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Appearing in "Little Lies"

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Synopsis for "Little Lies"

Peter Parker manages to stop Mary Jane's Aunt Anna before she can empty the clothes dryer. Although this is to prevent her from discovering his Spider-Man costume, he manages -- through sheer luck -- to convince her that he forgot to run the dryer.[Continuity 1] When Mary Jane enters the laundry room to check on them, Anna decides to leave the couple to discuss Peter's share of the chores. This comes as a great relief to Peter, who reminds his wife that they really need to look into getting a place of their own. As they go up to their bedroom, Mary Jane reminds Peter that they can't afford a place on their own yet. When Peter suggests getting another job, she points out that Peter has a full plate already working for the Bugle, going back to school, and his duties as Spider-Man. She then complains how they are young and need to get out and do things.[Continuity 2] That's when Mary Jane tells Peter that they are going out with Jill Stacy that evening. Although Peter isn't comfortable with this, his wife convinces him to come, but can't dissuade him from wearing his Spider-Man costume on under his clothes.[Continuity 3]

Meanwhile, at the Stacy home, Paul Stacy sits in his bedroom ignoring the ringing telephone. That's when his father, Arthur, enters the room and -- knowing that it is Donovan Zane of the Friends of Humanity -- tells his son to answer the call and deal with him like a man. Instead, Paul hangs up the phone, much to his father's disappointment. Arthur cannot believe that his son would get involved with a bigoted group like the Friends of Humanity and tries to get his son to open up to him. Although his thoughts are on his late uncle and cousin, Paul tells his father that there is nothing he wants to talk about. When the phone begins to ring again, Paul picks it up and throws it out the window. However, Arthur knows exactly what is upsetting his son and tells him to let go of his obsessions. When Paul begins pointing out Arthur's hypocrisy on that note, they are interrupted when Jill enters the room. She tells Paul that they are going out and that they are going to be late. She then pulls her brother out of the room, leaving Arthur to silently reflect as the phone begins to ring again. Elsewhere, Donovan Zane hangs up the phone, disappointed that Paul Stacy hasn't worked out. When his minions ask if they should pay Stacy a visit, Zane orders them to stand down and begins calling in some outside help to deal with this issue. Later, Jill tries to get her brother to talk to him about what has been bothering him. He is surprised when she suggests that he always compared her to their cousin Jill, but asks her if they can talk about it later.

Soon, in a local bar, the Stacy's meet with the Parkers and neither Peter nor Paul are happy that they are in the presence of each other. However, both Mary Jane and Jill tell them both to be nice to each other. Peter's limits get tested when, a short time later, both Mary Jane and Jill go to the washroom leaving him alone with Paul. While the two women talk about the divide that has been growing between Paul and his father since the death of George and Gwen, Peter tries to get Paul to explain his animosity toward him. Paul doesn't want to talk to Parker about it but admits that he hates Peter for being able to spend more time with his uncle and cousin before their deaths. Peter tries to empathize with Paul's feelings of loss and insists that they can talk about it. Unfortunately, this offer falls on deaf ears and Paul storms out of the bar just as Mary Jane and Jill are returning from the washroom. However, Peter refuses to let this go and chases after Paul and continues to try and get him to open up. As he does so, Peter's spider-sense begins warning him of trouble. When he brings up Paul's involvement with the Friends of Humanity, this angers Paul who tells Peter to stop following him and leave him alone. His spider-sense still buzzing, Peter decides to ignore this warning. Slipping into an alley, Peter changes into Spider-Man so he can continue following Paul to make sure he isn't getting into more trouble.

Not far ahead, Paul Stacy continues walking, his mind searching for answers for all his conflicting emotions. That's when he is suddenly ambushed by the Shocker who has been hired by the Friends of Humanity to deal with him. Having had enough, Paul kneels to the ground and tells the Shocker to put him out of his misery. Unfortunately for the Shocker, Spider-Man interrupts just moments before he can eliminate Stacy. As Paul runs for it, the wall-crawler tags him with a spider-tracer so he can follow after him once he has dealt with the Shocker. This time, the web-slinger is looking forward to his rematch with the Shocker since he is no longer suffering from vertigo.[Continuity 4] With a crowd gathering -- including the Daily Bugle's Billy Walters -- the Shocker uses his vibrational gauntlets to rupture a gas main covering his escape while Spider-Man contains the danger. With the Shocker still on the loose, he ignores Billy's request for an interview so he can pick up Paul Stacy's trail.

Thankfully, Spider-Man manages to find Paul first, atop the Brooklyn Bridge. Thinking that Paul is going to commit suicide, the wall-crawler tries to talk him out of it. Hearing this, Paul hand't thought of that, but thinks there is some kind of sick symmetry to the idea. Deciding to see what kind of man the wall-crawler is, Paul begins walking toward the edge of the bridge. Realizing that Paul is actually going to try and jump, Spider-Man leaps at Paul in an attempt to stop him.


Continuity Notes

  1. Peter and Mary Jane are referred to as husband and wife here. However, years later, their marriage is erased from existence by Mephisto in Amazing Spider-Man #545. As such they should be considered a common-law couple here.
  2. Peter reminds Mary Jane how they recently attended a toga party at Empire State University. That was in Amazing Spider-Man #428.
  3. Peter is uncomfortable around Jill Stacy because he still feels a lot of guilt over the deaths of her uncle George and cousin Gwen. Both were killed during Spider-Man battles in Amazing Spider-Man #90 and 121 respectively.
  4. Spider-Man had been suffering from vertigo ever since he was bitten by Morbius the Living Vampire in Spider-Man #77. He encountered the Shocker while suffering from this condition in Spider-Man #83. The web-slinger was eventually cured of this condition last issue.

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