Thursday, July 05, 2012

Spider-Man #2 - A Boatload of Consequences Pt 1 of 2

Spider-Man #2

Original Plot by Aldalin

"A Boatload of Consequences" Pt 1 of 2

Through the starry night, a lone black spider spun his web to avoid the eagle eye of his enemy. As he continued to swing deeper into the great abyss and heightening his chance of no return every foot he went into their lair. For upon seeing his intrusion, the vigilant green soldiers would lash out at their prey without hesitation. Then, with wide eyes he caught a glance of a huge structure protruding from the volcano. A determined rush flowed through him, like a child's first visit to a toy store; he wanted to find what great new sights waited inside. He neared closer as the ringing in his head warned him of the infrared sensors, roving patrols, and security cameras. As he took the final leap, he muttered an altered version of famous words. One small step for mankind, one big leap for Spider-Man. He entered through one of the main engine vents, and was at a loss for words. He had to fight the urge to search every nook and cranny; a veritable smorgasbord of new trinkets and gadgets lay in wait for his scientific curiosity. The huge scale of the ship made him truly feel as though he was the eight-legged visitor interrupting the giant's night. He sighed in both frustration and relaxation, in frustration those that piloted this mighty ship were not present, in relaxation for the fact he would not be squashed like a minor nuisance beneath the great giant's feet. He stopped for a moment at one spot in the giant craft; he hung upside down for a brief moment. An odd feeling rolled through him like a Mac truck, it was one of déjà vu. He didn't know why it clouded his mind, along with the sensation that something was missing. Then, another sensation overwhelmed him, and he flipped a few times to put some distance between him and possibly a new enemy.

"Well, you are not Brock, so you must be Parker."

Spider-Man turned to see a rather thin white cybernetic costumed man greet him.

"Excuse me?" He tried to act as though he didn't recognize his own name.

"Well, even though our symbiotes are his other's great ancestors, they can still communicate with one and another. Surprising that the same language is kept for over four million years."

Spider-Man sighed, as he had to deal with yet another symbiotic nut. "Brock is always trying to ruin my reputation. He always linked me to that idiot photographer."

The new symbiote smiled. "Very well. I believe the mandatory introductions are in order. Let's just skip the cliché hero villain brawl shall we? I'm pretty sure you have questions and I have the answers."

Although he was at a loss for words, Spider-Man's curiosity overwhelmed him. "Fine, what's the cost?"

"It's all off the record." He replied with a bit of sarcasm. "In this guise, I refer to myself as Archeville, Dr. Archeville."

"I get it.... like an arch villain." Spider-Man prepared himself for a double cross.

"Well, to those who only wish to interfere with my plans. You do not fall into that category yet." He smiled as he added emphasis to the last word.

Spider-Man made a quick hypothesis. "So, which designate are you? One, two, three, or four."

"I'm number three if you must know. My brother is the second, and as you know Brock was the fifth."

"Brother? I don't suppose either of you want to eat my brains." Spider-Man pointed to his head.

Archeville softly chuckled. "Many of the symbiote's weaknesses have been remedied. The requirement for a certain chemical and complete symbiotic bonding is resolved with one little creature."

Spider-Man watched as part of the costume extended and revealed a small slug-like creature.

"Yuck, I guess it's better to carry that thing around then wanting to eat brains all of the time."

Archeville snickered once more. "Or to have rotting teeth from eating too much chocolate."

"I don't get it. Why are you doing all of this?" Spider-Man asked to see if any signs of a double cross were present.

"Well, let's just say I know that we share the same distinct scientific curiosities. This is what brought me here, to the Ark." The symbiote descended down, as Spider-Man had no choice but to follow.


"A rather droll but obvious reference. It housed two factions of aliens; each one brandished an insignia upon them, much like a tattoo. Most likely, the first person who happened upon this place thought of the biblical reference, and well the rest is history."

"I see, two kinds of each creature...something like that. I don't suppose you're going to tell me what they were?"
"Precisely. And, I think you will find out what they are soon enough." Archeville quickly glanced from side to side.

"What is it?" Spider-Man wondered if his Spider-Sense was off kilter.

"I'm making sure my brother is not here. He would not enjoy your visit, if you catch my meaning." Archeville continued to walk as Spider-Man followed.

"And your brother is?" Spider-Man anxiously awaited a name.

"Well, since Apocalypse was taken by an ancient Egyptian mutant, my brother decided to use an equivalent word from the German language, Gotterdamerung. He loves to think himself as the absolute end to anyone who dared breach National Security. Rather trite but effective."

Spider-Man took a hopeful guess. "He really must be one of those blind patriotic soldier types."

"Brock managed to tell you a lot before you came. Either that, or I just fell for a setup on who he might be." Archeville smirked.

"The latter." Spider-Man admitted with gall.

"I suppose you are wondering why I appear metallic in nature, and not like a cloth costume?" Archeville changed his look to one like Spider-Man's. The appearance almost looked like a white version of Carnage.

" can change back. I like the Cybersymbiote look." Spider-Man tried to hide his uneasy feeling.

"Brock complained that I looked too much like Cletus as well. But, I didn't want my brother's knight in shining armor routine either. I guess it's better for the lesser of two evils." Archeville seemed to rearrange back into his armored appearance.

"Whoa, that's quite the change. I guess your brother is into the medieval thing."

Archeville shrugged. "Something like that, yes."

"So what is it that you want from me?" Spider-Man was getting impatient.

Archeville sighed. "To keep doing what you have been doing. You see once all of this finally gets out, then I can have my old job of back-engineering the alien's technology. That's why they dubbed it Xenotech. I've heard you already bumped into our little robot friends."

Spider-Man nodded with contempt. "Yeah, I'm really beginning to get annoyed by anything mechanical."

Archeville barely held in an outburst of laughter. "Just wait and see what's next. You're going to love it. My little Xenotech Sentinels pale in comparison for what is to come."

"Look, you've got the mad scientist routine down. Just tell me what you want so I can go." Spider-Man was being wary of any double cross.

"Oh, all right. I was the one that helped Brock with his plan. I used him as a scapegoat to get information released. There, happy?"

Spider-Man glared at the conniving symbiote. "Peachy. I guess I'm the extra incentive."

"Yes, I didn't plan on Jonah assigning you, but I am happy. My brother has had some dealings with reporters and photographers that weren't quite as nice."

Spider-Man tried to make sense of his rambling. "Look, I just came here to confirm this was real not some elaborate setup or hoax by someone like Mysterio. I've done that. Now it's time for me to leave."

Archeville watched Spider-Man start to depart from the ship. "How's Mary Jane's life insurance policy?"

Spider-Man stopped dead in his tracks and turned to face Archeville. "WHAT?"

"I've got your attention now, good. I must admit that I pulled the strings to get someone else a little bit brighter than Brock. And that person is you."

Spider-Man clenched his fists. "I've had someone already pull my strings once, I won't let it happen again."
"Oh yes, the whole Goblin-Clone debacle. My best friend's father is my worst enemy that made me think I was a clone. It sounds like a teenager's conversation after she watches Jerry Springer and the Discovery channel." Archeville explained with an uncaring attitude.

Spider-Man attempted to contain to growing rage from within. "How do you know so much?"

"Very good, it takes a strong man to ask me that instead of the pitiful remark of 'You wouldn't know how I felt unless you experienced it.'"

"You're right. My patience is wearing very thin. Now, answer my question." Spider-Man stepped closer as his voice grew as cold as dry ice.

"Come on. They've kept a secret about a ship sticking out from a volcano for over fifty years and you ask how they know so much? I guess at this point of time you expect me to not answer and whip out a cigarette and light it." Archeville knocked on Spider-Man's head with a fist.

Spider-Man gripped Archeville's arm tightly. "I don't care what happens to you, but I do have a responsibility to those who might get hurt besides Brock. I need to know if there is anyone else in immediate danger."

"There is only one other little woman who got away. A former prospective co-worker of mine, her name is Josie Beller. She was freed when Venom decided to jump ship. But no need to worry. She has company of the super heroic kind. Although, they are relatively new, pardon all the puns."

Spider-Man released his grip. "You are completely demented. If Mary Jane or this Josie Beller get hurt, I'm coming back to find you. And, I will find out what was in this ship without releasing any information. I'm no longer a party to anyone's twisted little games. Find another little puppet."

Archeville sarcastically applauded. "Nice speech and without the little index cards to help you."

"I'll be sure to send you a copy. Now, if you don't mind I'll be swinging out of here." Spider-Man departed from the Ark as Archeville smiled.

"Oh, you'll have no choice in the matter I'm afraid. Watch the Second step, it's a doozy." Archeville slipped into shadows of the great empty space ship.

Late the next afternoon....

Peter placed his telescopic lens on the camera and took a shot of an armed guard right next to sign that designated the base. He quickly put the camera back in the bag as his spider-sense warned him of an approaching white truck with two guards in it. He quickly darted out of sight as the truck passed by him. He left for his return flight home, anxious to feel the warmth of his wife once more. He sat silently in hopes that his spider-sense would not warn him of any followers, who would make Archeville's threat a true one. He slipped in unnoticed into his house as he developed the pictures with a somber attitude of one whom has just attended the funeral of a friend. He popped his head in the window to see Mary Jane talking to someone, but Parker felt Brock couldn't have recovered that quickly, even with his bond to the symbiote. Mary Jane must have called in some help after all as he recommended. Peter stared in awe at the man sitting in a chair across the room, Captain America. Parker shook his head for a moment to make sure what he had just experienced wasn't causing hallucinations. Parker would have to wait to find out the answer to his obvious question later. As it was getting rather late, he grabbed the finished photo and departed for the Bugle.

Peter walked in the door as he spied a solitary light emanating from Jonah's office.

"Count on old pickle puss to always work late. I'm glad no one else is here to see this." Parker commented beneath his breath.

He knocked on the door as a booming voice replied.

"Who is it?" The editor's exclamation almost rattled the windowpane on his office door.

Peter wondered whether or not to answer. "It's me sir. I have something for you."

"Come on in boy, I've been waiting for this."

Peter was greeted with a smoke filled room and the boss with a lit stogie in his chair.

"I'm glad you made it back in one piece. What do you have?" Mr. Jameson stood up and placed his arms on his desk as he lurched forward.

Peter began to hand over the picture as his Spider-Sense started to go berserk.

What the heck is going on? Peter looked around to see if he could spot anything wrong.

"Something wrong Parker?" Jonah's facial expression grew darker.

Peter shook as he handed over the picture, his Spider-Sense wailing away at him as he did. "No, I almost got caught back there, I guess I'm a little nervous about being followed."

I just hope Mary Jane is okay. I need to get out of here and find out what is causing this!

"Oh, it's not the military you should be worried about Parker." Jonah grabbed another picture from the desk.

Peter's Spider-Sense flailed one last time, then came to a dead stop as Jonah handed him the picture. It was a picture of him taking off his mask.

Peter's instinct of protecting his identity kicked in. "Oh, Brock has always hated my guts. This is a farce."

Jonah stoically stood still. "Nice try, but this one wasn't by Parker. I checked the type of paper used to develop it. It's one assigned for military use. It came along with the envelope of the picture of that ship in the volcano."

Parker shook his head. "Brock obviously worked for the government, or a branch of it. He must have gotten one of my pictures of Spider-Man and altered it."

Jonah grunted with contempt. "You think I am that ignorant. You want to know the truth on why I treated you so roughly. Because I always thought you had the web-slinging idiot on the take. Some of the angles of your shots couldn't be possible without his help. I got my title of Editor for a reason boy. The matter of the fact that Brock would go to great lengths to get something newsworthy and not want credit for it is beyond my comprehension. That's why I sent you Parker. You have just proven to me that one photo is real, why should I believe the other one is not?"

"Look, I admit I do have Spider-Man grab a few shots for me, but he charges way too much."

Oh good one Parker, think of another brilliant one.

Jonah shook his head. "Did I mention about one third of your shots are at those particular angles? It's over son. I know who and what you are. Spider-Man, a masked menace to society."

Please, don't let this be happening! Not now! OH GOD I BETTER RES...

Jonah continued. "Your silence confirms that fact."

Parker bowed his head in submission. "Fine, it's true. You're right. I'm Spider-Man. Make it the front page if you want."

Jonah grew a bit irate. "What I am about to say, will surprise me more than it will you. Right now, my job is the Editor. Part of that job is to prioritize the news. I can't let personal feelings get in the way. In weird sense of irony, you saved yourself from being revealed by getting this picture. You see, no one would care about the Identity of Spider-Man. Everyone cares about what has been happening, with all these mechanical constructs and armored soldiers running around. Everyone has the right to know it's coming from one source, the military base at that volcano."

Parker was still at a loss for words, even though a river of relief flowed through him.

Jonah took a glance at Parker's picture. "The point is this Sector 17 will sell more than revealing your sorry face to the entire world."

Parker managed only two words from his mouth. "My job?"

"This is the surprising part. Simple blackmail. I keep the truth locked up about you and you will get the exclusive shots I need to reveal this thing piece by piece. And, one more thing. Do you have those gadgets you spin those webs with?"

Peter nervously nodded. ""

"Good. Get them for me, now." Jonah barked as Parker quickly fetched a pair from his desk.

He came back and gave them to Jonah. "Why do you want these?"

Jonah pulled out his chair. "What do you think? Sit."

Oh no....not this...please spare me this...

"Now, how do these confounded things work? And don't mess with me or I'll make your life even more miserable.

Parker showed Johan which way to point the spinners. "That way and press here to release a cord."

Jonah shot the webbing with beginner's luck and tied Parker up. He then proceeded to kick the chair as it rolled across the floor. The chair hit a bump in the floor and dumped Peter on the ground with a thud. Jonah placed the spinners with a slam on the desk and departed with one last comment.

"After all this is over, you better retire to your cobwebs boy, or I will have my day." Jonah slammed the door to his office.

This just didn't happen. Please someone wake me up.

Even with his enhanced strength, Peter could not break free of his own well-tied webbing. He struggled to at least get upright as he heard the door open once more.

"Hello? Jonah?" Parker was wondering what was next.

A freckled face, rather attractive woman entered. "You're boss just zoomed by me in a fluster and said I was to have you as photographer. And, do you mind me asking what the heck just happened?"

"No time to explain just find a real sharp object. Oh, I'm Peter Parker, tied up photographer as Jonah said."

The woman smiled. "Irene Merryweather, I'm the new reporter assigned to the Sector 17 case." {Eic Note: *The events take place a little bit after Cable #2 of MU:TF}

"Pleased to meet your acquaintance. Now, if you don't mind..."

Please, don't let her go over to the desk....

"Oh yeah, sorry." Irene instantly went over and began looking through Jonah's desk for a pair of scissors. Her eyes caught the two pictures on the desk. She stared at one, then back at Parker and at the picture again.

OH Nooo.........

The door opened with a creak as Parker and Merryweather entered his house. The Patriotic soldier of legend stood up upon their arrival. Mary Jane quickly noticed the woman along side Peter.

"Who's this?" Mary Jane glowered at Peter.

"Irene Merryweather, a new reporter for the Bugle. She and Jonah just found out...everything."

Mary Jane sat right back down from the startling statement.

"Well, then it's safe to ask you in front of someone that knows your secret. I'll just ask that you keep it off the record Ms. Merryweather." He stepped forward as both Peter and Irene regarded him with awe.

Captain America gave Parker a stern look. "I'll keep it short and simple. I know you like to play it solo. But, considering the circumstances, we can't ignore all our options. We're reforming the team. Son, we want you to be part of the new Avengers."

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