What kind of idiot had he been?! To swap the old man for his son? Every day he had bemoaned his decision with his help, the only people who would listen. The only ones that had no choice. Not before they wandered off or his anger got the best of him and they made a, necessary, hasty exit. James had only wanted someone else to suffer with him. Someone human
. But also, they had wandered into his castle without asking.
At least, the boy had pestered him less, and caused him less trouble, once he had been shown the library. But that had only made him kinder. More… reasonable. His stay seemed to be, dare he say it, happier. The castle less, now, like a prison, and more like… a holiday home. A holiday castle
. In turn, James found himself less and less angry as the days passed them by. Happier to watch from a distance as Tony would walk the grounds with his face invested in a book.
The more he watched, the more James started to pick up from Tony. He was smart, witty, and, despite James’ temper, even kind. Almost to a fault, where he was concerned. That had been shown when he had offered to switch places with his father, of course, but James had only started to realise it recently. It was up to him, now, to show some of that kindness in return.
Even though the two of them didn’t spend much time together, by James’ design - he didn’t want to make Tony’s stay any more uncomfortable that it would be - he had decided that the best thing he could do was to clean up the library. It was difficult, admittedly, but he had Mrs. Potts there to talk to him as he tried his best to grip the books between his large claws. She was calm with him as he grumbled and snarled when books slipped just as they were about to slide into their places, and it was during one of these moments, when a book had fallen and James was trying to scrape it back into his hand that he heard a timid voice.“Oh…. hello.”
He looked to his aide, and noticed her slipping out of the open doors. He knew his eyes were telling her not to go, but she winked at him and disappeared. “Uhhh…”
His voice was gravely, in part due to the aggression he’d verbalised, instead of unleashing on the books. “I just thought… I would… clean.”
He shrugged and tried again to pick up the book. “How was your… reading?”
Idiot. He was the idiot. The biggest. Couldn’t even talk to someone anymore.@Tony Stark