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Another Strand In The Great Web – Episode Thirty-Six Superior Spider-Man Part One Ends of the Earth

Midtown Elementary School, early afternoon

"He's coming," April said after glancing up at the clock. She along with her sister stood at the front of the classroom. All eyes were upon them.

"You have ten more minutes girls then we'll have to move on." Their not at all pleased science teacher who was handling the show and tell for their regular said after checking her wristwatch.

Five more uneventful minutes ticked by while their teacher tried in vain to keep forty some odd first graders under control. Sensing things were about to go south Mayday tightly grasped her sister's hand something she often did when she felt nervous. Regardless of her promise to the twins their teacher was about to dismiss the class early when a disheveled Peter entered the classroom. In Peter's hand, he held a briefcase and a large bag which bore a Spidey Inc logo.

"Sorry, I'm late. Traffic was intense," Peter said smoothing out his ruffled hair with his hand.

"This is our dad," April said letting go of Mayday's hand.

"Papa runs Spidey Inc. That's his job." Mayday chimed in.

"Ah yes, tell us about what you do Mr. Parker and tell us quickly." The teacher said tapping her wristwatch.

Peter took the hint and launched into a quick explanation of his job. Mid-way through his speech, however, the classroom door opened and in came Spider-Man! The children erupted into cheers.

"Hello, children I was in the neighborhood and thought I'd swing by," Spider-Man said. "I have a few minutes to answer questions if that is okay with your teacher?"

"By all means Spider-Man please do." The teacher said smiling time limits suddenly forgotten.

Everyone eagerly raised their hands except for Normie Osborn who instead folded his arms over his chest. "The young man in the X-Files shirt," Spider-Man said calling on West Westin.

"I'm a huge fan Spider-Man." Wes gushed.

"Thanks, kid," Spider-Man said. "With Old Flattop as mayor, I need all the fans I can get." Everyone laughed at his joke.

"What is the tensile strength of your webbing?" Wes asked.

"An excellent question X-Files Fan. I'm going to call you X-File from now on, okay? Give me a moment to confer with my tech guy." Spider-Man said briefly putting up one finger. "1000 UTS," Spider-Man said after Peter whispered the answers in his ear.

"Wow, that's higher than steel," Wes said.

"And a lot springier," Spider-Man said. Everyone again laughed. "Which is why not many beings can break free of my webs until they start to dissolve."

"The young lady in the pink shirt," Spider-Man said pointing at Heather Noble next.

"Is Spinneret your girlfriend?" Heather asked.

"Heck yeah," Spider-Man said.

"Where is she?" Heather asked.

"Out on patrol," Spider-Man said. "We'll meet up later for an evening skyscraper supper."

"How romantic," Heather sighed.

"Aren't you a little young for romance, there pinky?" Spider-Man said everyone laughed other than Heather who blushed.

Following a flurry or further questions, Spider-Man spotted Normie. "Hey, kid in the suit you've sat on your hands through my entire visit. Do you have a question?" Spider-Man said. Normie remained silent. "C'mon ask me a tough one."

"Do you ever feel bad about putting people in prison?" Normie asked with a scowl.

"I try really hard to only put bad people in prison. And yes sometimes." Spider-Man said after an extended period of uncomfortable silence during which Peter appeared to be especially uncomfortable. "It's been a blast kids, but duty calls, bye." Spider-Man waved to everyone before he left. Everyone applauded except again Normie who kept scowling at Spider-Man until the latter departed.

"I'll be taking my daughters home early," Peter said to the teacher after the bell rang.

"Of course Mr. Parker. Could you get me an autograph from the Web Warriors?" The teacher requested.

"No problem," Peter said. "What's your name?"

"Just have them make it out to Carolyn. And be sure Iron Spider signs he's my favorite. What a hottie." The teacher said with a dreamy expression.

"I'll make sure I tell him you said that," Peter said smiling. There was something oddly familiar about the brunette. Peter felt as if he had met her someplace before but he could not quite remember where or under what circumstances.

"Please do," The teacher said with a wink that unnerved Peter for some reason.

Peter and his daughters navigated there way outside after the girls said their goodbyes to their friends. They emerged outside into an unusually balmy spring day. Once in the parking Mayday and April got into Peter's black sedan. Although Peter did not usually drive a vehicle (being Spider-Man meant he could get around via alternative means) he was a fairly decent driver.

"Sorry I was late girls. Someone tried to hold up a restaurant on my way." Peter explained.

Peter noticed a text message from Miguel on his smartphone. Miguel had played the role of classroom Spider-Man saying. The text said he was headed home.

"Papa is momma okay?" Mayday asked fearfully from the back where she sat next to her sister.

"Your mother is fine," Peter said. It pained him that his children were already accustomed to worrying for the safety of their parents at such a young age.

"Then why are we going home early?" April asked.

"Because I want some time alone with my favorite young ladies in the whole wide world," Peter said.

"Dad you're acting kind of funny," April said.

"You aren't Doc Ock again, are you?" Mayday asked. "He was mean."

"And scary," April added.

"Don't worry girls, I'm me," Peter said. "I know he was mean to both of you. I'm sorry about that." Peter paused for a moment as he waited to pull out into traffic. He thought how best to phrase what he wanted to say. "How much did you girls hear of the conversation Doc Ock had with your mother about you guys?"

"You mean when he said we aren't your real daughters," April said.

Peter felt like a dagger had been plunged into his heart. "Yeah, that part," Peter said. "Doc Ock is a very bad person. You ignore anything he has to say."

"But it's true," April said.

"But it doesn't matter," Peter said.

"What do you mean, papa?" Mayday asked.

"Take for example the planet Jupiter. It may have a diamond core but that doesn't matter to anyone on Earth because it can't be reached." Peter said. "I don't care how you got here girls all I care about is that you are here. Being clones doesn't make you any less human beings or any less my daughters, and never let anyone tell you otherwise." Peter paused briefly. "Now, who wants some ice cream?"

"Me," Mayday said excitedly.

"Me too," April said with equal excitement.

"Okay then, next stop ice cream," Peter said turning the sedan onto the street.

Hidden Underground Lair of the former Dr. Octopus Brooklyn recycling center

Dr. Otto Octavius in his hybrid clone body (which combined his own DNA with that of Peter Parker) sat before a control panel in a high back black leather chair. He wore a variant of Spider-Man's familiar costume. This modified version replaced the colors blue and red with black and grey respectively plus it did not use the web pattern on the grey potion. Another difference between his outfit and that worn by Spider-Man were the glowing green lenses. The fingers of his black-gloved were steepled together as he closely watched a series of monitors. The hijacked satellites were deployed and had taken up their designated positions around Earth. It was only a matter of time now.

"We've prepared your equipment master. Is there anything else we can do for you master?" One member of the trio of Gwen Stacey clones asked approaching Otto. Otto decided only to revive three of the clones. He held the fourth in reserve just in case he should require it later.

Otto swiveled his chair around to face them. Each was clad in a Spider-Man type outfit of a different color green, yellow and orange with black spider symbols on their chests. None presently wore their masks. "You may relax, my dears," Otto said.

The clones turned to leave acting on an impulse Otto told the lead clone dressed in orange to remain behind which she did. Otto got out of his seat. He took a few steps towards her. "Get on your knees." He ordered.

"Yes master," The Gwen Stacey Clone said obeying his order.

Otto lowered his pants. "Show your master how much you appreciate him," Otto said.

"Yes master," She said obediently going to work.

Perhaps it was the hormones produced by his young virile body? Perhaps it was sheer boredom? Whatever the case Otto had discovered during the two weeks he plotted his debut as Superior Spider-Man he quite enjoyed the intimate company of his widows as he called them. Whenever a small part of him protested against his actions for being immoral he squashed it by thinking that they were just clones. They did not matter. They were not real people only tools to be used for his purposes and then discarded. So what if he "abused" them. If not for him they would still be in stasis. He had every right to use them as he saw fit.

"You've become rather proficient at this particular task, Number Three," Otto said following a long moan of pleasure after Number Three finished her task. "You're sisters will no doubt become envious if your proficiency continues to improve." Otto hiked up his pants.

"Thank you, master." Number Three said getting to her feet. She wiped off her mouth with the back of her gloved hand.

"Leave me," Otto said turning back to his monitors.

"Yes master," Number Three said. Turning on her heels she walked away.

A blinking green light on his control console indicated a message was incoming. Otto engaged the video and audio scramblers and answered the video chat summons. As excepted Sandman, Rhino, Shocker, the new female Beetle, and Black Ant who made up the "Fearsome Five", or as Otto thought of them the "Failure Five", appeared on one of his monitors.

"Everything is ready." Black Ant said. "We'll deliver our demands to the UN at 3:00 pm."

"Either they pay up or we fry the whole world," Sandman said with a grin.

"Excellent work gentlemen and lady. I'll rendezvous with you there. Soon we shall each be enriched beyond our wildest dreams." Otto said breaking the connection before any more could be said. "Rubes," He laughed.

UN Building, 3:20 pm

When the UN General Council failed to accept the frankly outrageous demands of a million pounds in gold and their mysterious benefactor did not show the Fearsome Five became enraged. They took the members of the chamber hostage. They threatened to start executing the dignitaries in addition to destroying the planet by increasing global temperatures dramatically unless they were given their gold. Their antics were broadcast live around the world this naturally drew the attention of many superheroes including the Web Warriors but before any could act a previously unknown superhero who called himself "Superior Spider-Man" somehow got inside.

"Either surrender peacefully or suffered my wrath." Superior Spider-Man threatened.

"Another spider, damn how many of you things are there?" Beetle said.

"You needn't concern yourself with those pale imitations villain." Superior Spide-Man said.

"Enough talk, let's squash him!" Rhino said.

"Good idea," Sandman said.

"A really good idea." Shocker said.

The three circled Superior Spider-Man who carefully positioned himself directly between them. When Rhino charged and Shocker & Sandman attacked Superior Spider-Man jumped aside. Shocker's sound wave blast dissipated much of Sandman's mass while Rhino knocked out Shocker by smashing him through a wall. Meanwhile, Sandman's remaining mass surged forward and stunned Rhino by getting his lungs.

"Amateurs," Superior Spider-Man said. he tossed two discs with green LEDs onto Black Ant and Beetle after he webbed up Rhino and Shocker along with the remains of Sandman.

"What are these suppose to do?" Black Ant asked in confusion.

"Short circuit your armor buffoons." Superior Spider-Man a split second later just that occurred. Superior Spider-Man stalked over to where Beetle and Black Ant lay. He picked up Black Ant by his collar and ripped off Black Ant's sparking helmet. "Play close attention. I'm only going to ask nicely once. Give me the satellite network command codes."

"Or?" Black Ant said defiantly.

Superior Spider-Man viciously elbowed Black Ant in his face breaking his nose. "Or I break more than your nose."

"Okay, okay, I'll give them to you." Black Ant said groaning in pain while blood poured down his face.

"Smart move your first of the day and most likely of your lifetime." Superior Spider-Man said.

When Black Ant gave him the codes Superior Spider-Man roughly dropped him on the floor. Superior Spider-Man then made a huge show of deactivating the satellites via a wrist-mounted device he just so happened to bring with him. He was helping the authorities cart away the Fearsome Five when other heroes arrived including the Web Warriors.

"Who are you?" Spider-Man asked staring in disbelief at his counterpart.

"I'm the better nay the superior spider, has-been!" Superior Spider-Man proclaimed loudly and smugly

Superior Spider-Man was soon surrounded by members of media who flooded the chamber. He was bathed in the light of countless flashbulbs as he gladly answered question after question. In the days to come, Superior Spider-Man was the toast of a grateful country and world. Everyone loved the latest and many contended the greatest superhero. Even Mayor Jameson said Superior Spider-Man was the type of Spider-Man New York City needed. Our original wall-crawler was all but forgotten by press and citizens alike. For their part, the Fearsome Five ranted from prison about their "boss" who they claimed orchestrated the entire operation not that anyone paid them much mind. Otto's plan had worked to perfection.

To Be Continued

Next – Superior Spider-Man will be in full swung as we enter the storyline proper. The worst (by far) is yet to come. You have been warned!

Author's Note One -

If you want to see a pic of my version of Otto's Superior Spider-Man costume visit my Deviant Art page (I have two such pics there). The link can be found on my profile page.

Author's Note Two -

Kudos to anyone who gets the Fearsome Five reference, hint it isn't a Marvel Comics reference but a Disney reference.