13 - Fist Fights

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We exited our shared calculus class and blended into the sea of students the following day. Gwen was chewing on some gum as she clutched her books to her chest. Mary Jane was quiet beside me, a little unusual. My gaze shifted between my two friends. It was only one more period before our lunch break and I had never seen them this quiet before, not when there was a special of cheeseburgers and fries in the cafeteria today. 

"Okay, have I missed something?" I questioned, breaking the silence. "You two are acting extremely strange. Has something happened, something that I don't know about?" Usually this time of the day on a Thursday, Gwen was bursting with new gossip she had found out in her French class. But today she wasn't jumping at the chance to discuss who was making out and who was breaking up. Mary Jane although normally hesitant to listen, would always decline each new rumour and lecture us about enjoying gossip a little too much.

Gwen glanced over at me, shaking her head. Mary Jane joined in too. "Uh, nope. Why?"

I let my shoulders rise and fall, watching the two of them, their faces blank. "So, no new gossip? Nothing you're dying to spill?" I watched Gwen, waiting for her facade to drop. Gwen was a guru at getting new gossip, so I knew by the very look in her eyes she had some. 

"Not today." Gwen shook her head again, pursing her lips. We weaved around the corner, stopping at my locker. I grabbed out another textbook and letting the quietness dump over the three of us. I didn't know why but I knew something was bugging them both. 

I sat in my hip, staring at them, holding onto my notebook tightly. "Alright, spit it out."

Gwen just pouted and Mary Jane blew some air from her cheeks. "Fine, we were trying to give you the silent treatment in hopes you would tell us about your dinner date."

I was already laughing. "Are you joking? Why didn't you just ask?"

Mary Jane shrugged, pushing some hair off her face. "We knew you didn't want to go and asking about it might have...set you off on a rant about how much you hate Peter."

Gwen nodded quickly, "Something we hear way too often." 

As I slammed my locker door shut and I twirled to face them again, almost getting shoved to the side as a kid dashed passed me. I steadied myself against my locker, glaring at the kid. "Firstly, it wasn't a dinner date." I said as we started moving down the hall again. "Secondly, I don't hate Peter."

Gwen's arm flung out, clipping me in the waist as she stared at me with wide eyes. "Did I just hear that correctly?" She gushed out. "Did Florence Parsons just declare she doesn't hate Peter Parker?"

I rolled my eyes at her while Mary Jane linked her arm through mine, giving me a big and pretty smile. "I knew this whole lab partners thing was a perfect plan."

My eyes yanked over to her, my mouth popping open. Down the hallway I spotted a crowd of students, all littering the open area. A loud chant of words were being shouted, too loud for me to actually make out what was going on. "Perfect plan? What are you talking about?"

Mary Jane glanced across at Gwen, her mouth twisting into a guilty look. I yanked my arm from her own, stepping backwards. "What plan, Mary Jane?"

Gwen stepped in, saving my pretty redhead friend from my wrath. "Flo, don't get mad..."

"You had something to do with me ending up with Parker as a lab partner?" I questioned them both, my stomach twisting with an uneasy feeling, my face heating with a familiar rage. "You knew I didn't like him but you tried to scheme anyway? That's so typical." 

Mary Jane's eyes were glassy and I knew my outburst was making her upset but I didn't care right now. "Flo, come on, just listen--"

Before I could reply another kid raced passed me, heading straight for the crowd, now ten times the size. My eyes glanced up, seeing a familiar face among the crowd. "Fight! Fight! Fight!" The words were now echoing through the hall, louder than ever. Gwen and Mary Jane both turned to see what was going on and before I knew what I was doing, I was pushing myself through the large crowd, pushing passed students egging on the fight. 

I pushed myself through until I reached the open circle, finding Flash Thompson towering over Peter. Blood dripped down from Peter's lip, swelling already taking shape. "Oh my God," The words slipped from my mouth as Mary Jane and Gwen stepped up beside me. 

"Flash, come on, cut it out!" Gwen was yelling out but Flash wasn't listening. He stepped up to Peter again, his fist coming up to reach his chest before he let it fly, aiming right for Peter's eye. But just as fast Peter jerked out of the way, Flash's fist hitting nothing but air. For a moment both boys seemed stunned, which only pissed Flash off even further. A growl came from his mouth and he lugged for Peter again, this time Peter stepped out of the way, Flash stumbling forward. 

Suddenly there was a new figure next to me and I yanked my eyes upwards to see Harry standing next to me. "Harry, do something." I sounded, my voice almost a whisper over the roar of cheers and shouts echoing through the hallway.

Harry didn't even turn to face me, just kept staring at the two boys. "Uh, Flo. I don't think Pete needs our help this time."

When I turned back to face the fight, Peter was facing away from me and I watched as he grabbed hold of Flash's fist, holding it steady. The circle of students fell silent as Peter flung Flash backwards, his body hitting the wall of lockers with a loud clang and tumbling to the ground. A massive cheer went through the crowd at the sight of Midtown's bully going down. Peter turned to the four of us, a little stunned but mostly proud of himself. Blood stained his chin and dotted the collar of his shirt but other than that, he looked completely fine. 

"Damn, Pete!" Harry raced forward, clapping his friend on the back. "Where did that come from? You've been holding out on us." 

Peter aimlessly shook his head. "Uh, I don't really know..." His voice drifted off as he watched me creep forward, already rumbling through my bag for a tissue. 

Mary Jane and Gwen were still beside me, both girls a little quiet. Gwen was shaking her head lightly, arms crossed over her chest as she stared at Flash who was slowly getting to his feet. I handed Peter the tissue, "I think you need this."

He took it with a hesitant smile, pressing it to his busted open lip. "Pretty badass, huh?"

I shook my head, hiding my smile. "You're an idiot, Parker."

Harry only grinned some more before dragging Peter away, chatting rather excitedly about the fist fight, asking where and how Peter had learnt to fight like that. I twirled back around, watching as Flash pulled himself up off the ground, groaning slightly. When he stepped a few feet away, back to his huddle of football friends, I noticed the deep dent left in the locker door he had been thrown against by Peter."How did he do it?" I whispered out, stepping forward and letting my fingertips glide across the cold metal. I thought back to the near car accident, remembering the dent that was left in the car's hood. Suddenly the hallway was filled with a ringing, snapping my mind out of it and I was already wandering off to class, my mind a little hazy. 

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