thank you — p.p.
summary → there has never been a moment where peter’s words haven’t failed him whilst basking in your presence, so why should they form coherent sentences now?
word count → 3.5k
author’s note → did you guys forget that i write because honestly me 2
Be it totally and completely out of the blue, you awaken one bright, blazing Tuesday morning in early November, brisk chill whipping through the air, and decide that later that night, when you see him somewhere that isn’t so public and academic like, you’re going to kiss Peter Benjamin Parker.
You’re not quite sure what brings it on, perhaps you should just leave it to the raging teenage hormones that the doctors and psychologists and guidance counselors blame everything on, but another part of you understands that this longing, yearning, to let yourself fall in love with your best friend is something far from foreign or new. This loving feels familiar to you, like coming back home after vacations far away and far too long, and it’s warmth in the way that burrowing under your blankets when the chill settles into your bones is. Boys like Peter demand to be adored, and they demand to be kissed as if never before. You’d be damned if you let such prime opportunities escape your grasp, or rather, your lips.
The hours in school glide by, which was, admittedly, utterly surprising. Typically, when you’re anticipating something later in the day, any hours before the event that is to transpire drag on as if you’re not impatient, as if you can wait all day without a complaint. But suddenly it’s last period, then two-thirty rolls around and you’re bounding over to your locker where your best friend awaits you, rocking slightly on the heels of his feet the way he has a tendency to do when he’s overexcited. This motion is arguably the most adorable thing you’ve ever seen. Then again, anything Peter does, the simplest actions that bear no real relevancy, is something that you mark down in your head as the cutest thing you’ve ever seen.
Peter glances around the halls, unable to see you through the mounds of students rushing hurriedly past him in order to relieve themselves of academia for the day as soon as possible. He pulls down the cuff of his sweater over his hands, then rethinks this and pushes them back up to his elbows. Blue looks nice on him. There are just these little things you tend to notice about him, silly things that only a person in love would pick up, and these tiny details, like the way the light catches in his eyes and the smiles he saves for certain people, make your heart bright and happy and whisper lovingly to him in a voice he can’t hear. The crowd disperses considerably enough, and you manage to fight your way through the remaining throng of people loitering in the hallway for no real reason- beyond frustrating, you think, but then Peter catches your eye and his already happy demeanor increases tenfold. With a beam that practically stretches out and reaches into your heart, seizing it carefully and determinedly, Peter ambles toward you, trying to appear more relaxed than he felt, and pushes himself into your personal space, as usual, by wrapping his arm around your shoulders and pulling you into him.
“You’re in a good mood,” you note, because at this point in your relationship there’s no need for formal greetings, as he parades you out of the building after letting go of you long enough to allow you to gear up for the cold sweeping through the borough outside the walls of Midtown. He casts a glance your way, sideways but still joyous, then shrugs, nonchalant. “You’re just so happy to see me, aren’t you, Pete?”
You’re half joking and not expecting much until Peter gives you a little look, head tilted to the side and his eyebrows furrowed slightly like he can’t believe the question is something you don’t know the answer to. He gives your shoulder a squeeze. “You should know the answer to that by now!” He exclaims, mock disappointment in the head shake he gives you. “The answer is yes. We see each other for, like, two seconds at a lunch all day and that’s it. I’m deprived. I miss you.”
“We’re together right now,” you laugh, nudging into his side.
“Not enough. I see Ned twenty-four-seven, I need both of my best friends with me all day every day if I’m gonna survive the next two and a half years of high school.” Your heart sort of twitches again, your palms feel warm. He has that influence over you. Love is such a strange thing sometimes, impossible to decipher or make sense of, and then other times it feels like the simplest emotion in the world, easy and steady and everything. You’ll never know what to make of it. “I just miss you, okay? Don’t make a big deal out of it,” he jokes, rubbing your shoulder for a second before letting his hand dangle across the edge of your shoulder. You reach up to intertwine your fingers with his, the way you have millions of times before in the same seemingly intimate way, pretending as if you don’t know the sweet grin that the gesture elicits from him, staring adoringly at the profile of your face like he couldn’t possibly get enough of the view.
“Aw,” you coo, pinching his cheek with the hand that wasn’t holding his. Peter flinches away, his eyes squeezing shut and his cheeks pink. “I missed you, too, Pete. So, where are we off to today? Can we go traipse around SoHo? We haven’t been in ages and oh! Look, I see the A train, it’s on every corner, let’s go.” Before he realizes it, he’s being dragged down toward the steps of the subway, his complaints about constantly getting lost there falling upon deaf ears.
Much more than a mere few hours later, Peter is shaking his head as you laugh hysterically down the block leading to your apartment building. He has a feigned look of annoyance on his face as you talk, exaggeratedly rolling his eyes. “C’mon, Peter, we didn’t get lost that bad this time. Seriously, we made it to Union Square, which was right by the R train, then we took it to the mall and hopped on the M which we took to the F, ridiculously simple!” You exclaim, taking a sip from your bottle of water. “You’re acting as if we, like, walked around in a circle for an hour.”
“Because that’s exactly what we did!” He replies, playfully punching you in the arm, but with a carefully light touch. Peter is, and has always been ever since it became a pressing issue, terribly aware of his enhanced strength and senses. He’s so nervous about accidentally hurting you when his intentions were to be playful that he does everything with extra caution now, barely letting himself touch you most of the time or even give a gentle squeeze of your hand. “We did walk in a a circle for an hour! And your phone died while you were trying to use Google Maps, it was pouring rain, you got so cold I had to give you my jacket which made me cold-”
You interrupt him, “No one said you had to give me your jacket!”
He continues on his rant, pretending as if you haven’t spoken even though the smirk twitching at the corners of his lips beg to differ- “we couldn’t figure out where we were which is stupid since we’re supposed to be New Yorkers, then finally I said to just keep walking straight, which we did until we found Union Square due to pure dumb luck.” Peter watches you throw your head back and laugh, high in sound and utterly happy, and he shoves his hands deep in his pockets, a stupidly thrilled grin on his face, too. He hated that he couldn’t stop grinning; it was ridiculous and it hurt his cheeks and made his eyes squint so hard they ached once he was finally able to let his mouth rest. Oh, how his heart couldn’t stop hammering! He was so nervous he could hardly think straight. Peter Parker was drowning, suffocating, choking on these emotions that had been so far buried deep, deep within the recesses of his heart that he hardly knew what to do with them now that they were drifting to the surface like leaves on a pond.
You can feel his eyes on you, the soft and sweet, carefully watching gaze of Peter, and so you take the moment for your own. You’re standing in front of the door to the apartment building when you whip around toward him, and he goes in for the hug like he knows what you’re planning to do. Instead, you lean up, take his face in your hands and you note how cold his cheeks are as you avoid his surprised gaze. Then, you’re kissing him. You are kissing Peter Parker in the way you’ve never kissed anyone before; it’s hesitant, over too fast like it never even happened, but you kissed him and he knows you’ve just kissed him, but the thoughts flipping through his brain and the way his stomach is clenching doesn’t allow him to form coherent sentences that you can hear and comprehend.
Instead of kissing you again, instead of lifting you up in his arms and spinning you around the street and singing like a madman because the person of his dreams seems to want him right back, he stutters for five seconds. The only words that he can manage to say are, “Thank you,” before he turns back around and quite literally sprints down the block to his own apartment.
When he gets home he collapses on his bed, grunting a hello to May before he shoves his pillow over his face and screams into it, unabashed screaming that he drags out for two minutes. He pulls back, red cheeked and panting. He immediately rolls over to call Ned, begging him to come over immediately and no, Ned, he doesn’t care about the comic you’re in the middle of reading because this is an emergency damn it!
“You said thank you?” Ned says incredulously, thirty minutes later and trying not to burst into hysterics after what his best friend had just relayed to him. He can’t help himself, and as Peter hugs his pillow to his chest with a look similar to that of someone who is experiencing severe indigestion, Ned wheezes out a laugh held in for so long that it just goes on forever. Peter buries his face in the plush, comforting fabric, emitting a groan that continues for as long as Ned cackles. “Dude, you’re a mess. I can’t believe you said thank you. Who says thank you after being kissed? For the first time? By someone you’ve been dying to kiss for the past, like, three years?” Ned is practically crying by the time Peter launches his pillow at his so called best friend, resting his fists against his cheeks and letting a pout befall his lips.
“Ned,” Peter whines, brown eyes pleading. “I need help. I said thank you! I hate myself, I shouldn’t be allowed to be kissed ever again. I’m… I’m so stupid. I said thank you! To Y/N! Y/N! Of all people! Thank you! Thank you.” He repeats the phrase with a sad, small shake of his head and lies back down on his bed. Ned stretches out across the top bunk, Peter can hear the old bed creak, and they both let out a sigh. “What should I do, man? Do you think Y/N hates me?”
Ned is quiet for a moment. “Right now? Y/N definitely hates you right now. I’m not even saying that to be mean, I’m saying that as your best friend. You said thank you.”
“I know,” he says, miserable and pathetic and contemplating what sort of injuries he might hypothetically sustain if he attempted a backflip off the edge of the Empire State Building.
“He said thank you?” Michelle Jones doesn’t even bother to wait, to even offer a dash of fake but well meant sympathy, before she erupts into hysterics, laughing so terribly hard that she nearly rolls off your twin bed. You stare at her, stone faced, unamused, as she continues her awful wheezing laughter that she has no intention of halting any time soon. “Oh my god, oh my god, I have to-” MJ abruptly stands up, stifling her laughter behind her hand as she leaves your bedroom, then closes the door behind her and starts laughing again. It’s loud, practically deafening, mostly because the laughter feels so mocking and smothering in lieu of recent events that had occurred less than an hour ago. You sigh, hugging your pillow even tighter to your chest as you wait for your so called best friend to return from her stint in the hallway.
“Oh, are you done now? Thanks,” you snap, shifting over on the bed to make room for her to clamor back on. “I can’t believe you. I’m having a crisis and you leave to go laugh at me in the hallway. What sort of friend are you, MJ?”
She shrugs, the ghost of a hilariously mocking grin still playing at her mouth. “The friend who tells it like it is.”
You huff, lying down on the bed and staring up at the glow in the dark stars you had stuck up there when you were fourteen, the July before you started high school. You put them up with Peter, and it was late and hot and your palms were sticky with sweat that sometimes wonder was due to the heat of the summer or the boy sitting next to you in your room, on your tiny bed, rambling on about the rings that Jupiter had, because yes Jupiter has rings, and the reasons as to why stars emit light. Peter was always there, never wavering in his loyalties, your most beloved friend, the boy who promised over and over again that he’d be there for you no matter what. He was Peter, and you loved Peter, and if Peter didn’t love you back that would be just fine- you just wanted to know sooner rather than later. “What should I do? Is he, like, repulsed by me? Why would you let me kiss him, Michelle?”
“Uh, excuse me, I didn’t even know you were planning on planting a big one on Peter Parker, so any blame cast on me is henceforth cancelled. Got that? Good,” Michelle brushes her hair out of her eyes, that intense look appearing on her already intense face. “First of all, that loser is physically incapable of being repulsed by you. I’m just telling you that right now before you go off on a stupid tangent about whether or not he hates you. That’s final. Next, he’s never been kissed before! He was definitely overwhelmed, probably freaking out inside, didn’t know what to do, and that was the first thing that popped into his head and he ran with it and then he ran away. Understandable. Finally, boys are just stupid. All of them. They’re all complete morons, and-”
“Okay, Michelle, the idiotic tendencies of people who identify as a male is a riveting debate that we enjoy quite frequently, but tonight I think I’m done talking boys. I’m going to just… let things happen as they should? If Peter likes me, he’ll tell me, and that’ll be that. I just won’t bring up the kiss. I’ll pretend like it didn’t happen.” With a satisfied nod, MJ pats your head, then, for a split second, snorts under her breath again.
She holds her hands up defensively, exclaiming, “He still said thank you! He’s never living this shit down!”
The next day at school, Peter is prepared and ready for the conversation he anticipates is going to happen. He is ready to be understanding if you yell at him for being a complete and utter ass after you kissed him, he’s ready to spill his bottled up feelings all over the linoleum floor if that’s what it takes for you to believe that the kiss was the best thing he’s ever experienced, ever would experience, and he’s ready for the beginning of everything he’s ever dreamt of, but none of that comes. At least, not immediately, not in the way he expected.
The boy has always thought himself a patient person, but in the months that have passed he’s realized that under no circumstances is he okay with waiting. He’s impatient and annoyed at everyone and everything that comes his way that isn’t you, and then he’s annoyed at you for not appearing to him and acknowledging that you kissed him on the front steps of your apartment building with a fervor that could only be identified as the crashing, burning, raging, bursting power of pent up emotion. He knows he has hardly any classes with you, so there’s no conceivable way you could have an in depth discussion of your relationship status as of this very moment, but still. He’d appreciate a gesture of some kind. And then, after this thought pops into his head, he wonders if he should be the one to make the gesture.
Prompt with following his instincts, he sets off to find you before you can avoid him at lunch like he knows you will. He stands by your locker, leaning against the cool metal frame, waiting for you to make an appearance. He sees you first, and by now this is simply rote for him. You don’t have time to even attempt to duck out of his way; Peter is determined, stubborn, and he won’t lose out on his chance by allowing you to go on ignoring him. Even if you don’t want a relationship, a decision he’ll respect wholeheartedly, he flat out refuses to even entertain the idea of no longer having you as his best friend, as his other kind of love. He takes your hand, silent begging scrawled across the weakened, anxious smile he gives you. He leads you toward the front of the school, around a bend of empty lockers, and takes a step back.
Neither of you really look at each other until he says, unexpectedly, “You kissed me!” It’s almost accusatory, the way he says it, and, affronted, you look back up at him in alarm.
“And you said thank you!” You retort, eyes narrowed. “Who says that!” The entire reason you’ve been avoiding him was to avoid this discussion. It was making you feel feverish. Peter had always made you nervous, it was painfully obvious, but this was so much different than just incessant butterflies in your stomach. This was a post-kiss conversation, and you hardly knew what to say to him other than repeating the previous query of, “Seriously, who tells someone thank you after they’ve just kissed you!”
The question is rhetorical, so he ignores it. That, and because he’s already embarrassed enough by his tactless reply. He waves his hands around aggressively. “I know! I know I did! I didn’t mean to! You scared me!”
“I didn’t mean it like that! You’re not scary, you’re like a baby deer, a fawn, you’re so cute and non-intimidating, I didn’t mean that you were scary I meant that I’ve never been kissed and being kissed by the person you have a crush on is a scary thing especially when it comes out of nowhere so I’m sorry that I said thank you but I just didn’t- my brain doesn’t work sometimes, okay!” Peter runs his hands through his hair. One curl flips down, curling over his forehead in a stupidly cute way.
“Peter, you literally drive me up the wall, sometimes.” You shake your head, give a sigh, take two steps forward so that you’re so much closer to him than you were before even though two steps shouldn’t feel like you’re closing the widest gap in history. “Should I not have kissed you?”
His pretty brown eyes go wide. “Did you not hear the part where I called you cute? And the part where I said I have a crush on you? Do you have selective hearing? Work with me here,” he pleads, taking holding of your shoulders and giving the gentlest shake he can manage.
“So, kissing is a yes, then?” You press, just to make sure, just to tease him a little because you can see the way he grows more and more flustered each time you act like you have no idea what he’s talking about. He closes his eyes. There’s a deep inhalation while you stand there waiting for him, and when he kisses you, you’re the one taken by surprise, hands frozen in midair as he lets his lips move from yours in this painfully slow way you’re almost sure he’s taunting you with. You open your mouth to speak, but he beats you to the punch.
“I swear, if you ruin this moment and say it-”
“Thank you, Peter.”
“I think we’re going to have to break up before we’re even together. You blew it, Y/N. Good work.”
“Aw, c’mon! It’ll be our thing.”
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