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A Devil Where An Angel Used to Be

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Intro: Where’s My Happy Ending

 

~'^'~

People always put things off.

"In a minute." "Later." "I'll do it tomorrow."

But does that apply to our loved ones?

How long before they go?

 

Tick tock tick tock

Time passes by

Tick tock tick tock

Soon, we'll have to say 'Bye'

 

The friends who were closest to us,

The ones who were always by our side

We promised to have a future

But suddenly, they became the reason we cried.

 

Weeks passed.

Time slowed to a stop.

The thought of them not being here

Made our hearts drop.

 

Though it seemed to pass

And life went on

Today we still wonder

Why were they the ones who were gone?

 

Tick tock tick tock

Time passes by

Tick tock tick tock

Soon, we'll have to say 'Bye'

 

Time is a cruel mistress.

It devours and wrecks.

Will you forge on

Or will you be next?

~'^'~

"You see, Mr. Stark, that after that Giant Purple Menace(TM) freaking sister snapped all of my family out of existence, I yeeted to Peter's dimension and decided to help him while he was having an existential crisis after some fishbowl wearing freak ruined his life. Peter said 'this bitch empty, YEET' to his previous life and joined me. That's what happened."

~'^'~

"I'm literally losing brain cells here, Parker. Help a girl out."

"I was under the impression that we only had one brain cell?"

"We did."

"And currently we have none. Zero, negative, zilch, nada, nothing..."

"What a shame~" 

"Shut Up, Arse..."

~'^'~

 

{Title from the Song: Queen of Mean- Sarah Jeffery (From "Descendants 3")}

Chapter Text

 

LINK TO ART (Portrait of Vaani!!)


 

Chapter 1: "Find the Color in the Black and White"

 

“We really doing this?” She asked, standing in front of the swirling portal, long black hair trailing behind her as the wind played with it. 

 

She turned to the boy beside her, his own hair ruffling in the wind. She can just feel how much he ached to run his hand through it as he does when he’s nervous. Shaved on the left side, and styled to perfection. So much so that even the wind refrains from messing up. The wind instead curls around it happily, like a ferret. His multiple ear and eyebrow piercings glint in the light of the portal, and the moon, his eyes are hard as he glares at the swirling area of magic as though it has wronged him somehow. 

 

To be fair, the look is justified. 

 

The world thinks I’m evil?’ He had said before, one eyebrow quirked, expression like cold obsidian. He paused, searching her face, before responding, ‘So who am I to prove them wrong?’ 

 

He breathed harshly, “It’s been forever…” he deflected. She mentally sighed,

' So we’re playing this game are we, Spi'?

 

She hummed, “Technicalities aside, it is bound to be odd.” 

 

He turns to look over at her, “You think they’ll disapprove?”

 

Insecurities never leave.

 

“Wouldn’t that be a bit hypocritical?” He gave her a look, and she sighed, bringing her hand up to fiddle with her dangling earrings. 

 

“I mean honestly, if they did…. screw them. We’ll do our job and fuck off to Alaska or something.” 

 

Snorting, he played along. “Alaska?”

 

She shrugged, “I’ve had enough of the heat.”

 

He nodded, but before he could respond, a robot-like voice sounded in their ears. From their transplants, they would later comment. 

 

“Initiating Department of Mysteries Protecal, please wait for color.”

 

He looked at her in amusement as he put on his helmet, chuckling. “Department of Mysteries?”

 

“Seemed fitting, and you should have given it more thought before suggesting I name everything. Be grateful I didn’t rename all the AI's.”

 

“I mean…”

 

“Shut up.”

 

“You’re such a dork, Evers.” 

 

“Right back at you, Parker.”

 

“All clear,” 

 

Helmets on, the pair leaned on their bikes, letting out a harsh breath once in unison, before taking off toward the portal, blue smoke curling around them and whisking them away. 

 

The field lay still, the crickets resuming their chirping, and an owl hooted into the still of the night.

 

Miles away, the city of New York slept on blissfully, not realizing that when they awoke tomorrow, the world had just officially lost a superhero.

 

Who truly is good or evil?

 

~ ‘*’ ~

 

Suddenly out of nowhere, Peter Parker screamed in agony, falling to the ground.

 

“Peter?!” Tony Stark yelled, alarmed, and the Avengers grew still and bolted to form a semi-circle around the duo. Dropping to his knees, Tony panicked, having no idea what to do as the boy who he dubbed as his son convulsed on the ground. 

 

“Peter! What-? Someone help him!” Peter was shaking and crying, as pain like one he had never even imagined coursed throughout his body. 

 

He felt as though he was on fire, and dumped in the arctic ocean, like he was suddenly allergic to his own skin, his body. 

 

His spider senses made it so much worse.

 

The avengers stood staring frozen in shock as their youngest literally dissolved into black spiders before their eyes. 

 

Before they could process it, the spiders scuttled a few feet away from them and quite literally *poofed* into black smoke. The ground shook.

 

The wind picked up rapidly and dark clouds rolled in carrying lighting and thunder within. 

 

The sky flashed and a lightning bolt hit directly into the black smoke that had once been Peter Parker.

 

Swirling, the black smoke adopted streaks of dark blue and two figures sped out from the mess of magic, the portal flashing white for a moment. 

 

It died down but the ones who were witnessing the magic happen didn’t focus on the closing portal but rather the two motorbikes circling around them like sharks. 

 

The bikes stopped where the portal once stood, and their drivers got off their respective rides. 

 

The Avengers loaded up their weapons, all in offensive positions, pointing at the newcomers who didn’t react. They simply leaned against their bikes, one with arms crossed and the other with a hand on their hip. 

 

“Who are you and what have you done?” Tony roared, his emotions all over the place.

 

The first figure whipped off their helmet, her long hair blowing behind her- so she was a girl -like a cape in the wind that had suddenly began to blow. As if it knew she was about to reveal herself. 

 

“Well, Peter I guess you were correct. It is Iron Stark, not Iron Potts. What a shame~,” She drawled with a slight accent, yet no one could quite place it, she sounded oddly floaty like air, but at the same time, grounded. 

 

The second figure ducked his head, taking his helmet off as well. His face was momentarily covered but he chuckled, and lifted his head, brown eyes making direct eye contact with Tony.

 

“You doubt me? I’m wounded, Vaani.” He drawled, sounding utterly bored. 

 

Tony blinked rapidly. No way. 

 

That was Peter, no doubt. Yet still he doubted. 

 

Peter was taller, and that wasn’t even the main difference. The kid- was he even a kid anymore? -had completely changed. His hair, although still brown and curly, had a few highlights, had a side shave, showing off all the - oh my Thor - piercings. He seemed older and was that eyeliner?

 

Both wore a classic black leather suit, the kind you expect spies to wear, yet were a bit different. Peter’s seemed to have a metallic spider symbol that shown only a bit. The sun hit it at the right angle, just enough for it to glint and shine like a million diamonds. 

 

The girl- Vaani? -had an odd heart like shape which, on the left half, swirled where the curls connected, making a spiral, 3 empty dots adoring the opposite side. Three squiggly lines were perched on left side near the point, and the right side, which was the closest to looking like a normal heart shape, was left slightly unfinished at the bottom and filled the empty area with a single filled dot. Odd, but there were more important things to stress about.

 

For now.

 

“P-peter?” Tony gasped, seeming to be the first to shake himself out of shock.

 

“In the flesh, Mr. Stark,” Peter smirked, although eyes flashed with sadness at Tony’s name. Hmmm...

 

“Oi, where’s the little spiderling? I wanted to see smol Parker.” The girl shouted from behind, balancing her helmet on her hip. 

 

“I’m assuming, from the expressions on everyone’s face, the same that had happened with young Eversneen,” Peter said giving the girl a side glance as she came to rest her elbow on his shoulder. 

 

She winced and looked at Tony, her face one of sympathy.

 

“Ouch, was it spiders?” Tony nodded hesitantly, and Not-Peter snorted, looking at the girl beside him blandly. 

 

“No, it was horses,”

 

She looked at him, exasperated, and pushed at his shoulder, 

 

“Shut up, arse.” 

 

Steve shook himself once and said, 

 

“Ok, what the fuck?”

 

Not-Peter and the girl looked surprised, and the rest of the Avengers most likely had the same expression. 

 

“Well done Spider-baby, you made the Cap swear.” She spoke.

 

Not-Peter looked offended, and poked at her arm, “Don’t act as though you aren’t here, Miss Rima.” He said sarcastically. 

 

Natasha looked seconds away from murdering someone, “Either explain or we’ll be explaining your deaths to the police.”

 

Amusement filled the two’s faces before masks fell into place, and they straightened themselves up. 

 

“I’m Vaani Eversneen, and this is Peter Parker. We’re from the future.”

 

~ ‘*’ ~

Chapter Text

 

~ ‘*’ ~

I'm surrounded by stars...

~ ‘*’ ~

 

"Time Travel?" Vaani scoffed inwardly, annoyed at the fact she had to keep explaining this to the group in front of them.

 

Peter wasn't much help either, that useless arachnid just leaning there against the wall behind her, doing Morgana only knows what on his Mirpod

 

"Really?" She groaned, throwing her head back to look at him, throwing her arms up dramatically. So she was a drama queen, sue her, she could care less.

 

He smirked, meeting her pleading eyes for a brief moment, the words crystal clear in his chocolate brown eyes. 

 

'Nah'

 

Many have compared Peter Parker to a little puppy dog, his eyes supporting the simile to a T, but they do not know him as she does.

 

Peter Parker is a little shit.

 

"I'm literally losing brain cells here, Parker. Help a girl out." She rolled her eyes at the Avengers complaints at the statement.

 

"I was under the impression that we only had one brain cell?" He drawls, peering up through his lashes at her, amusement making his chocolate eyes sparkle.

 

"We did." She deadpanned, "And currently we have none. Zero, negative, zilch, nada, nothing…" 

 

So maybe, towards the end, she began ranting, maybe….

 

Just a little…

 

Shut up.

 

"Can we rewind a bit?" * Ya, it’s rewind time.* She turned towards the Avengers once more, refraining from making a literal rewind noise. So what if she did it in her head anyway? Peter was doing the same thing, so there.

 

Justified.

 

"So let's get this straight," Ha, "Peter is from the future, and the girl… Vaani was it? Is from an alternate universe where basically everything's the same except reverse gender?" Pretty much 'Mr. Falcon' … 

 

"And Vaani had to leave her dimension because of some Purple Titan destroying and killing everyone other than her and she leapt through the space-time continuum-"

 

" Technically it's called Limbo, Mr. Rogers.." She cut in, huh they were actually understanding what she was saying…

 

"To find Peter in a post-endgame(?) world and you decided to stop said Titan from destroying Peter's life, since he very obviously survived, thus coming into the past?"

 

I'm rather impressed….

 

"I'm sorry, do you know how ridiculous that sounds?"

 

And~ there it is…

 

Peter snorted, most likely thinking the same thing. The Avengers herded themselves out, most likely going to have a "team meeting" leaving them in the common room on their own. Well other than FRIDAY of course.

 

The two shared a look.

 

Imagine if we told them what had gone on after I found Peter.

 

"Classic Natasha," Peter mumbled, closing his Mirpod and putting it in his back pocket, threading his fingers behind and leaning back against the wall. 

 

If he weren't against the wall, she would have kicked whatever was supporting him.

 

Yes, it's childish,

 

Sue. Her.

 

"C's aside.." communicating, comprehending, and commanding, AKA what the Avengers were doing, or at least attempting to. They've been through this before. 

 

"How much time do we have?" He asked looking at her. 

 

She pulled out her Mirpod , flipping it open, gazing at the screen and the small sapphire blue holograms that hovered beside it. She typed away with her thumbs, the circular device resting easily in her palm.

 

23% 

 

"I'd say a year at most, if we split it up evenly…"

 

"One more jump?"

 

"Mmm-hmm." These were so much better than Phones, she did a pretty great job if she does say so herself...

 

"We only need one more right?"

 

"Mmm-hmm..." Why is the internet so slow ugh. I need the wifi password, or does Stark even have a Wifi password? What would it be? Ass-emble? 

 

"Which one again?"

 

"Bl~ue" Aha! Gottem. Now I just have to track it... Why did this one  have to be "~the most difficult~". Typical. 

 

"Right..."

 

"Right..-Hey!" He snatched her Mirpod from her hands, dangling it in front of her. She swiped at him half-heartedly. 

 

"Give it back, arse!" He laughed, teasing her and she twitched, the urge to chase him around the room as though they were kids almost unbearable. The only thing holding her back being the fact that Tony very obviously has cameras everywhere. 

 

That man was paranoid as f-

 

"What in the name of Earth, Asgard, and everything in between is going on here?" They look up, eyes wide as though they were toddlers caught trying to steal a cookie from the kitchen. 

 

Speak of the Devil...

 

Vaani half in Peter's lap, Peter on the top of the couch holding the Mirpod in his left hand, holding it as high as he could and his other hand pushing at her shoulder. Vaani reaching up to grab the device from his grip while attempting to push him off the couch.

 

It's oddly domestic, and honestly pretty normal for the two of them. But the Avengers were rather perplexed by their behavior, after all, they were in the Avengers' tower and don't exactly have said team's trust. 

 

The pair, previously frozen, "relaxed" if it could even be called that. It was that stance you took when you've been caught but are attempting to pull off the aura that everything is a-okay. 

 

"Hey~ Mr.Stark…" 

 

Vaani looked around and thought for a moment. You know what would really get a kick out of Peter, being the little shit that he is?

 

"Ok listen here, I really want to explain this to you. What happened was...a potato flew around my room before you came."

 

Vaani kept a straight face through the whole sentence and then looked to Peter. He was shaking of laughter. 

 

"Do we even wanna know?"

 

 Mr Stark asked, sounding like he was reprimanding two small children. And if they were being honest he was.

 

"Oh, hi, thanks for checking in, I'm still a piece of garbageeee~"

 

Said Peter, giving finger guns to Mr. Stark and then throwing himself into the couch.

 

Vaani couldn't stop laughing. Her sides hurt. 

 

"What's going on here, Mr. Stark, is that after that giant purple menace freaking sister snapped all of my family out of existence, I yeeted to Peter's dimension and decided to help him while he was having an existential crisis after some fishbowl wearing freak ruined his life. Peter said 'this bitch empty, YEET' to his previous life and joined me. That's what happened."

 

By this time, Peter was rolling on the floor, holding his sides and choking on his own giggles. Vaani smirked at him, and gave him a hand. He grabbed it and pulled himself up, wiping his eyes. 

 

And if Vaani could go back to that day, she would have taken a picture of Mr. Stark's dumbstruck and pained face, that was wondering where he went wrong. 

 

But alas she hadn’t because she then began attacking one(1) Peter Parker, who ran from her holding her Mirpod while she screamed threats at him in Hindi. 

 ~ ‘*’ ~

But they never hear us wishin'

~ ‘*’ ~

Chapter Text

 

Chapter 3: Time won't follow the path we came


 

 

Art by  @paradoxicalblueberry

 


 

~ ‘*’ ~

“This sounds preposterous!” 

 

Your face is preposterous

Peter nO

 

“Wow look at Rogers, using big words…” Peter muttered under his breath. Vaani elbowed him, glaring at the boy beside her, yet it was only for show, for their mind link revealed that Vaani was cackling on the inside. Honestly this again? She could understand why teachers get so sick of students asking the same stupid questions. 

 

This has gone on since forever now!

 

“Look, we’ve explained this at least-”

“6 times!!!”

 

“Yes, six times -honestly-” She huffed under her breath, brushing her long midnight strands off her shoulder.

 

“We're from two alternate realities, each touched by Thanos, blah blah blah. Destroyed by the Infinity stones, etc etc.

 

“Peter stop it! Explain properly or let me do it!”

 

 “eXpLaIn pRoPeRlY oR lEt mE dO iT!!!”

 

“I do not sound like that!!!”

 

“Sure Princess,”

 

“I said not to call me that!”

 

“And I never said I wouldn’t!”

 

“I don’t have time for you right now-”

 

“Says the girl who modified a time machine and sent us back to the pas-”

 

“Anyways!” Vaani cut off, glancing at the Avengers, all of whom have a variety of expressions on their faces, ranging from annoyed, unimpressed, amused, fond (???) , and everything in between.

 

So much for a first impression.

 

What’s new?

Shut up this is your fault. 

 

I ask again, What’s new?

 

Ugh, Peter stop being Angsty!

How dare you-

 

“Basically-” Vaani cleared her throat in an effort to calm her nerves, thank the stones for Gin and her tips on how to deal with emotions. 

 

So, maybe her mentor had taught her to do it only during press conferences and meetings and such and not to block her feels as she does, but Gin had done, but what she doesn’t know won’t kill her...

 

It can’t because she’s already dea-

 

VAANI FOCUS DARLING

She took a breath, and smiled, ignoring the way her senses flared. Out of the corner of her eye, she saw Tony Stark’s eyes narrow, her curiosity peeked out before diving back down, and the rest of the Avengers expressions. 

 

“Yes, as Peter said, both our worlds had been nearly destroyed by the Infinity stones, and that giant raisin. Well, destroyed in two different senses, my world had lost being completely destroyed, whilst Peter’s world had, well, lost many to the unsatisfactory ‘victory’-”

 

“If you could even call it that…” Peter mumbles, cutting her off, and Vaani was torn between scolding Peter, or giving him a huge hug like he deserves. 

 

“Indeed, BUT! We-” She gestures between her and Peter, “-have a plan and a way to~…”

 

She paused, searching for a word that would downplay what had truly occurred and what they will have to do. 

 

 ‘... fix this mess, by restoring the balance to the Multiverse- yes it exists- Thanos may have been ‘defeated’, but our sources say that, unfortunately, he isn’t vanquished. Meaning... ”

 

“He will be back, and by then there will be no way to stop it. He will be undefeatable.” Peter finished, arms crossed and that hard look in his eyes back once again. 

 

Wow Peter, way to steal my thunder

 

Excuse me I’m not Thor

 

She rolled her eyes, which seemed rather out of place for the aura that the room had adopted. 

 

An odd feeling settled in the air, the topic rather heavy and quite frankly, terrifying for these words to be coming out of what seems to be two kids who were barely 18. 

 

Shut up Narrator, we’re technically 18+

 

As annoyed as I am Vaan, the Blip doesn’t count

 

Shut up Peter

 

You say that so much that it has lost all meaning. 

 

I didn’t ask to be attacked

 

Oh honey, you have another thing coming for you.

Ugh

 

“Wait, so what is your ‘plan’-” Clint pipes up, having that voice parents adopt when they are so tired and just accept the BS spewing from their child’s mouth. 

 

If she could have a nickel for every time she has rolled her eyes-

 

 “You think we wouldn’t have told you if we coul-” Peter starts, already riled by the tone, let alone the presentation. Vaani cuts in before he does something he’ll regret. 

 

...Again...

 

“That is classified.”

“...Classified…”

 

“Yes. Classified.” Vaani nods, matter-a-factly. Beside her, Peter facepalms. 

 

“Vaani, I love you… but you are an idiot, sometimes.”

 

“I resent-” They bicker as the Avengers share looks laced with obvious emotions, and excuse themselves from the room. 

 

So much for first impressions...

~ ‘*’ ~


 

 

My Art for Vaani!!!

Chapter Text

Chapter 5: Small talk is a great disguise

 

~ ‘*’ ~

"So what do we do?" Steve asked

 

" We help them" Tony stood up. 

 

"Wha-"

 

"No Capsicle, we are the adults and they are just kids. In fact, that's my kid . So yes, we are going to help them. Whether that means just housing them, or actively going along with them. We are supposed to protect, and that's what we're gonna do. "

 

He paused before addressing the room, "At least that's what I plan on doing, you are welcome to join me, or I'll be taking the kids back to the Stark Tower, make your choice, I won't be changing mine."

 

The others shared looks. 

 

“Well, if they are truly interdimensional? Why don’t we call Strange?

 

Tony groaned. 

 

~ ‘*’ ~

 

“Wait wait wait, why can’t we just tell them?” 

 

There’s a beat of silence where Vaani simply stares, and Peter draws back a little.

 

“What?” He asked defensively, motioning her to explain with a turn of his wrist. 

 

She furrowed her eyebrows, and cocked her head. 

 

With the driest and bored voice, she drawls, “I’m trying to figure out if you are truly that dumb.”

 

“It’s a legitimate question! Why can’t we just tell them?”

 

“Wh- Because that would upset the balance! We've already done enough by pulling ourselves into this time frame!” Vaani sputtered, although she had a feeling she knew where Peter would be taking this.

 

“The plan was to wipe their memories instead of just locking them right?”

 

“In theory, yes….” She raised an eyebrow, turning her full attention to him now. 

 

“So why don’t we tell them? It’s not like they’ll know what’s gonna happen once we leave, so they couldn’t affect that much could they?” 

 

She sighed, bringing her hand up to rest on, as she leaned on the table in the meeting room. 

 

“Peter, let’s think about it this way. In each of the universes we had visited prior to this one, they all had a few things in common. One of those things was that not a single one of those had much to do with us, Peter Parker and Vaani Eversneen. They all had us in one way or another, yes, but none had us us.” She paused, letting him nod to show his understanding. 

 

“Unfortunately, this is a little different because not only have we entered a universe where a Peter Parker is alive, a relevant person, and Spiderman, but we’ve entered a universe where that Peter Parker is you!” 

 

“I knew that already but-”

 

“Peter, we literally took your past, isolated the moment we entered and the moment we left, and created another pocket universe.”

 

There’s a moment of stunned silence, before-

 

“Wait what?”

 

The seer sighs before flicking her wrist. 

 

The walls fade away, and the two teens appear to be suspended in a frame of nothingness before purple lines appear in every which way. They come to rest in multiple purple grids, layered on top of each other, against a black background. The grids are evenly spaced horizontal and vertical lines and seem to be moving around.

 

Vaani and Peter stand side by side, the lines bending a bit under them. 

 

“So imagine this as the blueprints of the universe, sort of like the construction behind a house before the walls cover it all out. We sorcerers call this model the fabric of the universe, it represents space-time.” She explains to the spiderling. He nods, fascinated. 

 

“See how it bends under us, that’s because we are , well, matter. I cannot remember the science behind it, but everything in the universe has mass and when we are in the plane of existence, they rest on the fabric making it bend. I believe there's a scientific theory that has to do with gravity or something that depends on the mass and the bend, I can't quite recall, but that’s not important.”

 

She pauses and allows the model to bring up two swirling clumps of smoke and what appears to sand. The models are similar to what looks like galaxies only much much more massive. One is red, and the other is a light silvery blue. The "fabric"  bends under them, the folds greater than that of the two teens.

 

“Imagine this as our respective universes, mine is the silver whilst yours is the red. Let’s call mine Earth -394, and yours Earth -1999999.

 

“You mean that’s their actual names?”

 

“Yes, but moving on. What we have done is remove ourselves from our present timelines.” 

 

A bit of the sand separates itself from each of the masses, smoke trailing after it. They form two silhouettes, one of a girl and the other of a boy. The swirling ‘universes’ colors dimmed a bit, as the two figures trailed farther away from them. 

 

“Removing ourselves from our universes didn’t disrupt our past, so we hadn’t affected the physical aspects of the worlds that much. If we were to enter another universe, we aren’t affected much and neither is the timelines, especially if our other counterparts aren’t relevant to what we did in that world.” She lets the two figures run and interact, a soft smile gracing her face. 

 

Peter watches the models curiously before turning to the slightly shorter girl next to him.

 

“But what we are doing right now is entering your universe during the past. And more specifically, during your past.”

 

The figures dive into the mass of red, and purple “lighting bolts” shoot across the smoke and sand. Vaani takes a deep breath before beckoning the world to come closer. The teens seem to glitch across the plane and appear closer to the mass, close enough to see the details.

 

For a moment, they can see, as they zoom in, the masses of galaxies, solar systems and stars. The planets and the realms. They zoom into the solar system where Earth resides before focusing on the planet itself. 

 

The globe is shown in view, clouds rolling and waves splashing. They zoom closer, seeing the different countries, lands, oceans and the cities whilst the globe spins.

 

“If, hypothetically, we did tell them there’s a rather strong chance that the time period where you and I entered and left would be broken off into a permanent sub-verse. Keeping them in the dark is safest, although not ideal, we don’t have much to spare. Especially not the avengers.”

 

The model zooms out from the scenes of people and back to it’s swirling sands and smoke. It suddenly twists angrily. For a moment you can see the burgundy and silver figures in the mass, before purple ‘lightning’ surrounds them. The figures and a good portion of the sand are pushed out of the mass, ripping off and slowly being changed to the same color of the lightning-like bolts of electricity. 

 

“But what did you mean by the pocket universe thing you referenced? is it the same as a sub-verse?” Peter asked, as he looked closer at the purple aggravated swirling smoke and sands. 

 

“Nope, it’s not the same. I had actually isolated the moment we entered from the rest of the timeline. Just in case things go south, I could keep the problem as isolated from the future as possible. Lord forbid that actually happens, because it will be near impossible to keep them from separating.”

 

“The timelines aren’t separated right now?”

 

“No they aren’t.” 

 

The masses disappear and a long white straight line with arrows on each side appears. 

 

“Here is the original timeline,”

 

Another white line with an arrow at the end branches out downwards, a good two-eighths of the way from the start of the line.

 

“And that is the timeline where we reside in currently.”

 

The line curves a bit and meets back with the originally straight line in a low arc, about another 2-eighths of the way later.

 

“And if all goes well, that is what would happen. The straight line was what the timeline was like when we aren’t in the picture.The two timelines would run parallel for a brief moment before they meet up once again.” 

 

“And if it doesn’t?” 

 

The line, instead of connecting, shot right through the straight line, effectively cutting it. The rest of the straight line blinks in and out of existence. Peter stares for a moment. 

 

“...oh.”

 

“Yeah, not good.”

 

“Mmm.” 

 

Vaani lets the models disappear and ‘return’ them to the meeting room, where in reality they hadn’t left at all. They sit for a moment, Vaani letting Peter process while Peter leaves Vaani to get her bearings back, the ‘lesson’ all too familiar to her. Just like her mento-

 

“ That reminds me of Albert Einstein's theory of relativity,” Peter cuts in, his eyes lighting up in that sweet geeky way they do. Some things never change, Vaani muses.

 

“Oh?” 

 

“The science aspect of your magic mumbo-jumbo-”

 

“Hey-”

 

“-is that in the everyday world, matter takes up space in three dimensions: length, height, and width. But time is another dimension that works very closely with the other three. It’s how we can see and measure events happening.”

 

“Right, So if you take time and add it together with the other three dimensions, you get space-time.” Vaani adds, remembering her lessons, both in school and from her mentor. 

 

“Exactly, I read somewhere that ‘Scientists often say that space-time is like the never-ending fabric of our universe’ .” Peter muses, and Vaani scrunches her nose up with a frown.

 

“What did I say then?”

 

“Hush, I’m getting there,” He stops for a moment, before reciting like he’s reading from a textbook, “According to Albert Einstein’s theory of relativity, the fabric isn’t just flat, it bends around objects. This bending represents the force of gravity, the more massive the object, the stronger the force of gravity is, and the more space-time is bent.” 

 

“I swear I just said that, didn’t I just say that?” 

 

“Yes, but I said it more science-y,” Peter smirks.

 

“Whatever, sorcerers figured out space-time first.” Vaani narrowed her eyes, daring him to oppose.

 

He tilts his head, “Mmmm, debatable.” 

 

Vaani scoffs, gearing up for another debate, but before they can, the Avengers walk in with someone she didn’t plan on seeing.

 

“Oh shiiiiiii~itake mushrooms.” 

 

Dr. Strange.

 

~ ‘*’ ~

 

"And these are the children who pose such a threat, Rogers?" The wizard drawls, unamused as he takes in the appearance of the two teens. 

 

Although he plays off that they are harmless he's no fool.

 

So these are the children of the prophecy

 

… yes that would be us, greetings.

 

Strange nearly jumped, not expecting the communications link to be opened, as it's rather advanced magic. Even for a gifted. 

 

"Haha, yes we aren't threats at all~ just your inter-local-"

 

" That's not a word-"

 

She glares at the boy next to her for interrupting, he doesn't even look up from his 'tech'. "- teens droppin' in for a while. Don't mind us….. we'll just clear up some things and be out of your hair." 

 

" Whatever's left of it …" Parker mutters under his breath, and Barton snorts from somewhere in the room.

 

"Right..." Stark claps his hands, bringing Stephen out from his scrutiny. "Now since it's late, all Spider-babies and Hermione Grangers have to sleep while the big kids talk with Dumbledore, capiche?"

 

Peter gives the elder a deadpan stare, while the girl opens her mouth, most likely to argue, but Stark leaves no room for complaints.

 

"Go on, out. Shoo, before I break out the bug spray!" 

 

Vaani rolls her eyes, “Ugh, is he always like this?” 

 

“Unfortunately, yes.” 

 

The teens are herded out, the mind link fading, but Stephan pays them no mind. In fact, he’s minutely relieved because he needs a moment to get his bearings. 

 

That girl is powerful.

Peter always had the potential, he just had to grow into it. What did throw Stephen off was that he didn’t look all that older. He was expecting the boy to be around 22 years old before the Spider grew into his abilities, yet Parker looks less than five years older than he did when the wizard had first met him. 

 

It was… concerning to say the least.

 

But that girl, he’s heard of her before. 

 

Vaani Eversneen, the speaker of the The Gladiolus Stones , something Stephen himself had only heard of fairly recently. That girl had been chosen long before her birth, but in true fashion, her destiny wasn’t set in stone. At least not completely. 

 

No, this girl was one to mold her own future. And she has. 

 

“Doc, you look a little strained. Got anything you’d like to share with the class?” Stephen breathed in deeply through his nose, closing his eyes. Right the avengers, the kids. 

 

“Stark…” Stephen turned around, facing them once more.

 

“That girl, she’s…. Powerful. More so than any other sorcerer I have yet to meet. I’ve heard myths of her even existing.”

 

“Myths? Of her?” Stark frowns, not liking the way that sounds. 

 

  Always perceptive, Natasha raises an eyebrow. “Of the girl? Or her abilities?” 

 

“There is a prophecy that states the stones would have chosen a bearer. One for the Infinity stones-” They flinch, memories of Ultron and the aftermath all too real. “And another for the fabled “ Gladiolus Stones”. The Gladiolus stones are yet to be confirmed as real because there isn’t any solid record on them.”

 

“I haven’t heard of these- gladious~ stones before...” 

 

Gladiolus, Rogers. Hence why I said there isn't any solid record. In fact the only place it ever mentioned the name has been in the prophecy about Vaani.”

 

The room was silent for a moment. Questions brewing in everyone’s mind. 

 

“What is the-”

 

“What do we do?” Clint shut his mouth as Sam asked at the same time as him. Strange was momentarily relieved that he hadn’t had to answer the question. 

 

“For now, I believe it’s best if we leave them be, whatever secrets Eversneen is keeping it has to be for a good reason, not because she’s just doing it for the sake of it.” She couldn’t afford that and Strange understood that.

 

Time is a bitch and he knows it, all too well.   

~ ‘*’ ~

 

From Darkness to light 

The curious delight

 

She will be the one

To fix the undone

 

With those by her side

 stones the ride

Twelve to seek and find, 

The power her mind

 

Balance be brought

Follow she will not

Her own path carved

To what she thinks she deserves

 

Though now you may not comprehend 

Every riddle has an end

 

The Children of Hexa

 Are just beyond the bend

 

 

~ ‘*’ ~

Chapter Text

~ ‘*’ ~

 

 I swear from the mountains to the sea, I will make you proud. 

 

I swear on my happiest memories, on my secret confessions, on my hushed and blocked emotions, I will make it alright.

 

I swear to every deity out there, I will avenge you.

 

I swear on my future, I will bring you back. 

 

Because my life isn’t complete without you.

 

~ ‘*’ ~

 

“Ow, that was my foot!”

 

“Shut up! Idiot.”

 

“Whatcha kiddies doing?” The two teens froze, stopping their escapade. Vaani squeezes her eyes shut in exasperation, mumbling something under her breath before spinning around with a- rather fake -innocent smile on her face. 

 

“Oh you know, walking~,” Tony raised an eyebrow and pointed behind himself with a jerk of his thumb. 

 

“Last I checked the rooms are that-a-way.” 

 

Peter nudges Vaani not-so-discreetly and the other girl sighs dropping her air of nonchalance. 

 

“We’re.....tracking,” She draws out, pausing mid-phrase to attempt to word it better. Tony gives a quizzical expression, and gestures with his hand for the girl to explain further, his arms crossed. 

 

She huffs, blowing out a stray strand of long black hair out of her eyes, although that proves to be useless as it falls right back in the spot it had been earlier. “We have a mission we came here to do you know?”

 

Tony follows her movements, the way her fingers momentarily twitched towards her hip where there would ideally be weapons. The way her eyes locked for a moment on each of the possible exits, and how her other hand moved towards Peter. The two teens’ postures on guard and in a position that both protected and complemented each other, indicating that they had been, at least fighting , as partners for a good while.  

 

“Uh huh,” Tony raises an eyebrow, and momentarily taken back at how parental he’s acting, I need a drink . He catches the tail of Peter’s grumbling, which consists of him complaining at how ‘dad like’ he’s acting. 

 

Tony resists the urge to sigh. 

 

The three engage in their stand off for a little while, neither of the parties wanting to drop first. Eventually, Tony sucks it up and pushes the very childish urge to play along far away and dons his least favorite look, the adult.

 

Tony points at the two, “Bed, now.” Vaani and Peter narrow their eyes, and slightly backed away. 

 

This time he really did sigh.

 

~ ‘*’ ~

 

“You think he knows that we won’t be sleeping?” Vaani asks Peter as she climbs out of his bathroom mirror. 

 

He blows his fringe up with a harsh breath out, leaning back in his desk hair, “Probably, but do we care?”

 

Vaani grins. “Nope!”

 

~ ‘*’ ~

 

“Oh my god! No!” Vaani yelled, and slammed her head on the kitchen table. 

 

The avengers flinched, and Peter startled, looking up from his device. 

 

“What did you do Vaani?” 

 

She turned her head towards the boy beside her, “Peter, in your universe did the Ex’s come back?” 

 

Peter cocked his head, “What do you mea—?” 

 

“After CW, did they come back to the compound?!” She flailed, and Peter’s eyes widened, and looked around at those who were up and eating breakfast. 

 

“No….” He trailed off, eyes wide. Vaani threw her arms up dramatically, as Peter turned back to her, “I thought you said this was exactly like mine!” 

 

“That’s what I thought , but I was wrong…?”

 

“Are you asking me or telling me?” 

 

“Do you think I know?” 

 

“What are you two going on about now?” Tony asked coming in with a baggy dark gray hoodie, beelining for the coffee machine. 

 

“Mr. Stark when did the Avengers come back to the compound?” 

 

“Uh like a few months ago?” 

 

“Fuck fuck fuck fuck fuck.” Vaani chanted as she frantically gathered her stuff up, and beside her Peter stood, a calculating expression on his face. Vaani elbowed him and he too grabbed his things from the table. 

 

The two ignored the chorus of ‘language’ that passed through the room.

 

“Where are you two going?” Steve asked, in what the avengers had dubbed his mom voice. Peter turned towards him and shook his head violently, “nO don’t ask!” 

 

Vaani exploded, ranting, “Ugh now we have to— Goddamnit I knew this would happen! But nooooo, nothing can be easy can it? Nope! Because the fates don’t think I’ve gone through enough, the little shits. Now— stop laughing Peter!— I have to redo everything-arghhhhhhhhhh!” Her voice fades away as she ranted, walking down the hallways towards the rooms, Peter trailing behind her clutching his side from laughing.

 

“Well then,” Tony said, blinking at the door way before sipping his coffee. He's not nearly caffeinated enough to deal with this right now.

 

“Teenagers…?” Sam shrugged.

 

~ ‘*’ ~

 

“So we’re in an alternate universe?”

 

“Yep.”

 

“But how? I thought you made us go to my past, you know via the machine thingy.”

 

“Bro what That’s not how the portal works!”

 

“It’s not?”

“You’d think you’re a newbie at this, but we’ve been at this for about 4 years now?”

 

“Technically only three years, but go off I guess.”

 

“Do you ever pay attention to when I’m talking?”

 

“...”

 

“Typical, basically the portal we’ve been using for the past three fricking years is one that follows the Fearlings not just taking us to some XYZ dimension.”

 

“Oh! I remember now!”

 

“Uh huh.”

 

“Wait what, but the only difference is that the Avengers at back at the compound?”

 

“After CW yeah.”

 

“So how much will that change then, I can’t see it going that differently.”

 

“Peter, when Thanos does happen in this universe, who do you think will go fight?”

 

“Everyon— oh .” 

 

“Exactly.”

“Well shit.”

 

“Mmm.”

 

“I still don’t get why you’re so worked up over this—”

 

“Wha Because I had planned this all out! I predicted where and when the fearlings would take the stone, so we could save time and be ready to finish this mess of half a decade with a bang! But nooooo~ I miscalculated and instead of it just being a duplicate of your universe it’s another goddamn AU!”

“You mean mirrored univ—”

 

“Parker I swear to You better shut up if you want to live.”

 

“You love me too much to actually kill me.”

 

“Wanna test that theory, Webs?”

“Bring it, Mira.”

~ ‘*’ ~

 

It's been a week since the teens crashed at Earth -161999, and Tony was a bit concerned to say the least. 

 

Why?

 

Because not once had he seen either teen sleep.

 

So concerned was an understatement.

 

Steve was always the first one up, with Tony stumbling in every now and again to restock on coffee after a long period in the lab,— so maybe he was a bit hypocritical but these were KIDS, literally babies!!! , and the kids would already be up. Either working at the table, common room, lab, or, occasionally, the ceiling. Literally all of the Avengers, (ex- or not) , were a bit concerned, but when even Tony grew ansty, that means it was a real issue. 

 

The two sat on the couches, Vaani upside down in her chair and Peter criss crossed on the floor. Where at the beginning the two had been diligently working, Vaani was now fiddling with a mechanical pencil, and shuffling loose papers. All in all the kids lost all hope of making sense.

 

"If the moon is made of cheese and Saturn is 6, how many pancakes could you eat on Mars?" Vaani asked, flipping over and sliding down the couch and doing a flip so she was in front of the coffee table. Peter didn't even look up from his... device ??? If one could call it that. 

 

It was basically an old compact that was somehow being used as a phone/tablet and a hologram projector. Fascinating actually, Tony had considered asking the girl about it…

 

No! Focus!

 

"Yellow?" He responded, and Vaani hummed chewing on her blue and grey mechanical pencil before crossing something out on a piece of paper beside her and smirking. 

 

"Actually it's packaging peanuts." 

 

Sam choked on his granola, and Nat patted his back whilst continuing to badly eavesdrop on the two. 

 

Peter looked up confused, and cocked his head to the side, like a puppy and for a brief moment Tony could see his Peter, the one with curly brown hair that was left untamed and *cough* no piercings. Peter's brown eyes widened and the teen threw his head back, groaning,

 

"Ohhhhhhh, I see. Because you carry the two and-"

 

Damnit Tony couldn't take this anymore.

 

"Ok ok, break it up you two. You've been at it for days now." 

 

" But Mr. Stark~ , We have to figure out whether or not-"

 

"I don't wanna hear it." Tony cut her off, and Vaani pouted, like a toddler . God these kids would be the death of him.

 

"You have been up for Lord only knows how long, and at this point I don't even wanna know what's going on here, for the sake of my non-existent sanity and everyone else's as well."

 

Tony glared at Peter who was about to open his mouth but Vaani beat him to it,

 

"Sorry can't sleep in the daytime."

 

"Why not?" Goddamnit Cap, I had this under control...

 

Vaani deadpanned, and rolled her eyes, "Because, I'm a vampire, duh"

 

Peter gasped dramatically and jumped away from Vaani. "Ahhhhh! My Babysitter's a Vampire!!!" Vaani facepalmed, slamming her hand down her face, and honestly? Tony felt the same. 

 

“Get off the ceiling you heathen ,” She scolded, glaring at the boy above her.

 

Peter rolled his eyes, “Yes, mother~”

 

“Shut it Webs, or as mother I’ll ground your arse.”

 

“Ooooo, kinky ~”

 

Peter !” 

 

She bolted after the boy, who ran like the wind, with her shoe in her hand. Her other, lay discarded only a few feet away from where the brown-haired boy had been moments ago. Shouting could be heard from the hall until it faded.

 

“Jesus Christ, that conversation gave me a whiplash.” Tony muttered, running a hand down his face, turning back to a stricken Steve Rogers who had a classic astonished expression. He looked like those characters in that japanese cartoons, or whatever...

 

“Tell me about it,” Clint muttered, as he took a bite of his spoon and tried to scoop his cereal with his toast.

 

~ ‘*’ ~