Peter picks a train blindly, rides it to the end of the line. He doesn't tell Aunt May where he's going. He doesn't know himself. He transfers, transfers again, gets on a bus.
(It's better if Aunt May doesn't know, anyway. Having ties to him just makes people targets.)
When he checks into a shitty motel somewhere west of Scranton that takes cash without comment and doesn't require ID, he's still wearing the black suit from Gwen's funeral.
Do you have your suit? he remembers, her voice so clear it's like she's standing there, and he chokes laughter into tears.
He has time to kill, sitting in his motel room. He doesn't want to watch the news report on Spider-Man's disappearance and the mess he left behind, doesn't want to see fake police catch fake criminals in cases that wrap up neatly in 40 minutes or less. He watches the soothing chaos of the weather channel instead, lets the stock ticker scroll by, and starts to see patterns in the intersection of the two. Numbers always were his strong point. It's a relief to relearn that science can do more than wreak havoc.
It can pay his motel bill, too.
With the money, he reinvents himself. He buys new suits, the same sober cut as the one he's worn since leaving New York. (He's forgotten how to live without a uniform.) He looks for jobs.
Anything that would reveal his strength is out, and there's little else available when he lacks a high school diploma. He's afraid of the questions the local school system will ask. College seems strangely easier.
He picks a name, crafts an identity. Someone from outside the country, whose high school transcripts would be difficult to verify.
He's still shocked when the Harvard acceptance letter arrives.
Peter Parker was always an outcast, and so Eduardo Saverin isn't. He wears suits, talks with strangers, lets business jargon fall from his mouth. That's what it means to reinvent yourself: cut ties, leave nothing that connects the new identity to the old. (Secrets have a cost, he remembers, and forces himself to forget.)
But it's not that easy. He gravitates to the geeks, the nerds, those who speak his old language of science. It hurts to claim that he doesn't understand when he was once first (second) in his class. It's still better than not hearing it at all.
"I need the algorithm," Mark says, and Eduardo remembers another man, years ago: We need the decay-rate algorithm. He stops, swallows. Thinks about how things might have been different if he hadn't felt the need to prove himself, had left his father's notes hidden in the briefcase lining. But this is Mark, sitting in his hoodie and flip-flops, looking tired and drunk and normal and nothing like everything Eduardo left behind. There are no more super-villains in his life, only college pranks. How much could possibly go wrong?
"I need the algorithm," Mark repeats, and Eduardo gives it to him.