Little Orphan Spider 4

Peter was close to the group home, when suddenly his senses went crazy and he felt his skin crawl, telling him he had a bogey on his...six? Or was it nine? He didn't know, but he had someone following him. 

With a quick look, he didn't see anyone, but suddenly felt his left side tingle and he swung to the right, watching as a black arrow flew past him. "Oh come on! I don't have time for this!"

The teen sped up his web shooting, looking on the rooftops for the shooter, but he didn't seen anyone. Until, he cornered a building and found himself staring at none other than Hawk-Eye. And he was trained on Peter with a wicked looking arrow. 

"Holy crap!" the boy shouted. "You're Hawk-Eye! I'm a big fan! But, as much as I'd love to meet you, I have to get home!" 

The archer shot and Peter dodged, much to the man's chagrin. "Just what is this guy?" Peter heard him ask thanks to his enhanced hearing.

"That's not very nice!" the boy shouted as he dodged another arrow. "I'm just the friendly neighborhood Spider-Man!" Another arrow, dodged. "Now stop!" He got out of the man's sights, landing in a nook of a building, trying to control his breathing. 

If Mr. Martin checked in on him right, Peter was in so much trouble! "What is with these guys?" he asked himself. He was used to Iron-Man coming to 'encourage' him to join the Avengers, but Hawk-Eye was new. He never knew Mr. Stark would try and hurt him!

Suddenly an arrow thunked into the wooden board next to Peter's head, making the boy yelp. "Hey! You could have put out somebody's eye with that!"

Making sure his web shooters were attached to his wrists-they always were- he waited for the archer to make an appearance again, which he did. Taking aim, Peter shot twice, sticking the man's arms to the wall, his bow useless now. "Sorry! But, if it makes it any better, that will dissolve on its own in two hours! Later!" And Peter disappeared.

But, Hawk-Eye was shocked. He'd heard Spider-Man's voice....and he couldn't be as old as Tony had said. He sounded like he a kid....but, that was impossible....wasn't it?


It took twenty minutes for Peter to get home and strip and get dressed again. It was a little painful, since one of the arrows had actually clipped his side, but that would heal in an hour, tops. 

Peter was just putting his shirt on, when he heard a knock and pulled the material hurriedly over his head, jumping  onto his bed just in time for his door to open.

"Came to check on ya," Mr. Martin said cheerfully, smiling softly on the boy.

Peter wasn't sure how this man ran a group home for boys, the way he kept his cool all the time. "I'm still here," the teen sighed, hoping he wasn't sweaty. "Being bored." The man chuckled.

"I know being punished is no fun, but it is for your own good. And heck, you're the most well behaved boy here, so you're not used to this." Mr. Martin picked up Peter's legs and sat, placing the limbs in his lap. He missed the twinge of pain when the boy's waist was pulled. "So, excited about the internship?"

At that the boy's eyes lit up. "Yes! I mean, I couldn't believe it when I read that letter! How cool is it that I'll be working in the same building as the Tony Stark? It-it's been my dream for years to get a job at Stark Industries and help people."

The man nodded. "I know it has. I've read your file," he chuckled. "But, in all seriousness, I'm so proud of you, Peter. You have no idea how much." He patted the boy's thigh and stood, dropping the boy's legs with a smirk. "And, good job on the lawn today. I may have you cut it every week." This made Peter groan and his head fell back on the bed, making Mr. Martin laugh as he closed the door.


Finally, it was nighttime. Spider-Man time! Well, not yet. Peter had told Mr. Martin that he'd finished his homework-which wasn't a lie- and he was heading to bed. But, he was actually heading out to patrol.  He checked his side and was pleased to see it was healed faster than he thought it would.

That was a good thing. Making sure to check if Mr. Martin was asleep, listening carefully he could hear the man's soft snores mixed in with the other boy's at the home.

He tugged on his mask and swung out of his bedroom window to visit Ned. And, that was how he found himself hanging outside his friend's window while his mom talked to him for about forever. She left and Peter crawled in through the open window. "Finally! I thought she'd never leave!"

"Sorry about that. She likes to ask about my week and all that."

Peter felt a pang of jealousy, but pushed it down with a smile. "That's nice, man. Is that mine?" the boy eyed the plate filled with Enchilada's, his stomach growling at the smell.

"Have at it. She tried something different, but I couldn't taste it."

As soon as Peter took his first bite, he could tell the woman made them from scratch instead of buying the seasoning packets. He was in heaven. "Oh man, these are so flipping good! I wish the home would make something like this. Today it was 'mystery meat'. Meaning, if you got sick, it was a mystery from what." He smiled as he wolfed down the food on the plate, half of them gone in minutes.

"Oh man, that sucks. But, now you're here! So, you ready?" Ned took out the box and Peter nodded, his cheeks puffing out with food. Within the next hour they had more than half of it together, but then the sound of sirens could be heard and Peter looked up.

"I gotta go. Finish it tomorrow night?"

"Definitely. I'll get on the computer and tell you where those sirens are coming from."

"Cool. See ya!" Peter flipped out the window, shooting a web and started toward the direction they were coming from, hiding the Bluetooth in his ear.

"Spider can you hear me?" Ned's voice came into his ear when Peter was down the block.

"Loud and clear, chair guy." Peter could practically feel his friend's smile.

"The sirens are coming from a police raid of a drug ring on Layton and Baxter. You sure you got this?"

"Yeah, sure. I can handle this." He sped up, using the wind tunnel created by the buildings to propel himself forward. 

The night wind was a little chilly at night around the start of spring, the winter still in the air. But, Peter loved it. The tingling of his fingers as he swung from the webbing he created, the exhilaration of being in the air, sometimes doing a flip for the public's entertainment. It was great!

"Uh-oh," Ned said suddenly. "Peter, they've got some pretty bad weapons too.  I just hacked the swat teams body cams. They don't look like their from Earth. They look...alien."

That made Peter almost pause, but he shot another web, now able to see the red and blue lights in the windows of buildings. "Great. That means whatever the Avengers brought here, left some surprises behind. How many of their messes do I have to clean up? Seriously, it's getting ridiculous." He snapped the webbing from his wrist and landed on top of a telephone pole, watching the scene. Everything looked calm, until suddenly, it wasn't.

Peter let out a shout as an explosion went off, big enough to knock him off the pole, but he caught himself and watched the scene. Bodies lay everywhere, some moving, some not. The teen's eyes went wide as he scanned the area. "No..." he whispered. "Ned! Is the camera still working?"

"Y-yeah, it is. That was the craziest thing I've ever seen! Did you see that explosion!"

"Yes, Ned, I did. Now, tell me if there's anyone alive in the building!" Peter could hear the clicking of keys in the background of Ned's muttering before he answered.

"Yes, there are people still alive. I have no clue how, but-"

"Great," the teen cut him off. "I'm going in to help try and evacuate the people. Call for paramedics!" He shut the blue tooth off then and jumped to the ground, checking on the guys that were moving. "Help is on the way," he told them. "Just hold tight. I need some help if there's anyone available to go into the house!"

In seconds there was an army of slightly injured police officers moving forward in a hurry, with Spider-Man leading them. Peter took off into the house, going to the more dangerous areas of the collapsing two-story house, where he found hardly anyone. 

A hand was sticking up from the rubble. "Hey! If you can hear me, I'm going to grab your hand and pull you out, okay?" He crouched down and grabbed the hand, but when he went to pull it out, suddenly it turned to ash in his grip. The teen could only stare at the collapsing boards in shock. What happened? What could have done this?

"Hey, Spider-Man!" a police officer called down the hall. "Are there any survivors?"

Peter could only stare at the spot for a moment, before another call got him to jolt out of shock. "N-no....there's no one alive in here..."

He was shaking. Nothing felt real. Six months, he'd never seen a dead body before, and then he comes across a hand. A hand and he freaks out. "N-ned," he said shakily once he remembered to turn the blue tooth back on. He had to hear a voice he knew. "I need to get out of here....anywhere....."

"Are you okay?"

Peter didn't say anything, just walked out of the building. He didn't look at anyone, not the survivors, and especially not the sheet covered bodies. Instead, he shot a web and took off. The minute he was away from the scene, he let the tears out with a scream. He would never be able to forget the sight of the hand, the blackened hand, turning to ash from Peter just touching it.

He shot a web and another, not caring where he was going, until he was too tired to move. He made it to a building ledge and collapsed against it, his hands able to keep him up as he sobbed. He knew, taking this job, he knew he would most likely see something horrible, but he couldn't predict his reaction to actually seeing it.

He was repulsed, disgusted....and scared. He was so scared. Even though there was a nip in the air, the teen shook as if he were standing in a refrigerator for hours. 

Tears were pouring down his face, soaking the mask. He was about to take the mask off, when he felt someone behind him and he pulled it down. "I'm really not in the mood, Stark," he bit in a watery voice. He couldn't stand talking to arrogant man right now.

"Not Tony," A strong voice said and Peter jumped to his feet, holding his arms up in defense. "Easy. I don't want to hurt you, I just wanna talk." 

Captain America stepped out from the shadows, his mask not even on, since the whole world knew who he was anyway. "Hey, what happened?" The man noticed the dark stains on the vigilante's mask. "Are you hurt?" He reached for the super-hero, only to have his hand smacked away.

"Don't touch me," a voice said that didn't sound like what he'd heard a minute ago.

"Okay, no touching. What happened?"

Peter sniffled. "Nothing that you care about. And what is it with you guys suddenly? I mean, first Tony Stark, then Hawk-Eye, and now finally you? Why are you all so desperate for me to come to your side? Because, I am no no one's side but my own, do you hear me?" He was angry about the weapons, and the destruction they caused. "Why would I want to join a team that set loose weapons like...like..."

Peter's breathing got heavier and he stifled a sob. "You are all just making things harder for the world we live in! So do me a favor, and stop coming to me, okay? Just, let me protect whoever you consider 'out of your pay-grade'." Shooting a web, he jumped from the roof and disappeared into the night, heading home to rest and hopefully get some sleep, not noticing the hurt look the followed him until he was out of Captain America's sight.


Sunday morning came slowly for the masked Spider. All night he lay in his bunk bed, climbing up to the top bunk to stay out of Mr. Martin's eye. He wanted to stay away from everyone's eye today. He didn't even think about closing his eyes after the first time he tried, and the nightmare came, the hand coming  alive, grabbing at him. 

So, Peter just stayed awake reading a book, or studying. Anything to prevent him from sleeping. So when the sun came up, he was more than grateful for his punishment, because he didn't know if he could even stay awake in school. 

He just lay in bed until he felt his stomach rumble. He knew his metabolism was crazy fast, so he needed to eat like, all the time, but that day, he just couldn't think of food, even though his body craved it.

So that night, he sneaked out the window again and went straight to Ned's place, waiting outside the window for his friend to tell him it was all clear.

"Whoa, dude, you look horrible. What happened last night?"

"When the bomb went off last night...it did a lot of damage. I went in and...and there was a hand sticking out of the rubble. When I grabbed the it and went to pull the person out, it...the hand just..." he shook his head, tears burning his eyes. 

Peter swallowed, then his stomach let out such a loud gurgle, it even surprised him and the teen blushed as his friend stood up, but Peter shook his head. "I can't," he whispered.

"Hey, no worries. Mom got take out tonight, and I asked if we could get an extra pie. If anything, I'll just say I was up all night gaming or something and ate it." Ned left the room quietly and came back with a plate full of pizza. "You have to eat, man. If you want to help people, you need to eat."

Peter felt so grateful to his friend at that moment. When he needed to hear the truth, Ned was there.

"It's a little on the cold side, but I figured it wouldn't matter." He set the plate down and in seconds, Peter was tearing into it, half if it gone in five minutes.

When the pie was gone, Peter sighed and sat on the bed with a contented smile. He loved living in New York. This city had the best pizza. It made everything better in a way.

"I was worried about you last night when you shut your earpiece off...." Ned started, twiddling his thumbs. "I know I can't be there for everything, but, I'm your guy in the chair. I'm glad you were able to tel me what happened last night, but if you need to talk to someone in the future, even if I can't give any advice, I can at least listen."

Peter felt bad instantly about what he did to his friend the night before. "I'm so sorry, Ned. I..." he took a deep breath. "I just couldn't wrap my head around what I had seen. When I saw what those weapons can do I freaked." Tears burned the brunette's eyes. "I've never seen anything like that...and I got scared. Then, Captain America came, and I feel like the Avengers are all chasing me down or something, because everywhere I go, there they are! I can't seem to shake them..."

Ned jumped up and hugged his best friend, feeling the other shaking in his grasp. "I'm so sorry..." he whispered over and over, letting his friend cry it out. When it sounded like he was done, Ned pulled away and gave him an awed look. "But, at least you got to meet Captain America! That is so cool."

Peter sobbed out a laugh, punching Ned's arm softly. "Dork."

Ned called it a win because he got his friend to smile. "Wanna work some more on the Lego we started?"


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