Spider-Man & The Mighty Thor
The Incredible Hulk
'Cometh the Hulk, Cometh the Storm'
by Chris Smillie
1. A Web of Deceit
"Great timing, Parker!"
Through the driving early morning rain, a certain red-and-blue webbed figure was swinging his way above the heavy traffic of Miami.
"I manage to persuade Jolly Jonah Jameson to give me a photo assignment in 'sunny' Florida --", thought Spider-Man, "-- and it pours down! Just my rotten luck!"
Frustrated Spider-Man may be, however, in his guise of Peter Parker, he was not what you might call honest in his means of getting to Florida. Parker, a New York doctoral student, was determined to attend the Physics Fair in the sunshine state of Florida. Just one problem. Money.
Yet again, Parker was broke. The meagre wage that the Daily Bugle gave Peter was barely enough to let both him and his elderly Aunt May survive. So, how then could he wheedle his way into funding for the Physics Fair?
Parker came up with an idea. Not exactly the most truthful, nor the easiest to carry off – sweet-talk Jameson into giving his a free trip!!
"Spider-Man you say?" Jameson's cigar was as agitated as his mood. "In Florida?!
JJJ hated the webbed super-hero with every fibre of his being. He believed Spider-Man to be a menace, certainly. Possibly even a murderer. However, a large part of his hatred came from resentment. Super-heroes, felt Jameson, took the publicity away from ordinary people. The everyday man in the street was no longer being recognised for his great feats. Instead, costumed clowns with the unmistakable advantage of super-powers were given all the credit that should have been reserved for detectives, firemen and astronauts – especially one astronaut John Jameson, Jonah's son.
"Yes, Mr Jameson." Beads of sweat were pouring down Peter Parker as he spun his web of lies. "My sources say Spider-Man wants to disrupt the Florida Physics Fair. He hates to see ordinary students make good."
Parker detested making his alter-ego even more of a target for JJJ's bile but, he surmised, needs must! "If I can get there tomorrow, maybe I'll get some good pics for the Bugle?"
Jolly Jonah had long since given up trying to find out just how Parker was able to get such good photographs of Spider-Man. He reasoned they must somehow be in collusion. The last thing Jameson suspected, though, was that Parker and Spider-Man were one and the same.
"Tomorrow?" shouted Jonah. "Correction Parker. I want you there yesterday!"
* * *
So, there he was. His lie worked perfectly. One big problem though. The final words of Jameson were still ringing in Parker's ears,
"And don't come back without any photos!!!"
Photos? Of what? Obviously, Peter had no interest in actually disrupting the Fair. Florida had enough petty crime but those would not be of interest to the Daily Bugle. Super-villains were few and far between. Besides which, Parker wasn't too interested in meeting one!
So what else could go wrong? How about the weather?! It was not just that the rain was heavy. The storm had disrupted Peter's bus to the Fair, hence, he had to dig out his Spidey threads and head to the University via web-power.
Spidey was making good progress. A short way from the Fair, Web-Head rested upon a nearby wall, looking for a handy hideaway to change his clothes.
"Wha--?" exclaimed a surprised wall-crawler. "Thunder in Florida at 9 am?"
Above the rumble of the storm and the chattering of the rain on the hard ground below, Spidey could hear screams from nearby.
"Probably stranded by the storm," thought Spider-Man. "Well, there's only one superhero in town --" reasoned the webbed wonder as he readied a web-line, waiting to swing his way across to the commotion, "and he's --"
"-- your friendly neighbourhood SPIDER-MAN!!!"