I'm not that short- he's just that tall.
He had the arrival story locked up and watertight. He was coming to visit, yes, he was bringing someone, and no, don't worry, they'd take a cab from the airport. From a flight that was scheduled to land well after they would actually make the trip, to avoid any peering out the window. (Surprise! Took an earlier flight!)

Standing on the doorstep, he looked up at Loki with a faint smile, finger hovering over the doorbell. "Ready? Last chance to back out if you want."

It's not a SNAFU, because that would imply that the fuck-ups are normal.
Oh no.
He'd had missions go south before. It was part of the job. Having one go south this early, though, was almost beyond the pale.

It was just recon. He'd arrived well in advance of when his target was going to show up. He'd ordered a drink to blend in while he waited.

A third of the way through the drink, he started feeling... fuzzy around the edges in a way that couldn't possibly be explained by the drink alone.

This was bad. There'd been a leak, and he was not in sufficient form to deal with it as easily as usual.

I ain't been droppin' no eaves, sir, honest!
I have tons of minutes.
Coulson was leaning on his kitchen counter, phone to his ear, managing to hold a conversation while eating a bag of microwave cheese popcorn. Granted, it's not all that difficult, as the conversation is a bit one-sided, and that side does not belong to the SHIELD agent. His answers are short, and the pauses between them long and... popcorny.

"Yeah, going fine."

"Same old same old. Not that exciting."

"Well, it's me."

A little smile. "Also going fine."

"Yes, I... You know me by... Yeah. Yeah."

"We'll see. With any luck."

"All right, all right. Have fun. Tell Dad I said hi."

"Yeah, love you too."

He hung up then, and tucked his phone away, returning to the popcorn.

We have seriously strange ideas sometimes.
I have clearance.
Coulson's work day had been not any more out of the ordinary than usual. Granted, one man's normal was another's idea of complete insanity, but everything was relative.

At any rate, he'd managed to head home in the relatively early evening, which was really doing remarkably well, even given the effort he'd made as of late not to work ridiculously late unless absolutely required.

He had a kitten to get home to, after all. He smiled a little to himself as he unlocked his door and pushed it open.

Roses are red, violets are blue, Coulson is cooking a dinner for two.
I can be quite pleasant.
Coulson knew from the start that given the circumstances, actually celebrating Valentine's Day was far from a requirement. But a special occasion was a special occasion, whether or not you were in college and dating the cute girl from your calculus class or whether you were well out of college and inexplicably dating an alien god.

Cooking anything more involved than 'Unwrap, toss in microwave' wasn't exactly something he commonly did (any more than leaving work early, really), but following directions was, and really, that's all recipes ended up boiling down to in the end. So with meticulous preparation, adherence to each step of all instructions provided, and good ingredients, he'd gotten a dessert in the fridge and some nearly finished fish in the oven.

He doublechecked the timer and then left the kitchen to set the table. Special occasions, after all.

For justabitoffun
The drive back home had been surprisingly uneventful, aside from the timing of his going home being an event in and of itself. Phil had spent most of a week with minimal sleep at best and it was leading up to, well, to the conversation he was going to be having once he stepped in the door.

He wasn't sure exactly how it would play out, and he still found himself looking forward to it.

He parked the car and climbed out, grabbing his tie and draping it loosely around his neck, but not tying it. Not much point now, of all times. He made his way upstairs and then took a deep breath, unlocked the door, and stepped inside.

"Not used to the drive back here in rush hour traffic."


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