"Hey there stranger" Clover says.
"Hey. I wanted to know where Peter was" Ned informed her.
"Haven't seen him, he left the apartment early this morning. Last time I saw him was last night" Clover says.
Ned's shoulders slump down in disappointment, "Oh, cause I had to show him something"
Clover's curiosity peeks and she can't help but ask, "What'd you have to show him"
Ned smiles and pulls out his phone, then turns it to show her a video of a man in a red and blue gimmick, climbing up the side of a building. Clover's eyes shoot up in amazement.
"A superhero?" Clover asks.
"Yeah, he's calling himself Spiderman, I just know that Peter will flip out when he sees this. The guy's crazy and he's apparently really small, they think he's a teenager! He could be one of us!" Ned says, his voice rising with enthusiasm.
Clover smiles at Ned's fanboy antics. Despite wanting to talk more, the first period bell rings which signals the two to head to class. With a curt wave, Clover turns back to her home room and steps inside.
Mean while, Peter is nowhere near his home room. He heard a alarm go off in the city early this morning and heads straight out to the scene. After hanging some robbers from a light post, yet another sound of crime rings through his ears, sirens. Then there was a cry for help, a girl needing to be saved from an oncoming bus and a old lady needing help with her groceries (no task is too small). Time flies by and before he knows it, Peter is missing the first half of home room. Swinging from buildings with his newly designed webbing, Peter races to school, his back pack firmly around his shoulders.
Sliding through the hallways in his school clothes, Peter finally makes it to his second period, English. Although Peter isn't too upset about missing half of the class, his English teacher, Mrs. Clout definitely is. She crosses her arms over her chest as she spots Peter at the door. She marches up to the door, opens it and shoots arrows with her eyes until he's seated at his desk. The whole class chuckles as Mrs. Clout stands next to his desk, waiting for him to open up his books.
"Would you like me to get you a watch Mr. Parker?" Mrs. Clout asks with a sneer.
The class lets out a chorus of snickers.
"No-no Mrs. Clout, my phone works just fine" Peter stammers.
Her eyes narrow as Peter flips to the right page of his binder.
"Alright then, but if we're in this same situation again for the rest of the semester, things will not play out well for you, understood Mr. Parker?" Clout says.
Peter nods and the craggily old witch walks back to the front of the class. The rest of the day, luckily faired much better for Peter. Lunch with Ned was full of comic book discussions and Ned going on and on about how much fun he had with Clover, the day he bailed. Peter even got in a word with Liz, saying hi in the halls, before she said it. However, making amends with Clover would be his challenge of the day. He not only had to find some way to make it up to her, he had to come up with a better excuse than 'I wanted to take a walk because I couldn't sleep'.
Walking up to Clover, Peter taps her on the shoulder, making her head turn towards his. A smile creeps along her face as she shuts her locker and gives him a quick hug.
"I got lonely walking without you this morning." she says.
"I'm sorry, I didn't sleep and I wanted to take a walk" Peter says, using the exact excuse that he had planned not to use. Mentally face palming, he realizes how terrible he is at improvising.
Clover nods, knowing by now not to inquire further into Peter's poor excuses.
"It's fine, but you're walking home with me right?" Clover asks.
Peter checks his watch and pouts, "I actually can't, I have-I have an English thing...um got to go! See you tonight Clove!" he says, running off down the hall.
Clover's shoulders slump in disappointment, she's losing her cousin and she's losing him to something that he won't even tell her about. She walks out of the school and spots Liz across the road, picking up her pace, she runs up next to her best friend and hugs her from behind.
"How ya doing Lizzy?" Clover says.
"Well hey there Lucky Charm, just heading to my dad's car. Where's Peter?" Liz asks, looking around for the brunette.
"Bailed, had some English thing, which was so obviously a lie. He lied to my face!" Clover exclaims, flustered with anger.
Liz places two hands on her friend's shoulder, "You my friend, are coming to my house. It's time we had a girl on girl discussion"
Leading the way to her father's car, Liz pulls Clover by the hand until they sit buckled up and ready to go. The drive is short since Liz lives only about twelve blocks from the high school. Stepping out of the car and into the house, Liz unlocks the front door of their brownstone to reveal the elegant entryway and maple staircase that leads to the second floor. Each time Clover enters the Allan home, she feels like she's just entered a mansion. The brownstone, like most is old and beautifully designed, with high doorways and intricate stone work in the oddest places. It always smells of fresh wood, soap and a faint scent of thyme.
Running up the stairs, the girls walk into Liz's huge bedroom. The two sit themselves down, cross legged on her queen sized bed, the blue checkered sheets matching the baby blue walls.
"So Peter ditched you today after school?" Liz asks.
"And this morning and he bailed on Ned yesterday and lied to me about it both times" Clover explains.
"How long has he been doing this? Have you asked him about it?" Liz questions.
"Since my dad...died. I've asked him about it a million times, he doesn't give me a straight answer" Clover says.
Liz pats her friend's hand, "Maybe its Peter's way of grieving. You know he's never been one for talking, maybe being away from people is his way of coping. You need to give him time. You also need to give yourself time, it hasn't even been a week since you were covered in your dad's blood Clove. You have to stop rushing everything, let things take their course."
Clover sighs and smiles a bit, but she can feel the tears welling in her eyes, "I know, I know. I just want things to go back to normal you know? I want my family back, I want my dad back. I just miss him so much Liz!" Clover says and sobs into her friend's shoulder.
The rest on the evening is spent talking about Clover's father, reminding each other of all the childhood memories he was a part of and eating ice cream while watching their favourite old movies. Sixteen Candles, Casablanca, West Side Story, Singing in the Rain, Gone with the Wind and their favourite, Funny Girl. Despite the worry they had about Peter, it was pushed to the side. For once, Clover thought of herself and didn't worry about what her cousin did, because she couldn't control him.
YOU ARE READING
> Peter has friends that he has known for most of his life, people that have always been there for him, people that care for and worry about him. However, Peter doesn't have anyone like Clover in his life. No, she is not some best friend that he has...