When Jack says, “I’m seeing someone. It’s serious,” Alicia hopes he can’t see that she’s digging her nails into Bob’s arm.
“Oh?” She smiles. “Really?”
Bob says nothing. Alicia glances at him, and finds that he’s blinking at the screen of her laptop, head cocking to the side.
“Yeah,” Jack continues. Alicia watches him wipe his hands on the legs of his jeans.
Oh, my baby, she thinks. Don’t be afraid.
Jack says, “It’s Bitty. Uh– Eric Bittle? You know him–”
Bob lets out a rush of air next to her and it startles Alicia into turning her head fully to watch him rub a hand over his face.
“Thank god,” Bob mutters. Alicia doesn’t think Jack hears it. “That’s wonderful,” he says to Jack. “Since when?”
“Oh,” Jack half-smiles. “Well. Graduation day.”
Alicia lets up on her grip on Bob’s arm and laughs. “Well, then! You’ve kept quiet.”
“Yeah,” Jack says, quiet. “I didn’t… I thought it might worry you. I don’t know.”
“He’s adorable,” Bob says. Alicia watches embarrassment, but also full agreement on her son’s face. “I knew– Well. I thought maybe.”
“Papa,” Jack rolls his eyes. “Not you too.”
“Who else would you have taken off for the way that you did?” Bob demands. “I’m not blind, Jack, christ. But– What. Me too?”
“We told the Samwell guys,” Jack says. “Right before Thanksgiving. Bitty needed to, he was. It was hard for him.”
Alicia feels herself smiling wider. “My baby,” she says. “Tell us about him.”
And Jack does. Alicia thinks if she makes it through this conversation without bursting into grateful tears, she’ll have earned a medal in self-control. Jack looks like he hasn’t looked in years. Maybe a decade. Alicia is staring at a grown man, but he finally looks like her son again, the little boy he was before hockey got truly serious, before he went away and out of her reach for so long. Jack smiles, he talks. It’s stumbling and a little rusty, but he tells them about his life and barely mentions hockey.
“You’ve seen him play,” Jack is saying to his father, radiating pride. “He’s fast, he’s intuitive. And he’s made insane improvements, just mind blowing. Shitty and I went to their opener and he– Ah. Sorry.”
Bob and Alicia simultaneously snap out of their shared awe.
Bob says, “Go on.”
“No, it’s… I’m rambling.”
Alicia says, “We love Eric. You know that. I follow him on Twitter, he’s just a delight.”
And his tweets make so much sense now, Alicia thinks but doesn’t say.
“You said it’s serious?” Bob leans forward. “What does that mean?”
Jack takes a deep breath. “I’m not going to hide him. Not forever. Not for long, even.”
Alicia catches her breath and laces her fingers with her husband’s. “Jack, I’m so…”
“We’re so immensely proud,” Bob finishes. “So proud. I don’t have to tell you it won’t be easy.”
“Ha,” Jack looks down and away, shakes his head. “No, you don’t.”
“But you wouldn’t want to come out for just anyone, would you?”
Alicia squeezes Bob’s hand, watches Jack shake his head at his father’s question.
“No,” Jack says. “If I were alone, or if this was casual. It wouldn’t matter. I mean. I wouldn’t be doing this at all if it were casual. I don’t–”
Alicia can’t help herself, she’s melting from the inside out. She nearly says, Jack, you’re in love. She doesn’t. She says, “It’ll be worth it?”
“Yes,” Jack says, smiling and smiling and handsome and whole. “He’s worth it.”
Alicia makes eye contact with Bob, sees the same wonder she feels.
“Okay,” she says. “So I think we should have dinner, don’t you?”
michelle was younger, she didn’t exactly have a lot of suitors knocking down
her door. none of her classmates were leaving cute notes in her locker or asking
her to be their valentine. so maybe michelle is feeling a little nervous as she
sits in front of the mirror on friday night. prom night.
is in the gym of midtown high. everyone agreed to leave her apartment at seven
because who needs to show up on time? unless you’re cindy and you’re working
the prom, but they don’t have that concern. everyone is supposed to arrive at
her house at six thirty for snacks and prom pictures™.
which means peter should be arriving in approximately eight minutes if his
previous history is any indication.
takes a deep breath, looking at herself in the mirror. her mother absolutely adored the red of her dress. so she took
the lead with everything else prom related. she’s wearing her mom’s red heels
from the nineties and her mom’s bold red lipstick from…well…from sephora, she
doesn’t ask her mom about date nights with her dad. that’s just…weird.
knows she looks beautiful. but part
of her is worried. because, well, her previous crushes haven’t always thought
so and she’s nervous that, despite all the signs she’s hoping that she’s
reading correctly, peter only likes her as a friend.
her father calls from outside her bedroom door. “peter is here.” he slowly
opens the door, sticking his head around. his smile spreads wide and bright
across his face as he walks over to his daughter. “mj, honey, you look
beautiful.” he hugs her tightly and mj smiles into his shoulder. she really
loves her dad. but oh god, is he
you promised!” she pushes him away, hitting him lightly on the shoulder, though
she’s chuckling with a bright grin on her face.
know, I know!” he wipes his tears quickly and takes a deep breath. “but it’s
just you and I here, so it’s okay. I won’t cry in front of your boyfriend.” he draws out the word in a
song and shakes his shoulders from side to side when he says it and michelle
groans and wants to stomp off but these heels are higher than she’s used to so
she just walks, simple and dignified.
waits at her door for her dad, nonetheless. and if she grabs his hand before
walking to the stairs, that’s nobody’s business. she’s allowed to do-
is no way peter parker should ever be allowed to look that good.
Ohhhhhhh I hate it when people honestly compare batman and iron man and there is always some jackass in the comments like “batman is just better than iron man. Why? Because he’s batman!” Like yes Carl we understand that batman is a meme but we’re trying to have a conversation here and your obnoxious comment is going to be repeated 18374829 times in the notes so just leave please