Chapter 1: Proposals

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"Since when did we run out of paper plates?" Peter yells across the apartment, scrounging around all of their kitchen cabinets just to find one paper plate for the Hot Pocket he's been looking forward to eating all day.

"Since, like, two days ago," Ned replies from the living room, adjusting his headset while he actually tilts his body every time his character moves on the video game in front of him.

This is Peter and Ned's second semester at NYU, and also their second semester in their new apartment. He was planning on staying at home with May for a few more years if he got accepted, but turns out he and Ned both got offered a full ride scholarship for their academic achievements, which included room and board. After checking out the tiny dorms, they both (and May) decided that the best option would be to rent an apartment on the outskirts of campus. Bigger, cheaper, and they both get bedrooms, and a conjoined kitchen/living room space instead of just one tiny room to share. It's still pretty small, but it's bigger and nicer than a dorm room.

It's all been great, too, besides the slightly increased bickering between he and Ned. But it's rare, and it's only on bad days, so it's bearable.

"God," Peter groans, dramatically leaning his forehead against the cabinet in sadness. "And we're out of paper towels too. We should've just gotten the real plate set like May insisted."

"Dude, just put whatever you're cooking in the microwave without a plate or paper towel. That's what I've been doing," Ned tells him, somehow able to hold a complete conversation and play a loud, action-packed video game simultaneously.

"Come on, dude, that's why this microwave is freaking disgusting now," Peter replies, looking around at all of the crusty, dried food that's been cooked into the sides and top of it.

He sighs and looks between the horrendous microwave and the Hot Pocket he's been daydreaming about during two of his midterms today. He eventually decides that his growling stomach overpowers the level 6/10 disgusting factor of the microwave, and plops it in without a plate, trying not to think about it too long.

When it's done he sits down at the table, a steaming Hot Pocket and glass of soda in front of him, and a fork in hand. He takes his first relaxed breath of his hectic day, trying to enjoy the peaceful moment.

"Finally," he sighs, cutting open the front of the pizza-sandwich, watching the melted cheese pull apart, bringing a perfectly-halved pepperoni along with it. He stares at it on the end of his fork, before closing his eyes, and bringing it to his mouth.

But it never gets there.

The door swings open loudly right as it touches his lips, and the sudden movement makes Peter drop the fork into his lap before he can even taste it.

"Walking to this stupid apartment in the rain freaking sucks," MJ walks (more like trudges messily) inside the apartment, hooking her soaking wet bag onto the chair opposite of Peter, and pulling her muddy boots off and setting them by the door.

Oh, and that's another person that made it into NYU from Midtown: Michelle Jones. Although the three of them weren't extremely close in highschool and were only casual acquaintances, they were still the only other people they knew at the gigantic, scary university, so they instinctually all flocked together eventually during their first semester.

And no, he doesn't hate MJ per se, but strongly dislike is still very fitting. He tried so hard at first to get along with her, but she's rude, snarky, obnoxious, and she bursts into their apartment at the absolute worst times she possibly could. And Peter hates that. She also teases him relentlessly about everything, when all he wants is some peace and quiet after a long day of midterm exams. It's almost like she wants him to hate her sometimes.

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