Sam Guthrie “Cannonball” and Angelica Jones “Firestar” are sitting in the backseat of a New York City taxi cab being driven to The Baxter Building to meet their friend Johnny Storm “The Human Torch”.
Sam was giddy with excitement and could barely keep himself contained, “You’re going to love Cumberland county Angelica, trust me. It’s got so much charm and character, Guy Fieri was just there at one of the local restaurants. He said the ribs he ate were ‘money’”.
Angelica looked less than impressed, “Oh, Guy Fieri huh? My whole body is covered in fire because I’m a mutant; what’s his excuse?”
“Er, he thinks it looks ‘money’, I guess?” Sam said sheepishly.
“Guy Fieri sucks!” yelled the cabbie from the front seat. “I took my kid to his restaurant for her birthday and we saw two rats running around the dining room. After that I said ‘no way’ and got the heck out of there”.
Angelica smiled smugly at Sam. He shrugged and grabbed her hand, “I’m just saying, the town might be small but we’re not totally off the grid. We’ve even got a shopping mall with a Bed, Bath and Beyond in it!” Sam was incredibly excited at the prospect of visiting Bed, Bath & Beyond.
“Jesus, Sam.” “I know! Praise Jesus”.
“Praise Jesus!” said a voice coming from the religious DVD Isaac was watching on the portable player he had brought along on the trip. He was wearing headphones so as not disturb May and Peter after they flat out refused to let him put it on the RV’s entertainment system.
“Yep, God’s NOT dead, amen”, he said to himself.
Peter had only been driving for an hour but since they left so late at night we was starting to get sleepy. Aunt May had told him that they’d be staying at an RV park 4 hours away in Pennsylvania and he couldn’t wait to get there and crash. The lawsuit issue was getting to him; how could anyone sue Spider-Man? It made no sense, you can’t sue an anonymous person…still, it worried him. May looked over and could read the worry on his face.
“What are you thinking about Peter?” she asked.
“Nothing, well, sort of nothing. I don’t know, I just…I can’t stop thinking about that jewelry store owner who wants to sue Spider-Man. She doesn’t know his identity so how will she even be able to do it? It seems like a publicity stunt, but then again maybe she does know my identity. What if she’s been talking to Doc Ock, or Norman, or heck, there are other super heroes who know who I am. What if Captain America got a bug up his butt and thought I should pay up. It’s just weird, plus I’m tired”.
“Peter,” May said, “you’re over thinking this, dear. Your friends and enemies have better things to do that sue you. Just focus on the trip and you’ll be fine”.
Peter looked out ahead into the darkness of the highway and hoped Aunt May was right.
“Of course I’m right!” yelled Sam. “How could you let someone else take the RV when I had asked you weeks ago to borrow it?”
Johnny Storm was frantically looking through the calendar on his phone and slapped his palm against his forehead when he saw in big, bold letters “RV for Sam and Angie *DO NOT FORGET*” on today’s date.
“Well shoot, I guess I forgot. Sorry about that Sam, umm, do you want to borrow the Fantasti-Car? No one is really using it right now”, said Johnny in his best salesman voice.
Sam looked annoyed, “No! If I wanted to fly I would have done it myself. I wanted to relax and enjoy the open road. Geez; so who did you give it to?”
“Spider-Man”, said Johnny.
Angelica started to laugh, “Peter has it? That’s just great. Did he leave town because he’s being sued?”
The two men looked puzzled, “What do you mean sued?” asked Johnny. Angelica grabbed a remote and pushed a button, causing a robot butler to come out holding drinks. She put that remote down and grabbed another, pushing that button caused the sound system to start blaring Mariachi music at full volume. She put that remote down and grabbed a third one, this time the button she pressed activated a wall of strobe lights to turn on and smoke to fill the room.
“What is happening!” yelled Angelica. “Johnny, fix this, I just want to watch TV!” Johnny grabbed each of the remotes and turned everything off. Just as Sam was about to grab a drink the robot butler made an about face and went back to wherever it came from, Sam looked sad.
“Sorry, the TV isn’t controlled by remote; it’s voice activated. TV, turn on”. The TV came on and was already on the news “…is suing Spider-Man for blah blah blah…”
Johnny scratched his head, “So they’re suing Spider-Man and not Peter? I don’t understand, how do you sue a Super-Hero?”
“Well now we know who has the RV, so where are they going?” asked Sam.
“San Diego. I guess Aunt May wants to see the zoo there”, Johnny replied.
“Why do we even need the RV?” asked Angelica. I bet we could fly there faster than they can drive there.
Sam turned to her, “I told you, for the experience of driving there. For the time together”.
“Maybe you think I’ll beat you there Mr. Slow-Poke”, Angelica had a devilish grin on her face.
Sam stood up and crossed his arms, “Seriously? You think you’re faster than me? HA! I could fly there and back before you were even half way”.
Johnny chortled, “Get real Sam. I’ve seen you fly and it’s nowhere near as fast as Angelica and I. Face it tiger, you’re a slow-poke”.
Angelica shot Johnny a look, “Excuse me? You think you’re as fast as I am? In your dreams maybe. I bet I could beat both of you that RV right now”.
“Psh, yeah right. Besides, we don’t even know where they are”, said Sam.
Johnny held up his phone and pointed the screen, “Actually the RV has a tracking device and I can see them on this app we created. You could download it and see where they are”.
Angelica pulled out her phone, “What are we waiting for?”
Isaac was waiting next to the toaster oven for his bagel to be done. “This RV has everything!” he thought to himself.
It was just after 1:00 AM when the RV arrived at campground and it was really starting to hit Peter. He had spent most of the day stopping various crooks around town and of course had his big Bugatti chase earlier which led to the lawsuit against Spider-Man. Isaac was kind of weird and he didn’t really want to sit around and watch the old man eat his bagel so he stepped out of the RV. He saw Aunt May sitting down in a lawn chair near a light on the RV. Grabbing another one, he decided to join her.
Peter noticed she wasn’t wearing a jacket, “You’re going to get cold Aunt May. Hold on, I’ll get you a jacket or something”. Peter got up and started for the RV.
“I’m fine Peter, I’m not some frail old woman”, she said.
“Aunt May, listen to me, it’s too cold out here for you. I’ll get the jacket”, Peter continued.
“Peter Parker, I don’t need a jacket. Now sit down!” May said sternly.
Peter sat back down and folded his arms. Here he was, nearing thirty and his Aunt was still scolding him, “I’m just looking out for you Aunt May. You need someone to”.
“Really?” she asked with a bit of sarcasm and spite, “I need someone to look after me? Well you’re doing a hell of a job young man. Tell me, when was the last time you came to see me? Heck, when was the last time you even called me?”
Peter turned a little white, “Er, well I’ve just been busy with Parker Industries, you know. Plus I still am Spider-Man full time and crime doesn’t sleep.” It was at this point Peter realized he was really tired, and it was making him cranky, “You know what Aunt May, you dragged me out here with some weird little creep, made me run away from my problems, and rub it in my face that I don’t call you enough; and for what? What are we doing out here? Huh? San Diego? Why are we going to San Diego? I just want to sleep!”
“My reasons are my own, and that should be good enough for you”, she said in a calm but stern voice. “Go to bed Peter, we have some long days ahead of us. Best not to be cranky”.
Peter gave his Aunt a look and acted like he was about to say something but then changed his mind. He walked back into the RV, took of his shoes and laid down in one of the beds. In the background he could hear Isaac eating his bagel. “You shouldn’t talk to your aunt like that”, he said. Peter thought about getting up and punching the little guy in his face but decided against it. Maybe tomorrow.
May continued to sit outside and stare off into the darkness of the forest. She heard a whooshing sound above her head and then saw an owl had perched in a nearby tree. It was looking in her direction and she wondered if it saw her. Did anyone see her?
“I see you redecorated, it looks nice in here”. The driver of the Bugatti was standing inside of a lavish office with windows overlooking New York City. In the distance he saw three streaks of light flying out of the Baxter building but didn’t think much of it at the time. “How’s the feng shui? I assume you set it up for maximum wealth based on this haul”. He dropped the bag of jewels on the floor and crossed his arms.
An older man with glasses wearing a brown suit was sitting behind a desk. He motioned for two large men to go and retrieve the bag. One bent down and opened the bag while the other pulled a gun and pointed it at the driver. “Hey, hey fellas, come on. No need for that; you don’t trust me?” the driver asked.
The goon at the bag looked at the older man and gave a thumbs up. “We’re good here, thank you Mr. Saunders”, the older man said. The goon with the gun backed off and both walked back over to the older man.
The driver smiled, “Please, call me Speed Demon, and the pleasure was all mine, Mr. Owlsley. What’s the next job?”
Leland Owlsley opened a drawer in his desk and handed a folder to one of his goons who walked it over to Speed Demon. Owlsley spoke, “This one will require your actual speed, and not just your driving ability. Are you up to the task?”
Speed Demon let out a little laugh, “Heh, heh. Where do I begin?”