Author: Hawki PM
Oneshot: Sometimes, it really sucks living in New York. Not only does one have to contend with super-villains, you also have to deal with the damage their fights with Spider-Man cause. Luckily, there's always insurance to lend you a helping hand...Rated: Fiction K+ - English - Drama/Humor - Words: 732 - Reviews: 4 - Favs: 2 - Published: 02-25-12 - Status: Complete - id: 7869417
|A+ A- Full 3/4 1/2 Expand Tighten|
Joseph Lampson hated Spider-Man.
Not personally of course. Very few people knew the web-spinning freak as an individual as far as he could tell, and if they did, he was left to wonder why they hadn't turned his identity in so the criminal could be arrested like the anarchist he was. Oh sure, he had a tendency to 'save' the city from the other freaks that plagued it, but not only had those freaks been absent until the spider came along, but they at least didn't hide their criminal intent. Spider-Man was supposedly a hero, but he knew him for the masked criminal that he was.
Which was why he was here at a branch at USZ. And why he was talking to a perky staff member that had the courtesy not to cover up her face with a mask.
"So..." she began. "You started an account with us three months ago? And you're already cashing in?"
"Trust me, I'd prefer not to..." Joseph said. "But...well, let's just say my store has a tendency to be in the line of fire."
She laughed. Charming in some circumstances, not in these. Not when his store had been destroyed twice in the same year. The first was when the freak had been engaged in some street brawl with the criminal called Rhino, the two no doubt staging the whole thing to divert police from a robbery or something. Rhino had gone down, Spider-Man had been lauded as a hero, and Joseph had been left without a business. And after emptying his bank account to cover the damages, he'd decided enough was enough. USZ was advertising a super villain insurance policy, and he was determined to take advantage of it.
And just in time too...
"Well sir..." the staff member said eventually. "You are indeed covered by our policy. Under the Super Villain Fund, any damage incurred in a fight between Spider-Man and a villain will be covered by USZ."
"Thank goodness," Joseph murmured. "Now all I need to do is wait for Spider-Man to be hauled into jail like the criminal he is."
Somewhere in the lines behind him, a child started crying. He couldn't imagine why.
"Um...yes," said the desk help, looking confused for some reason. "Now, if you could just help us identify which super villain was involved..."
"What?" Joseph exclaimed. "You expect me to-..."
"Sir, it's for our records, that's all," she explained hastily.
Joseph snorted. "All the freaks look the same to me. Not as bad as those mutant weirdos, but..."
"Well...we may be able to help," the staff member said, looking briefly offended at the term "mutant weirdos" for some reason. She turned her computer to the side so that Joseph could see it. "We have a number of New York super villains on slide sir. If they can help you identify the perpetrator, it might help."
Joseph glanced at the slides, ranging from a green goblin on a flying surfboard to a yellow goblin on a flying surfboard. Freaks, the lot of them. But he didn't need any help. He knew which freak was to blame.
"I know who it was..." he murmured. "It was that black Spider-Man thing. The...alien looking one. The...the..."
"Venom?" asked the girl.
"Yeah...whatever the arsehole's name was."
"Mummy, what's an arsehole?" asked a brat behind him.
"Venom..." the desk help murmured. "I...sir, I'm afraid we can't cover you."
Joseph opened his mouth...closed it...opened it...closed it...
"Mummy, what's a-..."
"This...this is a joke..." he whispered. "I...I'm covered, aren't I? Covered for damage incurred from super villains."
"Yes sir...you are. But read the fine print." The desk jockey slid a form over to him. "You're covered against super villains. Bad guys."
"Yeah? So what about-..."
"But Venom's an anti-hero, Mister Lampson. He isn't covered."
The idea for this stemmed from watching episodes of Spectacular Spider-Man, where a viewer jokingly wondered whether New York has an insurance policy for all the damage inflicted in Spidey's battles with his foes. Don't know the answer to that question...but it did kind of compel me to go a step further.