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Amazing Spider-Man Vol 5 15 Textless.jpg
Spider-Man
I don't want to fight you.
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Amazing Spider-Man Vol 5 75 Lee Virgin Variant.jpg
Spider-Man
Because you're still hurt.
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Spider-Man
No, because you are!
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Amazing Spider-Man Vol 5 75 Lee Virgin Variant.jpg
Spider-Man
Don't act like you want to help me!
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Amazing Spider-Man Vol 5 15 Textless.jpg
Spider-Man
All I ever wanted is to help you!
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Appearing in 1st story

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Synopsis for 1st story

As Ben Reilly recalls his first time taking over as Spider-Man, the memory of Peter mentioning him and Mary Jane clearing out the attic to make room triggered a shift to another memory of her yelling at Ben as Scarlet Spider. Back in the attic with Peter, Ben remembers how he felt bad and didn't want Peter to know how much he wanted all the trinkets and items, that Mary Jane was right that it was Peter's life, even though Peter knew Ben shared the memories. But now, Ben's memories of those times are missing, leaving voids where faces and emotions should be. At present, Hornet asks Ben if he is OK, as Ben explains his memories were altered and he needed Maxine Danger, despite the Slingers' orders to remove him now that he's fired. Ricochet informs Ben that they can't disclose Maxine's location and Dusk asks he remember them, despite him confirming he already knows who they are and proceeds to not pull his punches.

Elsewhere, Maxine in her safe room runs the numbers and concludes that with no new factors involved, Beyond can survive Ben's rampage. As Marcus asks if she'll scrub "Spider-Man," she affirms Ben until Marcus notes the original is on his way, forcing Maxine to call the Board of Directors. As Peter arrives at Beyond Tower, Mary Jane calls him and asks he be understanding of Ben's situation even if he abandoned her to Queen Goblin. Entering, Peter notes the destruction Ben caused and is creeped out that Langston recognizes him down to the genetic signature. Prepared, Maxine is met by Ben demanding his memories, but she confirms that no copies were stored per Ben's request to protect the identity of the original Spider-Man. As she notes that Ben "messed up" she then asks if he's courageous enough to fix it, as the original Spider-Man arrived on scene. When voicing his likely refusal, Ben attacks her defensive of his friend, revealing Maxine is a hologram gaslighting him to make the original share the lost memories, and that Ben should make him if he's not willing.

In hiding, Maxine steps off a platform content her machinations will keep both Spider-Men distant from her. Speaking to Marcus, Maxine tells him that she ordered the kill team to make his death seem like an accident, but without the alcohol theme so he can have an open casket, as a thanks for his hard work and his family won't be ashamed. Despite Marcus's pleads, Maxine states she has some fond memories of their work history and doesn't want to sour them with the look on his face at his end, bidding him goodbye. Outside, as Peter comes upon panicked guards looking for the Infantilizer Gun, Ben arrives and knocks them out finding Peter. A startled Peter asks Ben's condition, with Ben stating Peter wear a helmet to copy his memories. But while Peter notes Beyond may have deeper motivations, Ben voices that he's not asking Peter to take it. As the kill squad escort Marcus, he rambles on until Janine shows up to save him. As one of the guards notes her gun, she confirms it as the Infantilizer before de-aging the kill squad back to infancy. As Marcus was concerned with reverting them back, Janine was apathetic considering their orders to kill him earlier, and dismissed his directions for the exit.

As Peter tries to coax Ben down, Ben comments on how Peter's voice was the conscience in his head about everything from his origin to his motives. But with that gone, Ben notes that he hears it in the second person, that now he IS that second person, wanting only to have what was lost to him, and that Peter no longer gets to decide for him as Ben rages his desperation for the lost memories resorting to attacking him to get them. While Peter refuses to hurt Ben, the latter notes the former's still recovering, as Ben doesn't believe Peter's want to help in spite of his emotional insistence that he does. As both Spider-Men fight each other, the Beyond Board approves Maxine's motion to liquidate the lower levels, despite their initial high hopes and starting "Project: Purgatory", voicing how Maxine's failure cost them. While Maxine speaks that the failure will test the efficacy of the program, the board order her death but she escapes with a hologram decoy-- reserved for the board. As Maxine takes her leave, she casts a veil threat about now seeing any of them for an exit interview.

Outside, Peter tries getting Ben to stop, but in his altered mindset does Ben spout that Peter hates him because he is new and tired of getting out of the way. Despite Peter's statements to not hating Ben, the latter's gear negates most of Peter's attack damage and restrains him with a Spinneret bot. An enraged Ben takes off the restrained Peter's mask, voicing he wants to help, while Ben questions why he has to make Peter help. As Janine and Marcus look for Maxine, they fond a monitor announcing a scrub in progress, for which Marcus elaborates it is a goo that confuses and rewrites matter to destroy evidence. With that detail and thinking about its effect on people, Janine refocuses the objective to finding Ben. As the PA system announces the scrub for Beyond employees, Ben notes that the Spinneret doesn't dissolve and was made to hold someone thrice Peter's strength.

However, Peter notes that the last time he was caught by the device, he took it apart after the time-up and located the unlock command in the root code. Stating it, Peter is free and shatters the helmet with a punch, sick of Ben's gadgets. In shock, Ben lashes out at Peter, seeing his loss of the memories as making him practically nothing, overwhelming and nearly murdering Peter. Ben only lets go once the platform they're on gives way and Ben falls, voicing to Peter that he has the parts that he was missing pieces he only wanted back. While Peter still screams he can help, Ben doesn't believe anyone can help him, accepting his death from the scrub goo. As a frantic Peter jumps in to try and save Ben, Marcus portals Peter to safety as the building collapses, with the public seeing the building lose altitude and lower into the ground.

Days later, Peter has his injuries from "a mugging" examined by a suspicious Dr. Burdick, but the doctor clears him with superficial harm permitting Peter to go home. While Aunt May demands to speak with the Billing Department about their "commentary" on Peter, Mary Jane comforts a crying Peter as he reels from not being able to save Ben, scared in his last moments. Thankful, Mary Jane turns to face Marcus to voice gratitude, who only found Peter with Janine's help as she ventured down to save Ben. Meanwhile, Janine combs the sewer system beneath Beyond Tower to find Ben, stepping in the psycho-reactive goo that washed him away and sees a dark reflection of herself. Hearing debris rumble, Janine is startled to find Ben survived, but horrified to see him damaged from the goo exposure.

Weeks later, Peter and Mary Jane return to her apartment after a jog to help with his physical recovery. She updates their planned jog for three miles starting Monday, affirming she talks with Nurse Lois to keep Peter honest about his activity. Thanking her, Peter is about to walk out the door before she tells him to stay, but after his joke about an orthopedic bed, she emphasizes he should stay and move in. Wowed by the offer, he notes that he's a mess at the moment but Mary Jane counters that he is always a mess, so she doesn't want to wait until he's not one. Laughing it off, Peter agrees with Mary Jane and accepts her offer, but is throw aback when she sees something out the window. As Peter turns to face it, a blinding figure noted how a road of blood led it to Peter, asking he come with it.

Ben becomes Chasm

Months later, Ben and Janine are living in a rotted out apartment as Ben struggles to cope with his loss of identity. Gripping with how she didn't leave him and he stayed for her, it may be all he knows now. But with the inability to identify himself in the mirror, even through his tainted mask, Ben has a meltdown unable to recognize his mask and crashes through the bathroom window. A startled Janine goes to check on him, only to find the room empty calling for Ben. Embraced by his madness, he goes atop the Empire State Building, finding "Ben" is gone, and where once he was, there was only a Chasm. His suit morphed into a nightmarish black, purple, and green render of his Spider-Man attire, emitting an almost liquid green glow.

Solicit Synopsis

• THE BIG FINALE OF "BEYOND"!!!

• SPIDER-MAN VS. SPIDER-MAN! You may surprise yourself with who you're rooting for.

• Don't miss the conclusion to one of the most surprising Spider-Stories of the past decade.

See Also

Links and References

References

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