Given that it was one of the hottest summer's on record, Peter really should have seen it coming from a mile away.
His days were filled with going to school, meaning that he entered an air conditioned building in the morning before the sun was too far in the sky and left when it had been blazing down for hours, spending a little bit of time with Gwen, usually leaving the heat to slip into a café or something to cool down a bit, then heading home to have dinner with Aunt May, once again slipping into the blessed relief of A.C. And after dinner and doing a bit of homework, he'd slip out for his evening job as everyone's friendly neighborhood Spider-Man, meaning that he willingly abandoned the joys of central air in order to swing around in the New York summer heat in a costume comprised of ninety percent skintight spandex.
It was no wonder that he found himself shakily climbing in through his bedroom window one night towards the end of July and collapsing face-first onto his bed without bothering to remove any more than his mask. Peter was too wiped out and thirsty and hot to even try to remember if he'd locked his bedroom door, and by the time he even thought about it he was already half-asleep.
Therefore it was somewhat jarring to gradually wake up to find a cold compress on his head, a two liter bottle of water on his bedside table, and Aunt May slipping through the door with a tray containing a bowl and a glass of what looked to be juice.
"Finally awake, I see," May said with a small, relieved smile. "You nearly scared me to death when I walked in here to wake you up for school and found you like that. Peter Parker, what am I going to do with you?"
"Found me like...?" Peter asked as he sat up slightly, reaching up to grab the washcloth as it fell of his head. The glove still on his hand made him freeze abruptly, and a quick look down revealed that yep, he was still in his Spider-Man gear. "Um, look, I can explain-"
May huffed and set the tray down; the bowl was filled with cold water and upon a closer look the glass was probably filled with Gatorade. "Young man, I have raised you since you were four years old. I watched you tearing up and down these stairs like a little monkey for a good chunk of that. So please do me the courtesy of at least pretending that I would recognize my boy when I see him scaling buildings on the eleven o'clock news."
When it was put that way, he felt really stupid for thinking for one second that his aunt had been waiting up for him every night to make sure he picked up this or that small item that she'd called him about while he was out. It seemed kind of obvious now that Aunt May's phone calls were less we need this at home and more I'm calling to make sure you're okay.
"Sorry, Aunt May," he said a bit sheepishly, slipping off his gloves and setting them on the table.
May waved her hand dismissively. "Just don't pretend I'm an idiot and we'll put this behind us. However," she added, fixing her boy with a stern glare, "don't you know better than to run around in this kind of weather without hydrating? You're supposed to be smart, for God's sake!"
"I don't exactly have pockets in this," Peter quipped, shrinking back into his pillows as May failed to be amused by the comment.
"And you answer your phone often enough that I know you have your backpack on you," she retorted. "Is it that hard to throw a couple bottles of water in there along with your clothes? You were running a fever of nearly a hundred and five, Peter. That's nothing to shrug off, and I worry enough about you out there fighting the good fight. Just," she heaved a sigh, "please, for my sake, throw a bottle of Gatorade or something in there before you even think about going out this evening."
Peter blinked. "You mean you're not going to tell me I have to quit being a superhero?"
"Why would I ever do that?" May replied. "You're one of the best things this city's had in a long time, and you're doing so much good work. It would be selfish of me to demand you give up doing something you love."
The teen processed this for a moment before smiling slightly. "Thanks, Aunt May."
"No problem," she replied. "Now rewet that washcloth, drink your sport drink, and lay back down, young man. You still need to recover some before you even think about swinging from the Chrysler Building."