fortune’s fool: peter parker II
peter parker x reader
A/N: multi-part fic based off of a twitter post which I won’t link until the end so as not to spoil anything :-) Each part can be read individually or as a series!
Warnings: cursing, mentions of sex, mentions of drinking, mentions of death
summary: Two Empire State University students fated to meet
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21 year old Peter, 19 year old reader
She woke with her head buried in stark white sheets, a rhythmic thrumming pounding against the base of her skull as she tried to gather her thoughts. She was definitely not in her own room, but the scent that surrounded her cocooned body was a familiar one, and the easy, measured breaths that she could hear from beyond her wall of pillows was a symphony she’d learned by heart.
With a groan, she turned on her side and pushed away the pile of blankets that separated herself from her best friend’s body. His bare chest rose and fell, faint puffs of air escaping his slightly-opened mouth every so often. Soft curls fell across his peaceful face that lay smooth and unwrinkled as he slept.
This wasn’t the first time that she’d woken up in the same bed as Peter Parker. It was, however, the first time she’d found herself naked and twisted in his sheets. She couldn’t say that she was surprised. They’d been the closest of friends for over a year now, and they both knew that some sort of consummation of their friendship was inevitable.
It didn’t worry her. She knew that what had happened wasn’t serious, and therefore, that nothing about their relationship would change. She knew that Peter knew that, too.
That’s why it happened, she supposed. Because they both knew it wouldn’t ruin anything. It was bound to happen some day, anyway. Instead of worrying, she was content to lay in the peaceful silence until Peter woke up and they’d have to talk.
She breathed in the cool morning air that blew through the slightly opened window and caused the sheer white curtains to flutter. The rest of Manhattan was surely awake by now, evidenced by the honking of horns and shouting from street corners. This was what she loved most about Peter’s apartment. The building was squished between another apartment complex and a multi-level shopping center, which was all smack in the middle of the bustling city, one that she’d come to love, perhaps even more than her own home of Long Island.
His own space, however, was a simplistic haven that was just so him that she found herself spending more time at his place than her own home.
“Just move in already,” is what he’d said once on a warm morning after she’d slept over for the fourth night in a row.
“No, you’d get sick of me!” she’d laughed. He disagreed, but they never spoke about it again. Still, she continued to spend days on end flitting between his kitchen and his sofa and his bedroom, working on her own things, simply coexisting with Peter and not depending too much on his presence to get her own stuff done.
Most often, she could be found sitting on his bed with her textbooks and notes spread around her, all marked in her own code of colored highlighters as she studied or worked on homework while Peter sat at his desk, focused intently on his own work and typing away madly on his laptop, stopping only to remind her to stretch or drink some water or grab a snack. That was just Peter, though; the caring guy she’d met over a year ago who had saved her from days of hauling boxes and who still cared more than anybody else and always thought of her needs before his own.
She loved him, she guessed, but in the purest of ways. She couldn’t stand to lose him, and he felt the same way, because they both knew that the ease of their relationship was not a common thing. They never actively sought anything more from one another, believing that if something was meant to happen, it would happen. For now, they both coveted the freedom they had to see other people, and the knowledge that they still had the other to come back to and laugh about awkward dates and terrible hookups with.
“It’s easier this way,” she’d said. “I don’t want to start anything if I can’t commit my whole being to you.”
“I agree,” was his reply. ‘We both love this whole ‘young college student’ phase too much for us to really be able to give everything to one another like we deserve. Besides, as long as I’ve got you as my best friend, I couldn’t really ask for more.”
Then they’d smiled, Peter with that bright, dazzling thing that you could see from miles away, and her with something soft and shared with him, like a secret she seemed to reserve only for Peter, and then they turned back to their work which had been abandoned only minutes ago.
Sighing softly, she let her eyes trace over Peter’s still-sleeping figure. She wished, sometimes, that they’d met ten years later, when she knew who she was and what she wanted, and she’d be able to love him fully like he deserved. She still wasn’t expecting more from him, but she think it might have been better, knowing their intentions from the beginning.
She didn’t know, though, if he’d be her same Peter. His “after school hobby”, as he’d called it, wasn’t easy on him. She’d seen how much it changed him, even within the short year that they’d known each other. He was more quiet, more self aware. He’d seen horrors and faced death, and there was no one who really understood it, that he was still a kid that had to carry the weight of the world on his shoulders.
She did her best to listen when he needed her to, when days were dark and he just needed to get things off his chest. He’d told her about Liz and the Vulture and the homecoming night that happened so long ago that changed him forever. He told her about the innocent people that he could’ve, would’ve, should’ve saved, but let their lives slip through his fingers, and how each one weighed heavily on him, every one of them a cold, unbeating heart that couldn’t speak the words of condemnation that he knew they should. He told her about his visits to the graveyards around his city where he stood before their graves and cried tears that he didn’t deserve to cry and apologized profusely, knowing that his words would do nothing to bring them back.
And she would listen. She would let him cry onto her shoulder while she ran soothing fingers through tangled, sweat soaked curls, easing that beautiful mind in its state of turmoil. And then he would push his face deep into her chest while she cradled his head and pressed soft kisses to his hairline while his body racked with sobs.
Who would he be without her? He couldn’t be like this with Ned, couldn’t confide in him like he did with her. MJ would tell him to take his feelings out on the punching bag that hung in the back room of his apartment. He couldn’t even begin to talk to May about it in fear of worrying her half to death. She knew that. She knew everything. And so she became his rock, his unmovable force that he knew would always, always be there for him.
If she wasn’t though? Who would he confide in? Who would ease his pain and help him carry his burden? If it had been ten years later, who knew that he’d even be alive? That there was even a possibility of them meeting at all?
He’d certainly be different. Not the same shining light that she’d come to know so well. Knowing him, he’d let him get lost in his selflessness, his need to be a hero, and push himself further and further into this other version of himself. She didn’t ever want to meet this version of Peter, and so she fought to keep him Peter and not just Spider-Man.
So far, she thinks she’s doing alright. He’s still paranoid at times, always checking over his shoulder, wrapping a protective arm around her waist when they’re out late, but he’s also trying, she knows. He visits Aunt May every weekend, takes a trip to Uncle Ben’s grave once a month, hangs out with his friends regularly. She thinks he’s doing great, all things considered.
Peter began to stir on his side of the bed, a soft groan emitting from beneath the protection of the covers. He rolled over to face her, opening one eye slowly and allowing himself to adjust to the bright light that was now streaming through the window.
“Whatimezit?” he mumbled, pushing his head up to eye her unclothed body. “Wha’d we do last night?”
“We had sex,” she spoke bluntly, giving him a small shrug. “We can talk about it, if you want.”
“Rather not, actually,” he groaned, pushing his head back into his pillow. “How much did I drink?”
“Well, you took three tequila shots straight out of the gate then shotgunned a beer and I kind of lost count after your fifth mixed drink, so I’d say you were sufficiently smashed by the end of the night. Not that I was any better, mind you,” she recalled, stomach churning at the thought of that last beer.
“I feel like absolute shit,” Peter grumbled, face muffled by the fabric of the pillowcase.
“You look it,” she joked, scooting over so they were shoulder to shoulder, pressed together like sardines.
“Hey, not nice,” he pouted, turning his neck so their faces were mere inches away from each other. He smiled at her, breathing in as he spoke again. “Are you sure you’re okay with this?”
“Of course,” she responded. “We’ve talked about this before. As long as none of our feelings have changed, I think that we can both move past this.”
“Good. Now who’s making breakfast? Because I really don’t wanna get up right now, but if I don’t have something drenched in grease and hopefully some sort of cheese, my stomach will start eating itself,” Peter remarked, kicking her leg lightly under the sheets.
“Not me! I made you dinner before we left last night,” she answered, returning his kick.
“Let’s just order something in and that way we can stay in bed until it arrives,” he suggested.
“Fine, but you’re paying,” she insisted, and he agreed, allowing the peaceful silence to fall upon them again.
“I’m glad you’re my best friend,” he remarked after the silence settled, pulling her body closer to his with one hand.
“Don’t let Ned hear you say that,” she cautioned teasingly. She knew that Peter’s relationship with Ned was different than the one they had, but was still just as strong, and probably even stronger considering their history. She didn’t mind sharing his attention. She loved Ned just as much as Peter, and she was glad that he still had a close friend from home that always had his back no matter what.
“Ned knows it’s true. He doesn’t mind, I think. Ever since he and MJ picked up those jobs at the Rec Center, they’ve been closer than ever. Now they both gang up on me rather than just MJ,” Peter whined.
“To be fair, though, you deserve it more often than not,” she joked, nudging his shoulder.
“That’s probably true,” he sighed. “Anyway, I meant it. You’re the best person I know. Thank you,” he stated, reaching down to squeeze her hand.
“Thank you,” she responded. “You’ve done so much for me Peter. I’m so lucky to have you.” She smiled and squeezed his hand back, her grin only growing when he leaned over to press a kiss against her forehead.
They were interrupted by a knock on the door.
“One of us should really put some clothes on before we freak out this delivery guy,” Peter mused quietly, not moving at all.
“Yes, one of us should definitely put clothes on and get the food right now,” she looked at him pointedly.
“Fine,” he grumbled, sliding out of bed and pulling a pair of flannel pants on while she watched him in amusement, following his movements until he was out the door. Yes, she certainly was lucky to have Peter in her life.
Tagged: @multi-parker @cutie1365 @cersei-lannister @oswald-1998 @kawaiianime03 @lionfart @mrsdoradominguez-barnes @nonewmessage @co0kies08 @dec-snowy @sunshine-little-miss @cubedtriangle @triggerfingerfunction @dailygubler