Chapter 24

A few days past and Peter decided to pay the Connor family a visit. After ringing the doorbell, the door opened up and standing there was Martha. "Peter! This is a pleasant surprise! Come on in."

Peter nodded as he followed her into the house and into the living room. Standing up from the couch was Dr. Curt Connors. "Peter! It's good to see you again."

"I heard you were seriously hurt in an accident a few days ago on top of the injuries you sustained earlier."

"Yea, it has been a rough week. I'm doing well. The wounds will take some time to heal," Peter admitted. Fortunately, most of his wounds and bandages were covered by his clothes. He did have a few bruises across the face. He had to come up with a lie to explain to Aunt May and friends to explain the server wounds that he had acquired in his fight with the Lizard. He had been lucky that his internal injuries was not as serious as it could have been. "I came to see how you were doing, Dr. Connors."

"I'm doing well thanks to Spider-man. From what I can tell, the formula that he injected into the Lizard did half of the job. It controlled the mindless predator frame of mind. It wasn't until the coldness of the freezer when the formula took full effect. Unfortunately, I suspect that some chemical got mixed into my formula, so the effects of the formula that was injected into me is temporary." Dr. Connors showed Peter his left arm to show him the device wrapped around the arm. "This device here warns me when my metabolism is threatening to change. When this goes off, I inject an altered formula based on the one Dr. Windstrom created which fights the transformation. This should work until I come up with a formula that will cure me permanently."

"Well, I hope you are successful, Dr. Connors," Peter replied. "I wish I could stay, but I am kind of busy."

"Well take it easy, Peter Parker. You have been seriously hurt. You shouldn't be pushing yourself so hard. Take it easy, will you?"

"I will," Peter replied.

Mary Jane entered her apartment, closing the door behind her. She had not seen Peter since the afternoon at the hospital. She had to come up with a lie to tell Aunt May to explain his absence, but that was the last time she saw anyone remotely close to Peter. She had been furious about Peter throwing his life away to stop the Lizard, but she knew from the news that Peter had stopped the Lizard once and for all. She knew he was hurt, but to what extent she did not know. Her anger towards him had diminished a little but she would not go see him; he would have to come to her. His not coming to see her these past few days had begun to make her bitter towards Peter.

Mary Jane walked into the living room where a bouquet of flowers dropped in front of her, dangling from a web line. Mary Jane kept a firm face as she detached the flowers from the web line. Spider-man slide down a web line, hanging upside-down in front of Mary Jane. "Here are some flowers for a lovely lady, Miss. Watson."

Mary Jane looked at the flowers and frowned. "These are beautiful, but I already have a boyfriend who owes me an explanation on why he hasn't come to see me in a few days."

"Really?" Peter replied. "That gentlemen better know how lucky he is to have a girl like you."

"He better, but he's got some explaining to do," Mary Jane replied, folding her arms across her chest.

"Well, I'm sure he has a good explanation. Maybe he was seriously hurt in a fight and was hospitalized. Maybe he had the doctor keep this a secret so not to scare you about how serious of a condition he was in and wanted to see you the moment he came out of the hospital." Mary Jane eyed Spider-man suspiciously. "Maybe your boyfriend will be a little jealous by this." He used a web line to dangle a small black box in front of her, and her attitude took a 180 degree turn.

She gasped as she grabbed the box and opened it to see a beautiful diamond engagement ring. She was too joyful to role play any longer. Peter knew it and he took off his mask for her. "Mary Jane, will you marry me?"

Tears of joy ran down the sides of her face as she held his head between her hands. "Yes!"

Mary Jane kissed him passionately in the same way she did the first time in that alley a few years ago: with Peter hanging upside down hanging on a web line. The kiss lasted for a minute before Mary Jane stepped back as reality hit her. "Peter, we can't do this right now. You have school, hopefully a new job soon, and your life as Spider-man. How can you handle a marriage right now?"

"First of all, I plan to go get my job back at the Daily Bugle. Then, I am going to quit school. It's time I realize that my destiny is in being Spider-man, not the scientist that I've wanted for most of my life. The job at the Bugle will tie in perfectly with my life as Spider-man. From now on, I am going to be there for you and Aunt May." Mary Jane smiled as she stepped forward and resumed her kiss.

Eddie Brock was in a meeting with J. Jonah Jameson until the door of Jameson's office shot open violently and in marched Peter with a file in his hands and two police officers following behind him. J. Jonah Jameson shot up onto his feet in anger. "What is the meaning of this? What the hell are you doing here Parker? I fired you!"

"Mr. Jameson, I think you need to see this," He handed the file to him.

"What are you trying to do Parker?" Brock grinned. "Are you trying to get your job back? Do you really think your photos will help you get your job back?"

"That folder does not contain photos but evidence that you are responsible for many of the criminal acts that had taken place recently in New York. You started that fire at the theater that endangered my girl friend. You hired men to commit crimes to try to call out Spider-man so you could steal my job. It was you who are responsible for endangering the lives of countless people. Those papers came from the house of one of the men you hired, and he has testified to the police that you paid him to do those things. The police records show that a few times that you had paid that man's bail."

Eddie Brock began to breath heavily with anger. "It's a lie! All of it! You are trying to set me up, and it won't work."

J. Jonah Jameson looked through the fire then up at Peter and then at Eddie. "Of all the years of journalism, I have never seen anyone sink so low to get a story than this, Brock! Even I wouldn't sink as low as to endanger the lives of the people of New York. You have tarnished the reputation of this paper and that is inexcusable! You are a poor excuse of a photographer. You're fired!"

"But sir," Eddie pleaded, the tone of his voice had turned to frantic.

"Eddie Brock, you are under arrest for financially abetting in criminal activities," the two police officers approached Eddie and grabbed him and began to cuff his wrists behind his back.

Eddie screamed as he fought with the two officers to get to Peter. "I'll kill you for this Peter Parker! I will rip you to shreds! I will serve your brain upon a silver platter and I will eat it!" He roared almost as if he had become demon possessed.

"Well, officers, what are you waiting for? Remove this freak from my office!"

The two officers forced Brock out of the office, fighting all the way wanting desperately to get his hands on Peter. They watched through the glass window everyone standing and watching the commotion as the police officers dragged Eddie Brock out of the office area. J. Jonah Jameson straightened his collar and sat down, glancing up at Peter. "Well, what are you waiting for, Parker? Go bring me some front page photographs!"

"Are you offering me my job back again, sir?" Peter said, looking firmly at J. Jonah Jameson.

J. Jonah Jameson raised his upper lip. "Do you want me to spell it out for you? Now go!"

"Well, sir," Peter said glancing down at his feet for a second. "It just happens that I was offered a job by the New York Times. They offered me three grand more a year than I was making here. How can I refuse a job like that?"

J. Jonah Jameson was furious, but he held his anger in check. "You have a lot of nerve, kid. Fine, I'll give you four grand more a year, now go get me some pictures!"

"Thank you, sir." Peter turned around and walked out of his office with a grin on his face.

"Even now, over two years later from the time I was bitten by that spider, I am only beginning to get my life in order. I now know that I have been given a calling; a calling I can not escape.

With great power comes great responsibility. Those words will continue to echo in my mind. I have accepted the responsibility that has been placed upon my shoulders and now I can live life happier than I ever have: a life as a future husband of a Mary Jane Parker and as New York's greatest hero, the spectacular Spider-man."