Summary: Peter Parker’s red-headed baby girl is a welcome addition to his family, her pesky past life . . . not so welcome.
Disclaimer: I own none of the characters or universes.
AN: This is an odd one, especially for me.
Peter Parker stood on the side of the building and breathed in the crisp air. He was so happy, he didn’t think he could contain it. His family had grown by one more little person. He practically hugged himself with glee. Maybe he should go back inside and hug MJ instead, or maybe little Ben. His son was just as happy as he was with his little sister.
Then his Spidy-sense started blaring. But it wasn’t the ‘immediate-danger-hey-stupid-look-up’ blare, it was more along the lines of . . .
“Hey Doc,” Peter turned around to face his ally. Doctor Strange stood –floated- there, his red cape swaying slightly in the wind. “It’s there a Hero’s Monthly Newsletter that someone forgot to give me a subscription to, or something? ‘Cause you’re the third superhero to stop by because of the new baby. Logan was the first and that was a surprise. It’s scary how good he is with kids. The baby’s already got him wrapped around her finger. My daughter’s probably going to be the only kid in school to have more costumed freaks’ phone numbers programmed into her cell than normal people. Logan said that if anyone came after my kids to call him first. Which is good because he didn’t get the name Wolverine by standing still, but it’s bad ‘cause all the boyfriends will be more scared of ‘Uncle Logan’ than of the girl’s own father but that will be okay ‘cause no boy’s going to try anything with my little girl with Logan breathing down his neck.”
“You have an unquiet spirit,” the Doctor intoned.
“Yeah, you’ve told me that before.”
“Your daughter will have your spirit.”
“Really?” Peter couldn’t help but to believe the Sorcerer Supreme.
“And your intelligence.”
“That’s great. But she’s definitely going to get her mother’s good looks. She looks just like MJ, with those green eyes and that red fluff on the top of her head. It’s a good thing Logan’s going to be hanging around, she’s going to need a guard dog.”
There was silence.
“So, Doc. Why’d you stop by? I thought you said that you were not going to sus out my personal life. Give me privacy and all that.”
“I heard the cry of my apprentice.”
Peter was greatly confused. “What do you mean ‘apprentice’? You’re not talking about my kids, are you? ‘Cause Ben’s got my powers. You should have seen MJ the first time Ben climbed all the way to the ceiling and hung there. I thought I was going to be in the doghouse for a month.”
“I speak of your daughter.”
“My daughter!” Peter yelped. “She’s just three weeks old. She can’t be your apprentice. Na-huh. You’re wrong. Go re-cast and try again.”
“The power within her is unmistakable. She will have the abilities of a Sorcerer Supreme. It is good that she was borne to you, Spiderman. You will give her upbringing she did not have last time.”
“Last time?” Peter asked reluctantly.
“In another dimension, the soul of your daughter was born. She destroyed that universe before she was twenty-five years old.”
“I knew she was a prodigy.”
The Doctor waited.
“But destroyed the universe? Maybe it was an accident.”
“It was intentional. She had not learned the lessons you and I will teach her.”
“What makes you so sure that it’ll be better this time around?” Peter challenged.
Doctor Strange smiled slightly. “You have a mantra that echoes in your brain. Sometimes it is at the very forefront of your thoughts, sometimes not, but it is always there.”
“With great power comes great responsibility.”
“Oh, that one.”
“Yes. You will teach that to your daughter, with your words and with your actions. That, Peter Parker, that and my mentoring will change your daughter’s future.”
Peter collapsed onto the ground. It was all too much to take in at once. “But she’s so little. Why did you tell me this?”
“You would have raised her correctly, Peter, but she needs my tutelage as well. She has much power and her training must start early.”
“Which means that you’re going to be hanging around a lot. Which means that I better warn MJ, and Ben, and Aunt May. Oh boy, this is going to be interesting.”
Silence again. This time Doctor Strange ended it.
“What is the name of my new apprentice?”
Peter laughed. “What? You can’t divine it for yourself?”
The Doctor waited.
“Her name’s Willow. Willow Parker.”
“An apt name. It is said that trees are incorruptible,” said the doctor.
“Well, tell that to Aunt May. She asked that we used the name. I think it would have been the name of her daughter if she and Uncle Ben ever had kids. She had that look in her eye and MJ and I couldn’t refuse her. You know, Aunt May is going to want to know what your favorite meal is. And she’s going to want advance warning for when you stop by around supper because everytime she’ll insist that you stay. She might even insist that you use a telephone instead of a spell. And if my daughter has my ‘unquiet’ spirit, she’s going to drive you absolutely batty . . .”