Volume One: Web of Fate
By: Jeanie and Mark Parker
Ghostwritten By: June Gilbert
I am Mary Jane Watson-Parker, and I'm here to tell you a story of my kids, Mark and Jeanie. And it's quite amazing, let me tell you. I'm very proud of them, but aren't most mothers?
Envision a sunny summer day, my family visiting Peter's Aunt May and my Aunt Anna. We were spending the night at May's home, letting the twins get to know their grand-aunts. Aunt Anna was a little stiff with Jeanie, because of her excitable personality, Jeanie ended up a little hyper. Aunt Anna did better with Mark, who was usually properly "reserved" in adults' presence.
Aunt May adored both of them, envying Jeanie's youthful energy and admiring Mark's cool headedness. Well, that was May: always loving and supportive. Even when she discovered Peter's secret identity as Spider Man, she still loved him enough to try to break through the barrier of a life of Peter lying (or fudging the truth, however you look at it) to her. I was very glad that we now had each other to sympathize with when Peter went off on dangerous missions.
Of course, I also had the kids to keep an eye on.
Peter was playing Candyland with six year old Jeanie and Aunt May on the porch. As I remember, Peter lost nine times, May won three times and Jeanie won six times. Jeanie was very good at it, having beaten her father several times before. May was very excited that she won at all, it was very sweet. Me, Mark and Aunt Anna were just watching, cheering on our favorites to win and sometimes switching out with the losers.
We switched from the porch to the living room when the day drew to a close. Mark was dozing, Aunt Anna had excused herself to head home and Peter looked rather sleepy himself. He probably had a late night last night, I reflected.
Jeanie, however, was still active. She raced up and down the stairs, and tickled her brother into chasing after her. Sigh…
May excused herself to take her medication. Peter was dozing on one of the chairs. I nuzzled him lightly, smiling at his sleepy start.
"Late night taking photos of yourself, Tiger?"
"Um… How'd you guess?" Peter chuckled sheepishly, smiling and kissing me in return.
"Women's intuition, I suppose," I murmured softly, smooching his lips once more, "Not in front of the kids, Tiger-ooohh…"
Anyway, Jeanie put a stop to that little situation by speeding in and demanding a bedtime story. Peter and I told both a very sleepy Mark and an attentively listening Jeanie one of their favorite tales about (whom else?) Spider Man. When they were finally asleep, we retired to the room May kept for us.
Later in the night, I heard noises. When I poked my head out, I saw a flash of long red hair. Jeanie was dashing away, into May's room. I ran swiftly after her, trying to figure out where she was going.
I froze when I saw a man dressed in black backing out the door to May's room. He held a small but vicious looking handgun. I spotted Jeanie hiding fearfully in a corner of the hallway. And then he spotted me.
I froze silently. We stood like this for a while. And then, I heard a furious shriek. A small ball of red hair and angry hazel eyes leapt in front of me. The burglar yelled, and almost fired. There was a spray of green acid, and then the burglar was screaming. Mark, who came out of nowhere, leapt onto the burglar and what I saw I nearly didn't believe afterward.
A spray of webbing, much like Peter's, burst from Mark's fingertips, encasing the man in a cocoon of webbing. Immediately afterward, both children passed out.
"PETER! PETER, the kids are in trouble! Help!" I cried.
Peter raced up to our floor, wildly wielding a crow bar, I snapped, "No genius, they took care of the burglar, now they're passed out. What is wrong with them, Peter?"
"I…I don't know, MJ, they seem fine," my husband murmured quizzically, checking them out, "Mind telling me exactly what happened?"
Irritably, I related the tale. He simply looked confused. Jeanie opened her eyes first.
"Honey! Are you okay?" Peter cried anxiously.
"Mm-hm. Daddy, did we make the mean bur-gluer go bye- bye? "Jeanie asked sleepily.
"Yawn. Good. Now can I an' Mark go bed now?"
"Yes. Yes, of course, little one," Peter murmured.
Jeanie reached her hands up, and Peter picked her up. She put her thumb into her mouth as I reflected she's going to have him wrapped around her little finger, especially when she's older.
He looked at me as I picked up Mark.
I said, "Oh, stop giving me that look, Tiger. They're okay."
Tonight, my children have discovered their inheritance.
It would be ten full years before they truly claimed it, however.