Wash Away (The Mess I’ve Made)
A/N: A second part to this story was requested, but this works perfectly well as a standalone story, too!! I’m so hyped to be sharing this with you, and I think it’s pretty clear that no sequels will be possible. That being said, please feel free to scream at me in my inbox about what you thought and pelt me with requests about the bae, Peter Parker/Tom Holland. This was surprisingly fun to write, and I hope that you enjoy it!!
A frantic scream rips its way out of your throat. The Vulture’s hold around your waist is bruisingly tight, but you don’t dare to ask him to loosen his grip. If he takes that statement a little too literally, you might end up in a puddle on the pavement below.
“Let (Y/n) go!” Peter yells, swinging after The Vulture in hot pursuit. “This is between you and me, right?”
“It stopped being between us the moment she decided to spare your miserable life!”
Breathing in quick little gasps, your eyes too round and large in a pale face, your frightened gaze meets Peter’s. Your hand is outstretched, uselessly trying to latch onto a boy who’s nowhere near enough for you to grab hold of. He’s shooting out strings of webs, probably hoping to catch you around the waist and tug you out of The Vulture’s grip and over to him, but the two of you are swooping away on metal wings, too fast for Peter to catch up with.
You decide to lend Peter a hand.
He promised to protect you.
And in all the years that you’ve known him, Peter has never broken a promise.
The sight of Peter reminds you that you’re smarter and braver than this. You clamp your canines onto the fleshy part of The Vulture’s arm, which snaps back. His curses echo around you as you elbow yourself free. Before you can scream, before you even have time to regret your decision, you’re free-falling, hair whipping into your face, limbs flailing about ungracefully, Peter’s name being screamed from your lips.
A stream of webbing latches onto your waist; Peter yanks on the other end of the web, and you’re pulled up into his arms, safe and warm and secure in his tight embrace. Peter catches you with a grunt, and the two of you collapse onto a rooftop in a tangled heap, his back and head absorbing the brunt of the impact. You lie on the floor for what seems to be an eternity, trying to remember how to breathe, trying to distinguish the various aches and pains in your limbs. Peter’s moan pours out the pain around you, but he is strong and full of life.
Peter wastes no time in helping you stand, in checking you over for injuries. “Are you okay? Did he hurt you?”
The growing silence, coupled with your lack of a response, must frighten Peter. His voice is practically a growl as he demands, “What did he do?”
You shake your head; try to find your voice. You’re shaking so badly that you can’t even stand on your own. “I - I’m scared.”
“It’ll be okay, (Y/n).” Peter promises fiercely, hugging you close to his chest. “I’ll take care of this, and then we’ll go home. Okay?”
Your chest convulses on a sob. It’s all you can do not to clutch Peter close to you and not let him go. As it is, you manage a choked, “This is all my fault. I’m so sorry.”
You don’t regret sparing Peter’s life, but every fibre of your being knows that The Vulture is furious at you for turning on him to help Peter. And if he had one target before, you’re sure that you’ve now been bumped up as The Vulture’s number one enemy.
Previous relationship as father and daughter be damned.
“It is not your fault.” Peter says, inspecting your teary face. With infinite gentleness, he wipes away a tear that slips down the curve of a pale cheek. “It’s one thousand percent not your fault.”
A watery laugh bubbles out of you. You lean into his touch. “You can’t have one thousand percent.”
“Yes, you can!” Peter retorts childishly, and you’re snorting snotty bubbles, which makes the two of you laugh even harder.
You hear the tell-tale whirr of an engine approaching. The shift in the mood is almost instantaneous; Peter grabs your hand and practically drags you behind the protective cover of a water tank. You hunker down behind it. It’s not much, not when The Vulture has lasers of mass destruction, but at least Peter isn’t asking you to run.
“I love you, (Y/n),” Peter says, brushing his lips over your hair, over your forehead. “I’ll come back soon, okay?”
He’s gone before you can reply; you can only hope Peter knows that you love him too. All around you, like a chorus of birds rising up from the ground at the same time, comes the other screams of fear, crowding one another on the streets down below. Fear for him hacks at your heart, even though he’s more than capable of defending himself. But he’s only gone up against petty thieves and thugs. This was The Vulture. You know what he’s capable of, you’ve seen what he can do –
There’s an agonized scream. Before you’re even aware of what’s happening, the Vulture’s appeared in front of you. You’re scrambling backwards now, away from your shelter, away from him, but a crushing blow strikes your chest, and you fly backwards, a ragdoll in the air.
There’s a furious high whine and someone – It’s Peter, it has to be Peter – screams your name, screams it out like a prayer. A feeling of heat, starting in your chest then spreading outwards to your fingers and toes, and the sensation of being lifted, thrown, by a giant’s hand; the ground beneath your feet is revolving, turning upside down and sideways, but then you can’t feel solid ground beneath your feet anymore, and you’re falling, falling, falling.
Peter’s launched himself after you, you can see him trying to grab onto you, your hand, the back of your shirt, anything really, but The Vulture slams into him, and they crash into the side of a building, sending shards of glass flying everywhere. Peter’s scream sounds positively frantic now.
They say that before you die, your life flashes before your eyes, but that’s not how it happens for you.
You see the happier times, filled with love and laughter and light, with people you loved and who loved you in return. You and Michelle, watching The Fault in Our Stars and crying when Augustus died, and how she’d sworn you to secrecy. Ned, trying on Peter’s Spiderman outfit and how you’d laughed yourself into an early grave at the sight of spandex and a ratty hoodie. The time you and Liz had gone shopping, and she’d bought a ‘best friends forever’ necklace in the shape of a heart, and had given you half of it.
And your first kiss with Peter, slow and sweet and hesitant, when you had felt so happy and bright and free, wishing that this moment could last forever because there was no way that this happiness would last.
Floating images and memories, moving in and out. A bright red and blue suit, a hand outstretched, the voice of someone who loves you saying (Y/n), (Y/n), (Y/n), making it sound like the most beautiful song. And Peter’s face, pale and beautiful, warm brown eyes and a smile that had been the centre of your world.
“Peter, I –”