Thankfully the school day seemed to go along smoothly. It was hard to check his phone during class, but there seemed to be no major reports of crime that would require his attention as Spider-Man. Even if there was though he still wondered how he would be able to get away with it. He knew he couldn't just ask to go to the bathroom and then vanish for a long period of time.
Well he could but he knew it would affect his good reputation at school. If he kept skipping out on class and wouldn't give a reason why, he knew he could totally be expelled for it. That was the last thing that he wanted! He needed to graduate so he could go on to college and pursue a career. Though on the other hand being a superhero was technically a career wasn't it? Surely there had to be something for that if he decided to go on it full time, but even then a high school education would be important.
"I highly doubt I'll have to use calculus or know the anatomy of a frog in battle… but you never know," Prompto thought to himself.
Currently he was at lunch staring out the nearby window. He fiddled with a strand of his hair almost subconsciously while he waited for Noctis to come and join him. There was a way of telling Noctis was close by for the girls at the tables in front and behind him started to whisper and giggle louder.
He looked up just in time to see Noctis sitting down right next to him. "Any fangirls give you trouble on your way over?"
"When do they not. Honestly they gawk at me so much and think I am some other worldly thing that can't be talked to."
"Dude you are some otherworldly thing," Prompto chuckled while nudging Noctis lightly in the side.
Noctis pressed a hand against Prompto's face, trying to shove him back. "Oh ha ha, very funny. But I guess that means you are the only one insane enough to talk to me."
"I wouldn't consider myself exactly normal, so compliment taken!" Prompto replied, knowing that his words truly did have a double meaning now.
Noctis laughed. "I'll give you that much, but you know at least it isn't bad as how those girls drool over superheroes, right?"
Prompto quickly pressed his lips together, too afraid he would blurt out the wrong thing too soon. Sure he had just shown up over the summer as Spider-Man, but he knew already people were talking. Many already were wondering just who he was and who was hidden under the mask. Some crazy theorist wanted to believe he had some disfiguring hence why he wanted to hide his face, which he understood but of course it was far from that.
He just felt more confident being able to say whatever he wanted without having people see his face when he did it. Behind a mask that covered his entire face he felt like he was free to be whatever he wanted and escape some of the judgement that would come if he had a face to go alone with it.
"Yeah, you're right there," Prompto answered. After a quick pause he decided to say something else, something that was itching at the back of his mind. He knew he had to be careful of what he was going to say, but he was very curious. Reading blogs and forums was one thing, but getting the opinions of his best friend was another.
"But… on the topic of superheroes… what do you think of that new guy?"
"New guy? Oh you mean that Spider-Man guy?" Noctis asked, tilting his head back. "What about him?"
"Oh you know, just like stuff. He just kind of showed up one day."
"Yeah I guess that he did. But from what I saw on the news he doesn't seem to be doing any harm. Funny looking costume though."
"What's funny about it!" Prompto shouted a little louder than he would have wanted to. "I mean like all superheroes have strange costumes so what's so weird about his?"
"I don't know, maybe just not used to seeing something so bright. Like comparing it to Nightwing or Batman. They like wearing dark colors, better for sneaking in the shadows and stuff or something like that," Noctis replied before finally digging into his lunch. "I wouldn't really know too much, but I am just guessing."
"You think that's why Nightwing became, uh well Nightwing? You know darker colors than the Robin costume."
"Oh definitely," Noctis replied with a rather serious confirming tone. "That outfit works so much better for m… for the man. Like good for him and his choice. Shows heroes do have some thought to their persona."
"Yeah, but Spider-Man's outfit ain't all too bad at least. Kind of creative and stuff, right?"
"Totally. Out of all the ideas for a 'spider' themed costume that's pretty cool."
Prompto breathed in happily. Even if he couldn't tell Noctis the truth that he was Spider-Man, he was glad to know Noctis liked his craft. It had taken so many hours of planning and designing and Prompto was thankful that he knew how to sew. He had made cosplays in the past with Noctis for conventions and he actually found the art of designing and making costumes fun. It had taken a little more effort to design and create an entire new and fresh outfit rather than making something like an Assassin's Creed outfit, but the end result he felt rather proud.
"Cool indeed," Prompto agreed happily. "So wanna hit up the arcades after school? A new start to the year of playing video games before doing homework."
"Of course! I gotta take back my high scores! Oh hey did they add any new games over the summer?"
Prompto had to think for a moment. Most of the summer he had spent learning his new powers and he really didn't get as much time as he wanted at the arcades. There was that and also actually fighting crime. The entire summer was probably his most busy yet.
"Uh I don't remember."
Noctis wrapped an arm around Prompto, laughing. "What do you mean you don't remember? Didn't you basically spend the entire summer there and nothing else?"
"H-Hey! I did more than just that!"
"Oh yeah," Noctis asked with a wide grin. "What else then? Entertain me."
"Uh well you know, stuff. Other stuff that wasn't arcades."
"Like what?" Noctis asked, leaning in closer to Prompto's face.
He could see the deep blue of Noctis's eyes and for a moment he became lost in them. He wanted to just stare but if he waited too long he knew things would get awkward. He scooted back and stood up straight, trying to find his voice again.
"Y-You know stuff and things."
"Stuff and things?" Noctis raised an eyebrow. "Like playing video games at home for hours?"
Prompto bit his cheek, trying not to seem suspicious but he couldn't help but feel nervous. He was lying to Noctis after all and it did make him feel bad. Lying to his best friend was never something he wanted to do, but he knew it was all for a good reason. If he wanted to keep Noctis safe, then this was the coast of that.
"Yeah! You know it! Just a ton of video games, oh! And photography!"
"Well of course, it wouldn't be you without your camera."
Prompto smiled, seeing that Noctis bought what he was saying. "Yup you know me. Mr. Camera guy!"
"And how is it taking yet another semester of Photography? Have you driven the teacher insane yet?"
Prompto let out a laugh. "No way! I'm his best student! I got the most passion for this kind of stuff!"
"Yeah I know, you rattle my ears off talking about it."
"Well you better be prepared for another semester of it!"
The two of them laughed and then finally decided that it would be a good time to actually eat their lunch. Though they still held on to some of their idle chatter, mainly with talk of new video games coming out or what their plans would be when they actually got to the arcade. But the end of the school day still felt like forever to Prompto.
When school was finally out Noctis and Prompto rushed out as fast as they could to the arcade. It was just the two of them now and Prompto was ready to totally creme Noctis at every game once again. He was almost giddy about it, realizing how badly he actually had missed this.
"You seem awfully excited," Nocits replied with a nudge to his side.
"Yeah cause it's been an entire summer since I wiped the floors with you! I really missed you over the summer you know. And before you say it, you already apologized this morning! You don't need to do it again."
Noctis sighed as he rubbed the back of his neck. "I still feel bad though. We only got a few days here and there and that was only at the start."
"You already explained yourself though. It's the life of being a prince and I get it. I just enjoy the time that we got together."
Noctis smiled. "Thanks for understanding. If my life wasn't so busy being a prince it would be a lot easier."
Prompto snickered. "Well you should know enough how the common pleb lives from being around me."
A sudden chill ran through Prompto's body, a sensation that something bad was going to happen. It was all a part of the new abilities that he had as Spider-Man, this preemptive sensation, it still was a bit strange to get used to. But he had spent the summer dealing with moments where he felt that weird quick tingle like a shiver running down his spine.
He was about to wonder what was going to happen when loud alarms blared further down the street. They were so close to the arcade but now across from it a store was being robbed. From the looks of it, it was a jewelry store and the front door was completely torn off and from where Prompto stood he could see several shadowed figures inside.
"Shit we should um maybe go to the arcade another day," Prompto whispered, trying to sound like he was actually nervous. What he really wanted to do was sneak away to change into his costume, but he had no idea how he was going to do that with Noctis standing there with him. Part of him knew that with it just being a robbery they could turn away and leave it to the police but he had no idea when the police would get there. He knew if he could do something about it now, it would be better in the long run.
"Prom, we should do something. I mean like not getting involved but also make sure the police know or something. I'll run and phone the police, you run and hide but like film the cimr scene for evidence."
"Huh?" Prompto asked, turning his head to look at Noctis. He hadn't even thought that far. Knowing that time was of the essence he nodded quickly. "Yeah yeah, go do that!"
"Just stay safe and out of sight okay?" Noctis replied before turning to run away from where the crime was happening.
"Out of sight… sure…" Prompto whispered as he backed up to the nearby alley. When he was far enough back he opened up his school bag and took out his outfit. He would have worn it under his clothes since the school bag was fairly small, but he had no idea how he would get away with it at gym class.
"Maybe I can just be excused from the gym this year… and the next. Noct doesn't get to do gym cause of his back issues… so maybe I can ask him what I could do," Prompto thought to himself as he changed as fast as he could. Thankfully his costume wasn't too complex, it was just the suit and the web shooters.
Once he pulled his mask over his face, he shoved his school uniform into his bag and hid it between the nearby boxes that were in the alley. He pleaded that nothing would be stolen while he was out there, and then without further ado he shot a web to the top of the building and propelled himself up to top.
Now that he was up there he could still see that there were figures moving around. The thieves were still inside and no doubt causing more trouble. He swung down to ground level and placed himself firmly in the doorway.
There he could see the jewelry from all the cases was ransacked, placed into black bags that the thugs were using. There were only four of them, so he knew it wouldn't be too much of a big fight. He could handle four jewelry thieves.
"All right guys, it's not even Valentine's Day. Or are you just trying to get ahead before they jack up the prices?" Spider-Man stated, speaking up loud enough to be heard clearly.
The four thugs turned to look at him, all of them wearing the usual masks. Though he could see their eyes glaring at him. He only chuckled as a response. "And seriously, robbing the jewelry store during the day time? You guys must be newbies."
"Little punk thinks he can sass us," one of them grumbled.
"Yeah what makes him think he can do that," a different one added.
Spider-Man scoffed, about to give a quip reply back when there was a sound behind him. Turning around he was now face to face with none other than Nightwing. He gasped but knew his shocked expression was lost under the mask.
"Oh, so it looks like you beat me to it. You're fast I'll give you that," Nightwing said as he crossed his arms. "At least there's an even amount. Fair that way."
"A little teamwork to beat up some dumb thugs? Awesome!" Spider-Man cheered, trying not to let his excitement show too much. The last thing he needed was to seem like a geeky fanboy in front of Nightwing.
One thug grunted. "Hey! Are they seriously going to stand there and chat while we are right here?"
"How rude," one scoffed. "We might as well teach 'em a lesson."
Dropping the bags the thugs started to move closer to Spider-Man and Nightwing, cracking their knuckles in the process. Just before they got close enough, Spider-Man looked to Nightwing once more. "You… may wanna stand back a bit. We don't wanna rough up the shop too much."
Nightwing obliged and right away Spider-Man shot webbing out to the four men since they were close enough, thanking himself internally that they were not all super big and bulky. The four of them being of average size made what he was about to do a lot easier.
With the strength he now had he pulled them forward towards him, though he jumped back out of way, leaving the men to topple up on top of each other in the doorway. He shot the pile of men with more webs until they were basically cocooned in the stuff.
Once again he was grinning knowing it was pointless, but he felt good anyways. "Ah ha, I know you were probably expecting to fight them and stuff, but I guess I just got carried away."
"Well it isn't over yet," Nightwing replied. "Not until the police arrive."
"Right. So like, just in this area of Insomnia?" Spider-Man asked as casually as he could.
"Yup," Nightwing said, popping the p of the word.
Though Spider-Man was hoping for a nice little conversation, he felt a tingling sensation again. He really needed a name for it, especially if it was going to now be a recurring thing in his life. Turning around he saw the men in the doorway laughing and one of them had their hand free, holding a small black device in it.
Nightwing seemed to have seen it too for he grabbed Spider-Man by the shoulder and yanked him back seconds before an explosion came from the store. They were still too close though and the force of the blast knocked the two off the ground.
"They had already set up explosives?! When!" Spider-Man exclaimed as he jumped to his feet. "But they were stuck in the doorway wouldn't they have…" His eyes trailed to the door where the thugs were… or once were. Though that thought didn't get a lot of time for something more pressing entered his mind. "Oh shit the workers may still be inside!" He was staring at the store now, flames flickering from the now broken window.
"Come on then don't just stand there!" Nightwing shouted before charging forward right into the burning store.
Spider-Man followed after with a running leap. The inside of the building was practically a roaring fire, the heat making Spider-Man sweat heavily.
"Did you see any workers when you got here?" Nightwing shouted over the roar of the flames.
"N-No! I only saw the thugs no one else," Spider-Man shouted back. "One of us should check in back!"
"Right! I'll do that! You stay up front and make sure the fire doesn't spread anywhere else."
Spider-Man nodded and headed back out to the front of the building. He looked once more to see where the thugs could have gone to. The explosion was a little big, but it wasn't enough to just completely vaporize the four thugs in the doorway. But no matter where he looked he didn't see anything, not even scraps of clothing.
"What if there was some spooky voodoo stuff? No way that couldn't be… but like there are super villains. Who's to say that wasn't something like that? Gotta ask Nightwing after."
Nightwing jumped out from the building a moment later, his expression grim. "I didn't see anyone, the place was completely barren of all life."
"Y-You don't think that the explosion-"
"No, not the type to do that. There should have at least been bodies," Nightwing replied casually. He had seemed so much at this point, Spider-Man knew that, but it was so weird to see him talk so casually about it. BUt he had to expect that from the guy, he was usually serious about everything, just like his father. "The thugs though?"
"Nowhere to be seen! Not even body parts or anything," Spider-Man said before he shuddered at the thought of what he just said. He was honestly glad that was not the case. He was brave, sure, but he wasn't ready to deal with super gory stuff just yet.
From the distant Spider-Man could hear the police and fire truck sirens. It wouldn't be long now before the fire was put out and they could go back to their regular day. He saw Nightwing motion to follow and the two of them jumped up to the rooftop, out of sight of the police that would soon become.
"Geez I am glad Nightwing's here. I almost forgot it's better to stay out of sight of the police in tough situations…" Spider-Man thought to himself as he landed gracefully on the roof.
"So random daytime robbers, an explosion, and missing people… ot actually lack of people anywhere on this street..." Nightwing muttered. "Seems like something may be up."
"Oh? You think so?" Prompto asked. He honestly had no noticed until now that the street had been vacant the entite time.
"I've been doing this for years. This has suspicion written all over it. This really could be something bigger than I thought…"
"Oh…" Spider-Man muttered. He knew going to save people came with risks, and there were further risks with teaming up with Nightwing. But something like this felt ominous, something uncertain. If there was something bigger at play, he had the feeling this year was going to be difficult.