolside with their respective drinks.
Eventually the women are joined by the men and Jarvis departs for the Avenger Mansion to see if anyone over there is in need of anything. The Moretti's must pack up and leave before any dessert is brought out because the kids are wearing down and thank everyone and say their goodbyes. This leaves a small group outside nursing drinks as the sun begins to slowly creepy towards the horizon. Happy brings up Joan's bike out front and asks all sorts of questions which draws Rhodey into the conversation about his own bike which gets everyone going for a bit about various bike's and the racing circuit.

Not even office supplies? "Yes, Ma'am!" Even salutes at Pepper, grinning the whole while. "No, you only think you have." About the energy drinks. After that she digs in and eats. The potato salad is of course complimented, for it's very good. Joan joins in the conversations as best she can, but mostly she's quiet. Doesn't mind either. Can watch and learn about the people this way. "I'm sure I will." Run into the Avengers. Finishing before Tony, the woman wraps an arm around his waist and loosely holds while he eats and talks. Even rubs at his back a little. Enjoying the company and companionship available here.
Once it's time for the guys to clean up, Joan peels out of some layers to show her bikini and gets in a little swim. This is mostly derailed by conversation, and she spends much of the time holding to the edge, talking. Also in saying good-byes as the family leaves. Nice meeting people! And very nice evening indeed! Especially when the bike is brought up. Now that she knows something about! Pulls herself out to sit on the edge of the pool, explaining the cycle and her choices. Nothing happier than when speaking about motorcycles and racing. Joan knows her bikes and their engines.

The day has gone well! There hasn't been any fighting, burning down of houses, or burnt food so it's a first and hopefully will start a trend. There's still a chance that a giant sea crab might find it's way back to this part of Long Island to take revenge upon Tony for nearly cutting a limb off of it but what's the likelihood of that happening? Tony tried to get out of cleaning up by slipping an arm around Joan and claiming mandatory couple time but he was eventually banished by the combined cooks glares. With a kiss to her cheek he went to help the boys and after the departure of the Moretti's and Jarvis he finds himself sitting on the edge of a lounger being a part of the conversation about various street and racing bikes. Everyone here at least owns a bike if not makes their own repairs on them so it's a rather lengthy conversation broken up by laughter about some of their misfortunes when it came to their hobby. Every once in awhile Tony bats at Joan with his foot and mentions that they've gone out of town to see a race or two in the last month which makes the others jealous. "Hey, I would have offered," Tony insists. Happy and Rhodey clearly think not. "Alas party people, Anna and I must go. She has something to do with her family tomorrow and is my driver for the evening. How ironic is that?" Happy says finishing off his last drink and heading over to put the container in with the recyclables. "Thanks for inviting us over, Tony. Nice to see you all and to meet you Joan. Try to convince Tony to pull one of the repulsor bikes out for a test spin." Happy and friend depart with a wave.

If the crab comes to visit maybe they can make amends somehow. No? Ah well! Joan chases Tony off to get his share of cleaning done, and enjoys her time in the pool. Brief though it is. After the cleaning she happily sits with Tony, leaning against him. "It was lovely to meet you, Happy, Anna." Offered with a smile. There's surprise about the repulsor bikes though, for that's not a concept she's ever heard of. "Aren't repulors those things in your armor? The ones that glow?" Holds up a hand to help show what she means. No, Joan still doesn't know a lot about these things. "Oh! And wasn't there dessert?" Says that with a blink of remembering. "Don't tell me we all forgot about dessert?" After that huge meal? Is anyone surprised?

"Oh! The repulsor bikes," Rhodey snaps his fingers. "I've been meaning to see if I could get my hands on one to test drive one weekend but I've not been in town for awhile. So Stark…." Rhodey leads in hoping to butter the billionaire up to get his hands on one of the bikes for a weekend. "I know that look, and yes the glowing things in my gear Joan." Tony rubs at her shoulders as she leans against him while Rhodey continues to try and find a way to get Tony to agree to release a bike. "Meet up with me tomorrow and I'll pull the bike from the garage. It's street legal though you will need to have a crash course in how it works for it goes far faster than I should admit to." At the mention of dessert everyone suddenly remembers that there is quite a lot of dessert items to be had in the kitchen that everyone forgot about. Pepper finds it amusing and leads the way back towards the house. Rhodey offers to help Joan up to her feet then Tony follows bringing up the rear. With his hand at Joan's back as he enters the house, "The bike I've been riding around on has a repulsor tech engine. That's why it makes very little sound." Peering past her to see what Pepper is pulling out of the fridge.
A banana pudding with vanilla wafers, a cake, there's a cherry pie as well. "Ice cream should be in the freezer, Pep." Tony calls out from across the kitchen. Pepper turns to dig ice cream out as well while Rhodey pulls bowls and plates out as well as spoons. "Good thing I know my way around here," Rhodes comments as he opens drawers to pull out something to serve the various dishes with. "Also, that I'm staying over. I had one too many beers which is fine. Joan?" He offers her a plate then a spoon.

It's like there have been magic words spoken and Joan is fascinated. "May I see it too?" Asked with obvious interest. Doesn't assume she gets to, no sir. Accepting Rhodey's help up, there's a warm thank you and she pulls on her clothing after toweling off what little water remains. There's no problem in being close to Tony though, either shoulder massage, nor in being close as they go inside. Then Tony admits his bike has that engine. "Are you marketing that? I would so buy one." Eyes are bright as she thinks about the possibilities. "I don't care how long I had to save." A little bounce in her step as she thinks about it all. "Your bike is utterly amazing, Tony!" Bliss!
Accepting plate and spoon she smiles brightly, "Thanks! I could give you a ride home if you need, Mr Rhodes." And she waits her turn for pudding and cake, with a smidge of ice cream. Yum! "Dating Tony is going to make me gain a hundred pounds I swear." Said as she happily licks her spoon clean after a bite. Leans over and offers Tony a banana flavored kiss. "You throw a good party."

"Of course you can," Tony sounds a bit surprised that Joan would think she wouldn't be allowed to see it then again it's not something that many know about outside of a small circle of friends and that one police officer in Nevada who pulled Tony over for going over a hundred down the highway. "It's not something that we were going to bring out right away as it's still in testing. If something goes wrong the worst that could happen is I go flying down the highway without the bike." Enters the house clad in his swim trunks with a towel draped around his neck until he casts it off to the side on a nearby chair. There's a smile for Joan's enthusiasm about the bike but no mention of how expensive something like that would be as it hasn't been worked out quite yet.
"Please, call me Jim or Rhodey. Thank you for the offer of a ride but I thought I'd hang out around here to annoy Tony and if we're going to pull some of his toys out of the garage tomorrow I might as well stick around for that reason too." Pepper giggles as desserts are dished out all around, "I run around handling his life so I burn off the calories. I think you'll be ok. This sort of thing doesn't happen every day though you ought to worry about the take out." As Tony picks up his spoon to sample some of the pie he leans over to share a kiss with Joan and is smiling as he cuts a piece of pie off with his spoon adding in a portion of ice cream as well, "I'm glad you approve."

Delighted in permission, Joan blushes a little about the bike being in testing. "Um, Tony.. the worst that could happen to me is ruining my clothing." Says that sheepishly, her voice dropping a little. So not used to mentioning it, but all the people here are used to worse so she feels she can say it. "Hundred mile an hour tumble hurts the bike only." Trying to assure him of that. The look is because she knows from experience. Just not quite at the hundred mile mark. Was close though!
Jim wants to stay and she nods with another smile. "I'll see you in the morning then. I have to head home and take care of some things in the morning. Knowing Tony he won't be up until noon anyway. I'll have time." As Pepper assures her, Joan sighs. "I sure hope so." But soon there's a grin showing that she's kidding. Sadly, however, once the dessert is done, Joan takes her leave. Gives everyone a proper good-bye, and Tony a more proper kiss. "Call me when you wake? I'll come over and see the bike then." Will he remember? She doesn't know, but she's going to trust him. After that, she dons her attire and returns home.

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