Spider-Friends Vs. Big Wheel!

Summary:
July 11, 2014: Spider-Man gets a little help from some old friends!

Midtown Manhattan - New York City

Situated between 14th and 59th Streets, Midtown Manhattan is the tourist destination in New York City. It is also the largest central business district in America. Most of the tallest skyscrapers in the city can be found here, from the Empire State and Chrysler Buildings to Stark Tower and the Baxter Building. It's also home to Times Square, Broadway, and Fifth Avenue.

In the day, the traffic is non-stop. In the evening, bright neon lights light up the street such that it looks as if the sun simply doesn't set on the city. But, then, there's a reason New York is called The City that Never Sleeps. This, right here, is it.


Characters

NPCs

  • Big Wheel

Mood Music:
Aerosmith:Spider-Man Theme


Midtown Manhattan is in a shambles. Gone are the crowds of people going about their daily business, replaced instead with police barricades and a throng of curious onlookers. Try as the boys in blue might to move them on, even jaded New Yorkers cannot help but stop and stare at the empty street that has been cordoned off for a block in every direction. The road itself is covered in the detritus of cracked pavement and, oddly enough, cars crushed flat in the middle. Soon enough it becomes clear why.

"I've gotta say, this is the most ridiculous gimmick I've ever seen and one of my baddies is an octogenarian in a bird suit!"

Rolling noisily around the corner is a giant wheel, five feet wide and almost twenty tall. From the side of it jut two cannons of some description, firing bursts of energy almost indiscriminately at the street in front of it. The tread of the wheel is a sort of plexiglass, revealing a man in a green crash helmet sitting at a set of controls. He doesn't move as the wheel rolls along, Spider-Man running at speed on top of it to avoid being drawn down underneath.

Spider-Man vs Big Wheel

~

"Flame on!" The trail of fire leading off the top of the Baxter Building is quickly enough lost in the turbulent winds that spring up around the tops of the skyscrapers, and Johnny Storm, Human Torch, is headed over to Midtown, because it's comics day! But wait, there's a really ridiculous looking … what the f… (An image of Sue Storm appears in Johnny's head like a scolding video image pasted by a guilty conscience, saying, "Use your grownup-company words, Johnny!") (He even answers it, "Sorry, Flashback Memory of Sue. Man, I really AM missing you guys. Head in the game, Johnny!") what on earth IS that thing, it looks like really bad toy design!

He flies down alongside, "Hey, Spidey! Need a hand?"

~

Bobby had just been walking down the street when. Oh hell! Wheel. Guns. Chaos. And… a fire guy? And… woah! Is that Spider Man! Freakin' awesome. That voice… sounds familiar. He starts to run toward the trouble before he's really put any thought into it.

"Hey! Up there? Need a hand?"

He's not even sure remotely what he'll do yet but… someone's gotta do something. Maybe tell the guy to let it go? Nah. How often does that work?

~

"Naw, just thought I'd take the old giant death wheel out for a spin," Spidey waves a hand dismissively at the Torch and Bobby - still running on the spot and breathing heavily as he glances down to yell at the wheel below, "Hey, Wheely! The Human Torch and Iceman1 are here! Feel like slowing down a smidge?"

- You can't stop me, Spider-Man! - buzzes Big Wheel's voice through a loud speaker built into the machine, - I'll grind you down beneath my treads! -

Spidey glances sidelong at Johnny and shrugs his shoulders. The moment of distraction, however, causes him to lose his footing for just a second. It's enough, though, and he falls flat onto his face before being dragged underneath the Wheel and emerging pressed a couple inches into the street behind it.

"Ow."

~

"HEY!" Johnny yells at the driver, "you jerk, you just drove over someone I was TALKING to."

He begins firing flame-bolts at the ground in front of the wheel, making hot spots to melt the rubber of the tire, and throws one or two in the direction of the driver, ducking as one of the cannons shoots a blast at him.

"Hey! Watch it!"

~

Bobby ices the road but - yikes that just ran over Spider Man! And he's… not a red smear on the road. Whew. Well the icing doesn't seem to stop it from gaining traction. Damn spikes. He switches tactics, holding a hand out to ice the joints that articulate the cannon. Maybe if he can't stop this thing he can at least keep it from aiming those damn guns at the Human Torch. Who the hell built this hampster ball of doom anyway?!

"Uh, Flame-Guy? Any ideas about how to stop this thing?

~

The Wheel's cannons freeze in place, struggling against the ice that now encase them. The melted rubber solidifies as it rolls over the ice on the road, prompting Big Wheel to pick up speed and roll away faster towards the corner. Spidey climbs to his feet, shaking it off and immediately running after the giant contraption.

"Hey, fire and ice," he calls back to Johnny and Bobby, "Freeze up the wheel and melt the road."

That said, he fires off a web line and gives chase.

~

The Torch shakes his head. That voice, from the ice guy. It's like a flashback to … shop class, the smell of arc welding, the clang of someone trying to use a hammer to loosen a stuck spark plug and missing, hitting their thumb, cursing. The smell of cigarettes out in the passage between the class and the gym building. Football team running by, "DRAKE! Get your ass in gear!" "Yeah, Coach, coming."

Storm looks down and says, "HEY! It's you!" to Bobby.

Spidey's voice brings him back to the present, and he flies ahead, making a firewall 20 yards in front of the wheel and heating up the road so it'll bog things down.

~

Bobby looks up sharply.

"I, oh! That's Johnny Storm! Hey Johnny! Just one sec here! Got a while to ice off!"

Giving up on the road and listening to the man in tights, Bobby turns and jabs his hand out, aiming for the wheel itself. Hoarfrost forms. Then rime. Then just sheets of ice creeping up the while and locking the mechanisms that drive it.

~

Their combined efforts prove more than Big Wheel can stand up to. The wheels joints and circuitry freeze, causing it to roll slowly into the now bubbling mire of the road. The last of its momentum is sapped by a line of web shot across the street in front of it. Unable to keep moving, it falls over onto its side and half-sinks into the melted tarmac. Satisfied, Spidey lands on the side and reaches down. Showing off the kind of strength that a skinny guy in tights should not possess, he tears the side open and yanks the driver free.

"Tsk tsk tsk," he says with a shake of his head, "Do you know how much it stings to get run over by a giant wheel? A lot."

~

The Torch hovers nearby, arms crossed, mockery engaged.

"Really, what were you thinking? Big Wheel? You're gonna be so buried in lawsuits, Kenner's going to come after you with every shark in the legal pool."

He waves when Bobby gets closer, landing and turning off the flames, leaving him standing in the red version of the blue FF one-piece that Reed designed, and Sue made MUCH less stupid-looking before it was finished.

~

Bobby laughs as he gets closer, the whole thing much less worrying now that the Hampster Wheel of Doom is out of commission. Just for good measure he refreezes some of the asphalt. The wheel can be stuck there for a while. He's in civilian clothes, just slacks and a button down, looking toussled as he usually does.

"Johnny Storm. Wow. You look like you're doing well for yourself."

He glances over to the man in tights who got run over. "You knoww the guy with the sweet haloween outfit?"

~

"Hey, someone who doesn't know Spider-Man," says Spidey as he hands a webbed-up Big Wheel over to a wary-looking police officer.

"Was it dark under the rock on Mars that you've been living under?"

~

Johnny laughs at that. "Spidey's been clogging up the skyline with webs for a couple years now, I think."

He signs something for the cop, 'to Tricia, best wishes, Human torch,' and walks over to Drake.

"How you been, where you been, and when did you get the cool ice powers?"

~

"I've been off at UCLA getting my degree, and oh, about three years ago," Bobby says chuckling at the autograph for the cop, motioning to Johnny as he walks over to Spidey.

"Spider Man huh? Yeah, it was dark. And sort of claustrophobic, and the internet connection sucks. Sorry, we didn't get much news of you back on the other coast, Spidey."

~

"Well, that settles that. I'm moving to Hollywood to make it big," Spider-Man answers, pausing and planting his hands on his hips to look at the pair.

~

"Three years ago? That's about when I got mine," Johnny says, and squints at Spidey.

"Dude, you're way too skinny for Hollywood. They'd probably have someone CGI you up to look like some kind of gymnast or something. Besides, the Bugle would pan all your movies."

~

Bobby laughs.

"Movies weren't really my thing anywway. I was down in Santa Monica. Anyway, I yeah, three years ago. Big to do. All my friends tried to lynch me."

The smile's a bit brittle for a moment.

"But I'm here now and absolutely the coolest dude you know," he says with a wink and offers his hand to Spider Man.

"Hey there. Bobby Drake."

~

"Captain America," Spidey answers, reaching out and shaking Bobby's hand as he returns the introduction. "I was in World War II. You might've heard about it. It was in all the newspapers."

~

"Oh come on, Spidey," Johnny says. "You're also WAY too short for Captain America, I know the guy."

Pause.

"Well. Met him once. Gang fight. Turns out smokescreens can make it hard to kill people, who'd've thought? Anyway. Lynch? Geez. I had some guys hassle me once or twice, but nobody went that far."

~

"Remember my home town Johnny? So small I had to get bussed in to your school? Yeah, bit of a backwards place," Bobby laughs.

"Heh. You and Petey. Those were good days. Smart Kid. I wonder whatever happened to him. Bet he did okay. Probably some Tony Stark kinda guy now. You seem to have made out alright too, as I was saying. Autographs for cops?"

~

"Hey guys, uhm. Don't look now, but the papparazzi are starting to show. Want to get away from here? I have cold brew and pizza up in the Baxter Building and nobody but me and Herbie are there, it's boring," Johnny says. He steps away from the Big Wheel, so the blast from flaming on won't make things more unstable.

~

For whatever reason, Spidey appears more than a little awkward about the conversation. He shuffles from foot to foot, glancing over as the photographers start to show up. His brow furrows behind his mask and he shakes his head at the question.

"Sounds great but I'll have to make it another time, Johnny. Got spider-stuff to do, y'know?"

~

Bobby chuckles and just steps out of the way. He isn't in costume after all. What are the odds anyone's gonna want pics of him?

"Sure thing Johnny. well, if you can get away from your public, that is," he says with a grin. Johnny always did like the bright lights.

~

"You sure? If it's just because of Herbie, we could go somewhere else," the Torch says.

"Oh, right, the mask. Can't eat pizza through the… wait, you don't, like, dissolve your food and eat it with a straw? Because that would be totally disgusting and I'd have to invite you over when Ben's home so we can gross him out."

~

"I'm actually a form of plant," Spider-Man admits, glancing upwards as a police chopper hovers into view.

"I use photosynthesis. Mm-mm. Delicious sunlight."

Then, he lifts an arm and launches a web line. As it hooks onto the bottom of the chopper, he lifts into the air a few feet and let's go to grant himself some momentum.

That was weird, he thinks to himself as he takes to the Manhattan skyline, Like a weird high school reunion.

~

Bobby doesn't know who Ben is, he's guessing a college friend, though he must be fun to taunt because before it used to be 'gross Sue out'.

"Who's Herbie now, Johnny?" he asks as he looks oddly at Spider Man. Man, that voice sounds familiar. Aaaaaand then he's gone. Bye, tights man! See you… sometime.

He turns back to Johnny.

"He always like that?"

~

"OK, see ya round, Spidey," Johnny calls out. He turns back to his highschool friend.

"Herbie is Reed's robot butler, and yeah, Spidey doesn't stick around much. I think it's because the Bugle has the cops all paranoid about him. They gave the FF a hard time too, but then Sue created the Four Freedoms Foundation and the whole 'inventions to save lives and make life better' thing, they couldn't keep it up without looking like jerks."

He looks at the papparazzi, and shrugs. "Sorry, guys, fun's over," and Bobby might notice that the Torch is doing something rather weird with heat - he's making a barrier between him and Bobby and several other people, and the people with cameras, that distorts the air and makes the pictures come out really blurry.

~

Bobby smiles and takes the opportunity to step decidedly away and move out of the crowd. Now that he knows that yes, it is that Johnny Storm, he'll be able to call and thank him. He's not a face in the papers kind of guy, really and he appreciates his old buddy looking out for him there. Doesn't take long before he's lost the scene and the crowd who all have more interesting things to take pictures of.

~

Johnny waits a moment, explaining that Spidey was really the one who stopped Big Wheel, he just helped him a bit, and then before too many questions can be asked, he flames on and flies home. No comics today.


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