1964-08-23 - Coney Escapades
Summary: Pete and MJ go to Coney Island and meet up with Steph!
Related: If there are no related logs, put 'None', — please don't leave blank!
Theme Song: None
stephanie-brown mary-jane-watson peter 

Peter doesn't have a car. In fact, either does Aunt May. The subway is how he gets anywhere he can't walk (or swing) so that's where the pair of them are now on their way out to Coney Island. It's kind of awkward, not gonna lie. Just sitting there on there way out and away. "Have you been there before?" Peter asks, breaking the ice. Or trying to anyways.

Mary Jane shakes her head, not minding the subway since… well, that's how she gets everywhere anyway, when she's not hitching a ride with Gwen. "Not since I was a little kid, honestly… this was a great idea Peter." She gives him a warm smile, "How about you? Go there often?"

"Not since I was a kid either," Peter replies. As they near their stop, he does some inward mental calculations regarding his budget and some boundaries he has in his mind. He can swing this, right?

MJ nods, "Well, this should be a fun." She watches him curiously, and reaches down to give his hand a light squeeze, sensing he's nervous about something and trying to reassure the boy. After all, she doesn't bite!

The move seems to reassure the boy as the train comes to a stop. He squeezes it back quickly but then stands and makes his way to the door. He should let her go first, but he doesn't think to because she's his friend, too, and because he's 18 and a dweeb. The rest of the jaunt to Coney Island is pretty quick and once they arrive, Peter pulls out his wallet as they get into line. "So what do you want to do first? Rides? Games? Food?"

Mary Jane grins, "Well, maybe we should try some games first? Unless you were hungry? Because we can eat whenever. I just was thinking the rides would be more fun when it got darker." She tilts her head as Peter fishes for cash, and… well, she looks a little torn. On the one hand, she wants to help because she knows how his finances are, especially with his Aunt, but on the other hand she doesn't want to insult him in some weird way either.

Peter doesn't give her the chance as he pays right away. A moment later they're through the turnstiles and they're in. "Games would be great!" Peter exclaims. "Really, whatever you want to do. I owe you after last time." There are all sorts of games: There's the hammer pound that measures strengththrow the table tennis ball into the milk bottledarts to pop balloons. All sorts of things; whatever the lady wants.

MJ mmmms to herself, then looks over at Peter, "Well, let's… oh, the tennis ball game!" She grins at Peter, "Unless you wanted to try your strength at the Hammer? I believe in you." Because heck, she saw him carry stuff and not look winded, so she knows he's stronger than he might look.

"Well, then," Peter says with a laugh, "I guess I sort of have to do the strength hammer, now." He leads the redhead off towards a tall contraption. There's a pad at the bottom where the hammer hits, and then a metal ring flies up a meter. If the ring gets to the very top, hitting the bell, you win. Pretty simple, right. "Did you want to try, too?" Peter asks.

Mary Jane grins, "Oh no… I don't think I could get that above 'weakling'. But you, I know you can do it." And then she gives him that look, because despite all the craziness and the misses on social stuff, well, she does believe in Peter, giving him a wider smile, "Come on tiger, show me what you got."

Peter takes out some more money and pays the man who stands at the ready. The hammer is given over to the hazel eyed bow who grips it with one hand and breathes steadily. He reaches back and smacks the hammer down, but the ring only makes it about halfway.

There's a momentary frustration until Peter's eyes begin to realize how it works. There's a switch by the money taker's foot and that's how they get people to do it a bunch of times. This makes Peter mad. "One more try," he says, digging for more cash.

MJ blinks a little in surprise, and does a bit of mental calculating herself as… well, there's no way that thing shouldn't have reached the top. But when Peter goes to try again, she still gives him a grin, "You got this."

Peter makes an angry face and puts all of his spider-oomf into the shot. The attendant's face goes all shocky-surprised as the lock that he has on, preventing Peter from winning goes flying and sliding across the pavement while the metal shoots up and rings the bell.

Clearly frustrated, the attendant looks aghast. He hands over a large teddy bear.

Mary Jane laughs and actually jumps up and down a bit, "Peter, that was amazing!" Even as the attendant hands him the bear, she engulfs him in a fierce hug, then actually kisses his cheek as she looks really impressed. Then she grins back at the attendant, having seen that lock on the gauge go flying before shouting, "HEY EVERYONE SHOULD REALLY TEST THEIR MIGHT NOW!"

And just like that, there's a growing crowd around the machine, having heard the bell *DING* and many other folks wanting to try their luck. And MJ is more than happy to give the attendant the business, now that the lock to rig it is off.

Peter's smile is a hundred watts, that's for sure. "Come on, let's go see what's next," he says. He knows he probably broke that machine, but it's a rigged machine anyways. The Attendant isn't happy, but he couldn't care less. Power to the little guy, right? He might be getting ahead of himself.

MJ links her arm in Peter's, and grins, "Well, I don't want to get too greedy with giant stuffed animals, otherwise I'll have to use the bear in place of a bed!" She tilts her head at him, "Maybe we can get some dogs, since defeating cheating carnies has to build up an appetite, am I right?" Though, she's impressed enough with Peter she doesn't ask the obvious question of how he managed enough force to break the lock…

The thing about places like Coney Island is this: they cost money. Generally, money is not a thing that Stephanie Brown has, for a lot of reasons. Last night, however, she managed to bring down a mugger who'd stolen a bunch of jewelry off a very wealthy lady. When she returned the items, she was offered money — and the lady would not take no for an answer.

And Steph feels guilty. She would not make a regular thing of this. But she kind of needed the cash.

So she's actually at Coney Island, strolling along with a pink cone of cotton candy in one hand, eying the carnival games. When she hears the bell ring on the high striker she glances over, only to spy Peter and Mary Jane at play. She pauses a moment, debating whether she should go say hello — are they on a date? They could be on a date. But ultimately she decides that if they want her gone, they'll make it clear, one way or another. And so she hurries her pace, making her way over to join them. "Hey, guys," she says cheerfully, waving her cotton candy.

He just hit it in just the right spot, right? Just a perfect shot. Nothing untoward or anything. "Food sounds pretty good," Peter says with a smile and a nod. And then he sees Steph and his eyes light up. Sure, they're on a date, and sure it was going well, but the truth is that he has been really lonely the last month at NYU before the students got there and he's elated to be spending time with MJ and to now see Stephanie.

"Hey!" He approaches to give her a hug, assuming she'll let him. "Awesome seeing you here!"

Mary Jane grins at Stephanie, looking happy to see her here too, "Hey Steph!" She hugs Stephanie as soon as Peter is done, giving her a warm smile, "It's great to see you! How's it been going?" Once all the hugging is done, she stands next to Peter, "We were just about to get some food, if you wanted to join us?"

Stephanie is not, admittedly, much of a hugger, but she accepts the embraces with grace, patting each back lightly in turn so it doesn't seem awkward except in her head. "Good to see you both," she agrees. "Things have been pretty dull this summer. But hey, school's starting. College should liven things up." She glances briefly at her cotton candy, then shrugs and nods. "Why not. I can handle more junk food."

"Come on, let's go get a dog," Peter says, announcing his approval and leading the pair of ladies to the hot dog stand. Peter pulls out his wallet once again, emboldened by the major victory of the teddy bear. "What does everyone like?" he asks out, before getting more specific. "Steph, where are you going? I don't think I ever found out what your post high school plans were."

Mary Jane grins, "Please say you're going to NYU, I need a neighbor in the dorm!" She looks at Peter, and smiles, "I'll just take a Coney dog, and a Coke." Since Peter is getting out his wallet for the food, she relieves him of the Giant Bear of Doom. "Wow, I hope I can fit this into the dorm, Pete."

"Unbelievably, I got in," Steph says, nodding to MJ. "Even more unbelievably, I got almost a full ride, so I can actually go. And that's not something dad can sell, so I don't have to worry about it mysteriously vanishing." Stephanie's expression goes dark at this last, but she pushes it aside after a moment or two, returning to Peter's question. "You have to do the traditional Coney, don't you? Without the onions, but otherwise…"

Peter nods as he gets the order and shells out some cashe. When he returns with the food and drinks he picks a spot at a picnic table for them to chill. "Hey, how's that going, by the way—Steph?" Peter tilts his head toward her, "With your dad, I mean."

MJ nods over Steph, "Well, the scholarship is great news." She takes her food from Peter, smiling as she sits next to him at the table, looking over at Stephanie, "And yeah, how is that going?" Her head tilts a bit as she gives Steph a concerned look. Because Steph's a friend and she worries.

Steph's nose wrinkles. "Let's just say that I am going to be living in a dorm and eating cafeteria food, and I am ecstatic about these things." Even if she doesn't seem ecstatic at the moment. That's just Stephanie's somewhat dry nature. She glances at the others. "Hey, don't worry about me. I'm gonna be fine! I'm just glad to get out of there." She snorts. "And dad's got problems right now. Somebody's picking on his gang. Poor things."

Peter gives a nod, "It sounds like things are looking up then." He takes a big bite from the hot dog, chews, takes a sip of soda, and all that good stuff. "What about NYU? What are you hoping to study?"

Mary Jane smiles, "Well, at least I won't be eating cafeteria food alone then. If you're in the same dorm as me, we're definitely gonna have to get together for study." She glances between Peter and Stephanie, then takes a bite from her hot dog, mmming a bit as it just tastes perfect.

"Criminal justice and law is my plan," Steph replies as she takes her Coney dog and picks off a single cube of onion that fell onto it. There's always one. "I'll happily study with you, MJ. I'm sure I'm going to need plenty of study time. Not enough hours in the day," she adds right before taking a bite of her own hot dog. Pretty good — but Coney Island is known for these, after all.

Criminal justice. The idea of Steph being a cop and chasing after him flashes before his eyes. Oh man, that'd be terrible. Still, it was an honorable choice and something Steph would be pretty good at. "That's a pretty good fit," Peter says with a pep. Maybe she'll be a lawyer. The DA. Maybe she'll put him behind bars. "Cop or lawyer?" he asks. Maybe for self serving reasons.

MJ nods over at Steph, "Sounds pretty cool… I'm still waffling between physics and theater." She grins, "And I think Gwen wants me to get a music minor anyway, since we're thinking of getting a band together." She looks a bit sheepish at that, then looks curiously at Peter.

"Honestly, I haven't decided yet," Steph says between bites of hot dog. Been too long since she had a Coney. "I'm going to try both and decide what fits me best. Somebody needs to put dad away. If the cops in Queens aren't going to do it, I'll have to." A shrug. It is what it is. She doesn't seem too worried about it. Steph decided her dad needed to go away a long time ago. "You're a great actress, MJ, but that doesn't mean you can't be a great scientist, too." She pauses a moment before noting, "Probably more jobs in physics." Steph's history has led her to consider these things from a practical angle.

"She is, isn't she?" Peter says as he finishes his dog. "I can't believe that college is about to start. It's crazy." He sips at his soda, "What do you guys want to do next?"

Mary Jane hmms, "Well, I think we defeated the evil scam artist and struck a blow for gamers everywhere… we got dinner, so rides?" She grins, "We could do the Tilt-A-Whirl? That can fit three in a car?"

She looks at Steph, "Geez, you sound like my dad. But I don't want to just blow everything up, and that's what it feels like applied physics does." She wrinkles her nose in distaste at the idea.

"I'm just saying. You can keep your options open. I'd love to see you on the stage, MJ. Whether singing or acting. But take physics too. You're brilliant. No need to choose one or the other. That's what double majors are for, right?" The blonde pauses for a moment, studying Mary Jane. "Unless physics is really that distasteful to you."

Steph glances at Peter, then at MJ. "I can do the tilt-a-whirl if you guys want to. I don't really have anything planned. Just had some money tonight and figured… this was as good a place to spend it as any."

"Hey, let's not rip on physics too much. If engineering doesn't work out, that's where I'm headed next," Peter says in reply. He nods vigorously at the idea of the tilt-a-whirl. "I think that's a good idea. The rides are probably the best part."

Mary Jane grins, "Nah, it isn't distasteful, I mean… I just worry about what it's used for. But I guess it can be used for other things…" She looks thoughtful, then glances at Peter, "Let's do the Tilt-A-Whirl then, we can do other rides later." She picks up the Bear of DOOM, staggering a bit comically under its mass, then smiles, "Lead on, Peter."

"To the Tilt-A-Whirl!" Stephanie shouts, raising one hand in the air, pointing skyward, leaping up from her seat. She pauses a moment, then, having absolutely no idea where the Tilt-A-Whirl is. "MJ, do you need a hand with Ursa Major there?"

Peter leads on and it's not too far. You can follow the screams of fun and fright down the way and up around the bend and there it is. The circular and nausea inducing circular tracks are in mid ride. Lucky for the trio there is absolutely no line, so they'll be able to head in next. As they get into line, the attendant offers to hold the stuffed animal. Clearly he doesn't know about Peter's treachery from earlier.

MJ grins, "I got it! Well, he has it." She smiles brightly at the attendant, "Thank you so much. You're a treasure." And she then bounces in for the Tilt-A-Whirl, taking one end of the car, so that Steph can have the other and Peter the middle. And then get ready to pull some Gs!

Steph settles in at her end of the car, but lets Peter get in first. "You know," she observes to Peter, "there are people with whom we went to high school who would never believe Peter Parker is sitting in a Tilt-A-Whirl car between two cheerleaders." She winks across him at MJ. "I'll let you two get back to your date after this. Promise."

"There are a lot of things people in high school wouldn't believe about me," Peter says, still cloud-high. He settles in and once everyone is ready, he pulls down the white, paint-chipped bar early as a sign of intent. He's riding very high. This sort of thing usually ends up badly for him.

Mary Jane grins, "It's cool Stephanie, I don't see you often enough anyway." She blinks, and then the Tilt-A-Whirl starts spinning, causing her to press into Peter as she squeals out a loud, "WHEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE!"

Stephanie is somewhat more reserved, but still smiling. She doesn't shriek, but reaches out to give MJ's hand a brief squeeze of appreciation. She leans into her corner of the car as it starts to spin, closing her eyes and enjoying the wind and the sensation of growing heavier — in a radial direction, at least.

Peter feels…kind of sick. As the ride passes by he's lucky to not hork all over his friends and decides, immediately, that he should never eat and twirl again. Mercifully, the ride is short (much to the chagrin of some of the younger folks). As it opens, Peter shuffles out. You'd think as much spinning as he does high up this wouldn't be a problem.

MJ gets Ursa Major back from the attendant with a smile, then hustles quickly to Peter, putting an arm around him, "Oh, Peter, are you okay?" She sounds genuinely concerned, not thinking that he'd be feeling nauseous from the spinning. Then she smiles over at Stephanie, "Hey, it was great to see you again. Don't be a stranger on campus, okay?"

"You won't be able to lose me," Steph assures MJ. "Peter, feel better. Maybe the Tilt-A-Whirl's not your ride." She leaves them to their date — though at a glance it looks as though the date may be over — and heads off back toward the games. She suspects she can win herself a prize if she tries. She's been practicing throwing darts, after all.

A couple of hours later it's time to go home. Peter and MJ seem to have had a good time aside from errors like the first time he tried to hit the hammer or when he almost ralphed on the Tilt A Whirl. As they both walk languidly toward the subway, Peter reaches into his wallet. It's one of those two pocketed ones to separate stuff out. The first lip is empty. He prepared for that. But as he goes to the second section, the money he was saving for their subway fare his eyes go wide. "Oh no."

"MJ, how comfortable are those shoes?"

"I thought I had enough money to get us back. I don't."

Mary Jane blinks, "But, Peter, our poor little child Ursa Major can't walk that far all by his lonesome." She then lifts the bear in front of her, and says in a squeaky voice meant to be the 'bear', "Papa, my paws would be burned on the pavement in the summer!"

MJ then smiles and looks between the bear, and Peter, and tilts her head, "Peter, it's great that you paid for so much tonight. The least I can do is get us back to campus. Really." She leans in and gives him another kiss on the cheek, "Don't get suckered into silly ideas of masculinity, tiger. Now come on, I'll cover the subway." And she'll probably sleight of hand a few bucks back to Peter, because despite all the social interruptus… she likes him a lot.

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