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5 Times Sam Thinks Peter Understands, and 1 Time He Knows He Does

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1. when the house tries to kill them, gets destroyed, and is then replaced with S.H.I.E.L.D.'s awesome (but creepy) exact replica

"I'm surprised you're not in there helping Aunt May kick Luke and Danny's butts." Sam startles a bit when he hears Peter's voice, and he looks up from where he is mixing ingredients in a bowl to see Peter leaning against the door frame that leads to the living room. "What are you doing that's so important you'll pass on video games?"

"Uhh..." Sam glances at the bowl and then over at the counter by the sink where his failed robot cake sits, somehow still smoking. He meets Peter's eyes and gives him a half smile. "I was going for take two on the cake?"

Peter's eyes widen in shock, and Sam wishes he had just stayed in the living room with everyone else. Ava sure isn't making attempts to fix her present yet, so why did Sam think he should? He's about to open his mouth, make some excuse, when Peter smiles at him. "Don't make the oven turn into a robot this time, and I think you'll be okay."

Sam snorts and rolls his eyes as he resumes stirring. "That was your fault anyway. I knew what I was doing; you were the one who made me mess up."

"Uh-huh, sure, Buckethead; just don't let that one burn, I'd actually like to be able to eat it this time."

He watches as Peter pushes off the frame and returns to the living room, and Sam wonders if he knows what he just did to his stomach. Instead of thinking too much about what Peter might have meant, whether there were undercurrents when Peter talks like when Sam does, he focuses on making the best damn cake he can.


2. when Sam almost dies in space and then says he is going to stay in space (but totally doesn't)

Sam is pretty sure that Peter is still mad at him for the whole 'oh I'm going back to the Guardians of the Galaxy, jk I'm staying with you guys!' thing he pulled last week. He keeps trying to apologize, but every time he approaches him about it, a villain pops up, S.H.I.E.L.D. interrupts, or Peter changes the subject. The last time he tried, Peter sighed and said, "I don't wanna hear about space today, Sam," and walked away.

He's pretty sure that Peter doesn't get what he's trying to do, and that in turn just frustrates Sam to the point where he's not sure he even wants to apologize anymore. For crying out loud, he wasn't even gone a day. No one else on the team seems too upset about it, but then again, none of them has had any reason to think Sam would be leaving the team. He tries talking to the others about it, but the most he gets is some weird fortune cookie saying from Danny, a "I don't know, man," and a shrug from Luke, and "Why don't you ask someone who cares?" from Ava. Sam almost wishes that MJ knew about their superhero aliases so that he could talk to her because he knows she'd listen and give him advice as the Ultimate Peter Parker Encyclopedia he's found her to be. It'd also just be nice to have someone give him actual feedback.

In the end, he finds himself talking to Aunt May during one of their new hobbies—this time it's painting. They're at Central Park and it's a Saturday, so there are enough people around making background noise that Sam doesn't feel too awkward in the lapse between his question and her answer.

"Peter is a good kid, Sam," begins Aunt May, her eyes sticking to the canvas she's working on. It's angled so that Sam can't see what it is. "He's sensitive about people leaving sometimes, as I'm sure you'd understand, but he'll come around eventually."

"Yeah, I get that, but how do I get him to come around now?" He has his paintbrush in his hand, but he hasn't figured out what to paint yet, too preoccupied with his problem.

Aunt May chuckles, pausing in her work to grin at Sam. "If you're so impatient to have him forgive you, then maybe you need to make sure you get heard."

"Okay, but how?"

She shrugs as she goes back to her painting. "Maybe if he won't let you finish talking, you should write him a note?"

"A note..." Sam eyes his blank canvas for another moment before beginning to cover it in black paint. As he works, he mentally composes what he wants to say to Peter in his head. It's not much, mostly a key emphasis on the 'I'm sorry' part, but by the time he's done thinking about it, Sam knows what to do.

Before they leave the park, Aunt May and Sam examine each other's paintings. Hers is of the park itself, the trees and the people and the buildings in the distance. His is of space, of the many galaxies and stars that can be seen with a single glimpse through a strong enough telescope. She pats him on the back, and gives him a look like she knows what he's going to do. It's weird, and it reminds Sam of his mom.

Later, Sam is laying on his bed in his room on the tricarrier, playing his handheld game when there's a knock at his door. He hasn't been expecting anyone, and there's an alarm that goes off when it's actually something important. Therefore, he's surprised when he opens it and it's Peter standing there looking awkward in his Spider-Man outfit minus the mask.


"H-Hey Sam," starts Peter, one hand scratching his head as he looked everywhere but at Sam, "Aunt May told me to come and thank you for the painting so I'm here. Thanking you. For the painting."

Sam swallows hard. He can't believe he forgot about that when he'd only left the finished painting and the note in Peter's room that morning before school. "Oh, uh y-you're welcome. I figured that since we, uh, fought with the Guardians together you'd appreciate it most."

"Yeah, I do, appreciate it that is." Peter stares at Sam for a while, and Sam can't help but stare right back. He feels like there's something inside Peter that isn't being said, but since it's the same for him, Sam doesn't push it. Eventually Peter grins as he glances down at his feet and says, "Anyway, I'm glad you're still here on Earth with S.H.I.E.L.D., with the team,"

There's a lull of silence between them as Sam attempts to piece words together at the same time he tries to take apart what Peter just said. Peter coughs, and Sam snaps to attention. "Oh, y-yeah; of course I'm here. There's nowhere else I'd rather be."

Peter grins at him, then gives him a salute and backs away. "Awesome, then I'll see you at school tomorrow or whenever we get the next villain alert!"

"Later, Parker."

After shutting the door, Sam leans against it, not sure if he's actually breathing properly. He's tempted to put on his helmet just to make sure he's not hallucinating.


3. when you just gotta relax with video games

A few times a week—bad guys and S.H.I.E.L.D. permitting—Sam goes over to Peter's to play video games. It originally started as some kind of group exercise, but slowly became something just him and Peter do. Sometimes Luke tags along and sometimes Danny tags along with Luke, but they don't ever get as into it as Sam and Peter. They more often end up leaving before Sam does to go train on the tricarrier or see what Ava is up to.

It's usually in the moments directly after their departure that things occasionally get weird between Sam and Peter, like the sudden leaving of their friends loosens something that is typically unspoken and they both feel like they should address it, but never do.

"See you losers later!" calls out Luke as the door shuts behind him and Danny, and both Sam and Peter just grunt in response as they're too busy trying to beat the crap out of each other in the game to verbalize a goodbye.

When the round is over and Sam shouts in victory, they then sit there quietly as the screen flashes at them, asking if they want to continue. Sam glances at Peter, who is still holding his controller and staring at it rather intently, and he wonders if maybe he did something wrong. This happens every time after someone else comes with Sam to play video games, and Sam has never been sure if it's because someone else came with him or if it's because Sam won again.

"Wanna go again?" asks Sam tentatively, using his own controller to gesture towards the tv.

Peter seems to shake himself out of whatever trance he'd worked himself into and nods as he hits start and says, "Sure, I think I can try and beat your ass a couple more times."

Sam smiles. "Try being the operative word."

That makes Peter roll his eyes, and Sam feels a little better about things. "Yeah, well, not all of us apparently have buckets of free time to spend on video games; some of us, oh, I don't know, have to go out and fight crime."

"Oh please, like I'd have to practice to whoop your butt?" Peter snorts, but doesn't come back with anything, opting to execute a couple of moves that Sam is pretty sure that Peter has never used before to take the first life of Sam's character. "Hey!"

"I never said I didn't practice." Sam huffs, but out of the corner of his eye, he sees Peter grinning, and that makes losing totally worth it.

Not worth it enough not to throw in, "Please, I let you win, Parker!"

"Uh-huh." He seems annoyed for a moment, but then Peter lifts up his controller and asks, "Best two out of three?"

"You're on!"

Sam totally ends up winning, even though Peter tries to call foul on part that his controller's batteries are starting to die. It's starting to get late, but that doesn't stop Peter from looking at Sam with a playful smile on his face. "Four out of five?"

He grins back, and this time it's Sam who presses start because he's not about to tell Peter that he could never say no to that face.


4. when movie night gets decided for Sam

Sam is beginning to regret talking to MJ whenever he feels lonely, but he can't help but connect with her when she makes him think that she's what Kaelynn will be like when she's older. He misses his little sister fiercely, so naturally he temporarily replaces her with MJ—who is a good enough friend to not let it bother her. He tells her about his family—she asks actually, the only person to ask besides S.H.I.E.L.D. since he came to New York City—and the other day during lunch he kind of accidentally tells her how he feels about Peter. The second the words leave his mouth, he knows he messed up because the grin that stretches over her face is positively terrifying.

When she calls him after a team training session a couple days later telling him that she's getting everyone together to see a movie that night, Sam plays it off like it's normal. He pretends to rub it in Peter's face a bit that MJ called him first, is appropriately disgusted at the idea of him dating her, and tries to sound off-hand that MJ would be inviting him too. He hopes it doesn't look like he's running away when he leaves Peter, but he has to get to his room before the fear that MJ is trying to set something up sinks in. The whistling helps keep him calm until he reaches his room, and then he's able to take off his helmet and take a deep breath. MJ is just inviting them all for a night out. It doesn't have to mean anything unless Sam tries to make it mean anything.

Except, that as Sam is getting dressed for the movie, MJ texts him saying 'You and Pete are gonna sit in between me and Harry, okay?' and suddenly it means a lot of different things, but most importantly that he shouldn't have told her.

It's too late for that though, and Sam focuses on not having sweaty palms as he finishes getting ready and makes his way to the theater with the rest of the team sans Peter. They meet up with Harry and MJ outside, the latter who immediately pulls Sam to the side and begins whispering her plans to him. He's grateful for her support and it's a little thrilling that she seems to think that it's not hopeless—that Peter could feel the same, but he still doesn't want to be talking about this when Peter can pop up at any moment.

"What are you two whispering about?" Sam feels sick to his stomach, and he rubs his hands on his pants before turning around to see Peter standing next to Harry and Danny.

"Nothing!" "Homework!" Sam winces at their conflicting answers while the rest of the group looks suspicious—all except Ava who smirks. He narrows his eyes at her, and she just smirks more widely at him. She's probably known longer than Sam himself has.

"Okay," Harry breaks the silence first, looking between Sam and MJ in confusion before carrying on, "Well the movie starts soon, so we should all head inside now."

"Agreed," adds Danny, who sends Sam a look he doesn't like—it's way too thoughtful.

Everyone follows their lead though, and Sam thinks he can maybe relax after they all buy their tickets. Then he remembers MJ's plan and he tenses again because while the idea of him and Peter sitting next to each other is harmless—they do it all the time—the fact that MJ deliberately set it up this way puts Sam on edge.

Luke and Danny lead the way into the theater, choosing a row in about the middle of the theater. Peter makes a move to sit by Danny, but MJ insists he sit by her. Sam holds his breath for a moment when Peter looks conflicted, but it must not have been the first time she has made the insistence because he caves easily. Harry sits next to Danny, while Sam and Peter sit in between him and MJ, with Ava sitting on the end. Peter doesn't even so much as glance at him as they sit down, and Sam thinks maybe he'll actually be able to pay attention to the movie.

He's pretty successful for most of the movie until Peter leans in to whisper a joke about the movie, and that pretty much shoots Sam's concentration to hell. He attempts to make jokes back, but his mind is too distracted by Peter's breath on his ear to think up quality puns. Peter laughs anyway though, which makes Sam feel better since he can't stop himself from laughing at most of what Peter says—some of them are just bad jokes, okay? They fall into some sort of rhythm, and Sam pays more attention to the movie so he can get what Peter's making fun of. When the movie starts its climax, Peter goes to lean in just as MJ decides to elbow him for talking, and he and Sam end up knocking heads. They stifle their groans of pain, but Sam can see Peter grinning at him by the light of the movie projector and it makes him grin back.

Over Peter's shoulder, Sam catches MJ's eyes and she winks at him, and Sam rolls his eyes at her, though the grin on his face belittles how much he means it. Because Peter is definitely sitting more closely to him now, and they're sharing the armrest between them as much as two people can without holding hands. For all that Sam has worried about tonight, it certainly could've gone a lot worse.


 5. when they talk on the roof (while they’re supposing to be on lookout)

The team takes shifts patrolling the city, allowing for short periods of free time between school, missions, and training. They usually pair off, occasionally going solo, depending on if someone had plans they couldn't excuse their way out of without raising too much suspicion. This Saturday afternoon finds Sam sitting with Peter on a rooftop in Manhattan, watching for crime. Their cover is that they're at Luke's playing video games, which Sam honestly wishes were true because waiting around on rooftops can get pretty boring.

"For the city that never sleeps, it sure seems awfully dull right now," gripes Peter from where he crouches on the ledge of the building.

Sam snorts. He’s sitting next to Peter because there’s no point in floating when nothing is going on. "You don't even know dull until you've skated around Carefree a couple times."

Peter looks over at Sam, "Carefree?"

"It's where I'm from, Webhead. You didn't think all of us were from New York City, did you?"

"Well, I mean, all you ever talk about is space, so I just sort of guessed..." He can't help it; Sam starts laughing. "Dude, don't laugh, how could I know?! It's not like you've ever mentioned anywhere besides New York and space before today!"

He's still laughing, but he nods as he clutches his sides. "I suppose you have a point, but I'm pretty sure my file says that I'm from Arizona."

"Dude, you're from Arizona?!" Sam raises an eyebrow at Peter and Peter shrugs. "What? I didn't read the file; I barely even skimmed it." There is a lull. "So Arizona?"

He rolls his eyes as Sam leans back, using the nova force to not fall off the ledge and onto the roof. "Yes, Arizona. I'm from a small ass town called Carefree where nothing interesting ever happens."

"Something had to have happened for you to get your powers."

"In a way, but not a fun kind of interesting." Sam can feel Peter's eyes on him, and for a moment he wishes he had a mask so that his face would be covered and shielded from Peter reading his emotions. "I didn't just find the helmet in the middle of the desert, Peter; it was on a shelf in my garage." He takes a deep breath, not sure why the next sentence is so hard to grind out. "It was my father's."

Silence, and then Peter asks, "Did he...?"

"I don't know." Sam slides off the ledge, standing next to it, and looks out over the city. Nothing seems to have gone down in the time they've focused more on talking than watching, and he knows he can't get out of this conversation that easily. "A...friend of mine told me he was still alive, but I don't know where he could be. I've been all over the universe, but I don't even know where to begin looking for him. Honestly, he's the biggest reason why I almost went back with the Guardians."

"Sam, I had no idea, I mean, if I'd known that you wanted to find your dad—I mean it makes sense to go with the Guardians. We'd all understand if you left."

"I know, and I would've explained eventually, but until I have a better idea of where he's going to be, I figured I'd stay here and help you guys. The Guardians were protecting the galaxy before I came along, and they can continue to do it without me."

Peter nods, and Sam thinks that maybe the conversation is over, that maybe a fire or something will pop up and they can go investigate. Instead, Peter starts, "Do you miss him?"

"Sometimes. Sometimes I wish he hadn't left and dumped all this stuff on me, but then I also see how I'm making life a little better for my mom and Kaelynn, better than when he had still be around and I don't know. He loved us, I never doubted that really, but he...he didn't know what to do with himself after the Nova Corps."

"You have a sister?"

"I say all that, and that's what you take out of it?"

"Everyone's got daddy issues, join the club, but I didn't peg you for a guy with a sister."

It grates on Sam's nerves slightly, but he also knows Peter has a valid point. The only person on their team who didn't have father issues of some kind is Luke, and he'd only just recently discovered what even happened to his parents. "Yeah, she's like, seven? Her name's Kaelynn. I go and visit her and mom on holidays when I have enough time off."

"That's awesome dude; I wish I could meet them."

Sam stares at the back of Peter's head, confused as a tingling sensation flitting over his skin. "You wanna meet them?"

Peter glances over his shoulder, meeting Sam's eyes when he notices how shocked he is. "Yeah of course, Buckethead; you've met my family, why wouldn't I want to meet yours?"

He stares at Sam for a bit—Sam feels like he's grinning at him—before going back to the skyline, and Sam can't stop staring because what the hell? "You want to meet my family."

"Yes, Sam, if I could I'd meet your family, but I don't know if I'll be in Arizona like ever and you aren't making it sound like they can visit NYC anytime soon." He turns to face Sam again, and Sam manages to shake himself and to close his mouth. "Why is this such a big deal for you, Sam?"

"I..." Sam cuts himself off, not sure if he wants to complete his train of thought, more than a little scared of what it implies about him. But Peter is still eyeing him, so Sam smiles awkwardly and finishes, "I haven't had many friends who would want to meet my family, so I guess...I guess it's a little new for me or something I don't know."

Neither of them say anything for awhile, and Sam thinks that maybe he shouldn't have said anything and he goes to take it back when there's an explosion from a few blocks over. Their eyes meet and an agreement is reached without words. They begin making their way over to the scene, Sam worrying about what Peter's thinking and Peter not saying anything.

The explosion turns out to be Batroc being his usual annoying self. Together they take him down fairly quickly, both of them firing quips back and forth like nothing awkward has passed between them minutes before. In fact, Sam begins to think that Peter's not going to mention it ever again, when after some S.H.I.E.L.D. agents take Batroc away and Peter pats Sam on the back and says, "By the way, dude, regardless of what's gone on in your past, you got us now."

Sam mentally stalls. "Uh, thanks, Webs."

"Anytime, Buckethead; catch you back at the tricarrier for debriefing with the Nickster!" Peter is off, slinging between buildings, before the words sink in and Sam shoots off towards the tricarrier himself.

If he flies around and takes a bit of a scenic route in order to give Peter a chance to beat him there, then he can only say that it also serves the purpose of giving him time to go over what was said between them that day.


1. when studying in a blanket/pillow fort

Sam honestly hadn't expected Peter to actually crawl into the fort with him, but there they are, sitting cross-legged with Sam's geometry textbook between them. He does need help with the subject—he's made Ds on the last two tests and Coulson's started threatening him with Ava as a tutor—so he figures that maybe conning Peter into helping him would be fun, at least better than being mocked by Ava. Sure, Peter seems to be frustrated that Sam hasn't grasped what are apparently basic concepts of the subject, but while he makes comments, he keeps going and Sam thinks he might actually be getting it.

However, there is only so much Sam can take in one day.

"Okay, dude, I'm mathed out."

Peter looks like he might argue with Sam closing the book, but he glances at his watch. "We have been at it for an hour or so."

"See? Even brainiacs like you can only take so much math!"

"I'm not—" Peter rolls his eyes and sighs, but he doesn't look annoyed and Sam calls that a win. "I guess I can be a bit of nerd sometimes."

Sam snorts. "Sometimes? Dude, you're like the supreme arach-nerd."

"Well, this 'supreme arach-nerd' just helped you understand the basics of geometry, so I feel like some thanks are in order and less name-calling."

Their eyes lock, and Sam wants nothing more than to lean in and kiss Peter—a thought that's been cropping up more and more in his mind the past few months. He doesn't though because while Peter has this grin on his face, Sam isn't sure that it's exactly an invitation. Instead Sam ducks his head and focuses on his hands. "Thanks, Peter."

"You're welcome, Sam." Silence. "Uh, now what?"

About twenty different things come to Sam's mind, but he doesn't voice any of them. "Um, we can play video games?"

Peter narrows his eyes. "Does the fort include the tv?"

Sam smirks, pleased that Peter accepts the fort now that he's inside it, and says, "No, but we can totally rearrange it so that it does."

"Then let's do it, dude!"

And so they do, and it's amazingly great to play video games from inside the fort. Sam keeps thinking that it's evening because the blankets make everything dimmer, and it makes him continuously check the time. Eventually Peter notices him obsessively checking his phone, and pauses the game.

"You have somewhere to be, Sam?"

"What? No, why would you think that?"

"Uh, because you keep checking the time like you do?"

"Oh, no, it's just dark so I keep thinking it's later than it is. Coulson's got this lame curfew for weekdays, and he said that the first one to break it has to do everyone's chores for two weeks."

"Sounds like Coulson; make sure you leave yourself enough time to help me take apart the fort because I'm not doing that by myself."

"Why not? It's your house."

Peter raises an eyebrow at him. "Dude, you're the one who put it together in my living room."

"Are we back to that again? I told you, the tricarrier doesn't have a lot of spare blankets and pillows, let alone the proper area to make a fort!"

"That is so not the point! Okay, we're taking the fort down now so that you don't lose track of time and jet off without helping me."

"But we just arranged it perfectly around the tv!"

"I know, but I'm not letting you stick me with the tear down. We can rebuild it on a day where you don't have a curfew or you spend the night or whatever."

Peter turns off the game console and tries to stand up to start dismantling the fort, but he trips over the geometry book—Sam knew he should've moved it when they expanded the fort to cover the tv—and he lands on Sam as the comforter Sam had stolen from his bed falls down over them. Their heads bang together a little, but after the shock of that, Sam realizes that Peter is in his lap.

"Uh..." Sam meets Peter's eyes, or where he thinks his eyes are considering the blanket falling around them makes things considerably darker. "Um, y-you okay?"

He nods—Sam feels the shifting of the blanket and strands of Peter’s hair brushing against his face. "Yeah...I'm...I'm fine. You?"

Sam wants to laugh, but it gets caught in his throat. "Y-You're the one that fell, dumbass."

Peter shifts, but in the process he knocks over more of the fort. He sighs and Sam has to think very hard about not focusing on how his breath just blew over his face. "I am starting to think I shouldn't move. Like ever."

That's both the same and the complete opposite of what Sam's thinking, but he says, "I can't move, so if we want out of the fort you have to do something, Parker." He mumbles something, and Sam sucks in a breath because Peter, if anything, moves closer. "Peter, what did you just say?"

"I...I said..." Peter huffs and their foreheads are touching now and he sees Peter's eyes in the dim light filtering in through the blankets. "I said, 'what if I don't want to move?' okay."

Sam isn't sure if he stops breathing or if time just halts for a few seconds. "...What?"

"I'm pretty sure you heard me, Sam; please don't make me repeat myself."

"But I'd really like you to say it again so I can make sure I'm not hallucinating." He can’t believe he just said that.

"Why would you be hallucinating?" At least Peter sounds amused, and maybe a tinge hopeful? Or maybe it's Sam's wishful thinking.

"The heat. Suffocating from blankets. I could've hit my head on a chair or the table—the floor. Anything really because there's no way this is happening."

"Does that mean you would like for it to continue happening?" Sam's stomach flips.

"Does that mean you would like for it to continue happening?" Peter snorts, and Sam wants to hit himself over the head for being an idiot.

"You're avoiding the question, Sam."

"Yes, I am."

"Answer the question, Sam."

Sam's mouth is dry and he's nervous, but Peter's hands are on his shoulders and that certainly feels encouraging. Stammering, he says, "Y-Yes."

Moving even closer—and now Sam is positive that Peter is messing with him—Peter asks, "Yes, what?"

"Damnit, Peter, you know what."

Suddenly Peter's face is close enough that Sam can see his eyes and the pleased gleam in them that makes Sam's chest tighten. "You're right, I think I do know."

Then they're kissing, and Sam's not sure how it's taken him so long to get to this point when clearly Peter has felt the same way all along. It's not a very long kiss, but it's nice and sweet and Sam very much wants to do it again.

"We should definitely do that again," mutters Sam, confident enough in the situation now to put his hands on Peter's thighs. Peter hums before he kisses Sam again, and Sam pushes up into it. He's about to ask if maybe Peter would like to get out of the fort and head up to his room when the front door opens and the two of them freeze instantly.

"Peter?" calls out Aunt May, and crap Sam totally has forgotten where they were and the likelihood of her coming home to them still in the fort.

"I-I'm right here, Aunt May," replies Peter, his breath ghosting over Sam's lips and wow this really is the most inopportune time to start getting a boner.

They hear her step forward, and Sam prays that she doesn't try to help them untangle the mess that Peter made when he tried to get up. "What are you doing in there, and why did you build a fort in the living room?"

Peter pinches Sam's neck and Sam jumps violently, glaring at Peter and pinches his thigh in return as he says, "Uh, actually it was me that built the fort, Aunt May, and Peter was helping me study geometry."

"Mmhmm." God does Sam hope she's not analyzing their outlines in the blanket too much because her tone sounds both amused and knowing which is the worst tone to get from Aunt May. "Next time it might be better to study with the tv off. Clean up after yourselves when you're done."

Her footsteps leave the room, and they both let out the breaths they'd been holding in.

"That was close, right?" Sam rubs small circles into Peter's thighs, particularly where he pinched him.

"Incredibly," whispers Peter back, his breath now hitting Sam's neck and Sam tenses a bit at that, which doesn't go unnoticed. "You still wanna do this, Sam?"

"Y-Yeah, I just didn't realize we'd keep going now that you're aunt is here."

"Dang, you're right." Peter sighs, resting his head on Sam's shoulder. "And it's not like we can pretend you're not here when she knows you're here."

Sam fishes his phone out of his pocket and checks the time—whether he abuses the temporary light to also see Peter's face is unimportant—and says, "You know, we could also go somewhere else. I have three hours before I need to be back at the tricarrier."

Peter taps his thoughts out on Sam's back for a moment. "Does your curfew get extended if there's a villain?"

Grinning, Sam replies, "I'm sure Coulson and Fury can make an exception if we bag them a bad guy."

"Awesome. Let's clean up the fort and then go on patrol." He murmurs the last word into Sam's ear, causing a shiver to run down his spine.

"Careful moving, Pete; wouldn't want you to fall on me again."

He gets a smack on the head for that, but it's followed by a brief kiss that completely negates the action. Peter carefully moves and together they extract themselves from the remains of the fort. The entire time they're folding blankets, gathering pillows, and putting furniture back, they're stealing glances and sometimes even kisses—but not after looking both ways for any sign of Aunt May. Every time Peter smiles at Sam, his stomach clenches and he can't believe this is actually—finally-—happening to him.

He also can't believe that he is this excited to go on patrol, but for once—being on a quiet rooftop with Peter is exactly the place he wants to be.