The camera is shaky as its positioned. The frame is filled with Peter’s face, biting his lip in concentration as he fiddles with the camera, hair not gelled, and unruly.
“Come on, Parker,” a voice says, southern accent deep and soothing, behind him, “We don’t have all day.”
“Did I ask though?” Peter says back, and we hear a groan.
“Parker,” a sharp voice, female this time, says.
He moves back, and four more teenagers are visible, all sitting on the floor, sitting on cushions, around a coffee table. There’s a black box on the table.
“Hi everyone, welcome back. My name’s Peter, and I’m here with my friends, Harley, Shuri and Ned,” they all say some version of hello, “and my girlfriend Michelle-"
“My friends call me MJ.”
“So, we are going to play Crimes Against Humanity, as requested by a friend of MJ's, her name is Mirabel, you can follow her on Instagram at @tr.mirabel.”
Peter winks... at me?
Peter I swear to fucking God did you just break the fourth wall without my permission?
He’s smiling as the rest look confused, “Calm down Ellie, you knew this was going to happen.”
Peter, you can’t do that, I’m the author, this is my fucking story you piece of sh-
– Technical Difficulties; Stand By –
“Okay, so let’s get into it,” Peter says, dragging the box towards him, “I must confess I’ve never played before.”
“Also, it should be noted,” Shuri says, suddenly, her space buns flopping as she tilts her head, “That we’re all Gen Z, so our humour is fucked up as it is, but this is gonna be fun.”
“Also, Peter, despite being the least sexual person in this room, makes the dirtiest jokes, so be prepared for that.”
“Oh God,” Harley moans, “Why did I agree to this? This is such a bad idea.”
“Shut up whining you little bitch,” Peter said, shuffling the cards, “Okay, draw ten cards!”
They do, and suddenly, Michelle was placing down a black card.
“I’m nervous,” Ned mutters as she begins to read aloud.
MJ grins, “Help, my son is, blank.”
“Help, my son is a self sacrificial, red and blue wearing vigilante,” Ned mutters under his breath.
“Tony be like,” Shuri adds on, laughing.
The teens shuffle through their cards, Shuri and Ned bursting into a fit of giggles at their own cards. Peter tilts his head in confusion, a d gives his card face down to MJ, who already has hers and Harley's in her hand. Ned and Shuri's laughter eventually subside, and they place their cards in the pile.
“Okay,” she mutters, before raising her voice, “Help, my son is...” she flips over the first card, “Casually suggesting a threesome-"
The whole table burst out laughing, Ned’s on his back, hands on his eyes.
“Oh, dear God,” MJ says as they all calm down, then flips over the next card, “OH DEAR GOD.”
“It’s worse than incest?!” Harley says through giggles.
MJ's response is high-pitched, “Its so much worse.”
She’s giggling and crying, and trying to steel herself to read the card. She breathes out, “I got this. Help, my son is jerking off into a pool filled with children’s tears.”
She couldn’t get through the sentence without laughing, by the end, her inhales sound like pterodactyl screeches. Ned had fallen onto his back again, Shuri was slapping the table while laughing silently, her face scrunched up, Harley had got up and started walking around, and Peter was shaking his head, inhaling sharply.
The camera cuts.
“Help, my son is,” MJ turns over the third card,
“Isn’t that copywrited?”
“Shut up, Peter.”
“And lastly,” MJ says, sending sharp looks to Peter and Harley, “Help, my son is... Danny DeVito.”
Laughs erupted once more.
“Danny DeVito won.”
“That’s mine,” Shuri says.
The camera cuts.
“What’s a girl’s best friend?” Shuri says.
“The downfall of man and overpowering the government.”
The cards are handed in. “What’s a girls best friend? Spontaneous human combustion.”
“Daniel Radcliffe's delicious asshole.”
“Genetically engineered super soldiers.”
“Your weird brother.” The giggles surface again, before Shuri continues, “I like the Daniel Radcliffe one.”
“That’s mine,” Peter says.
It looks like they’ve been playing for a while. Ned and Shuri are more laying down than sitting, Michelle has her head on Peters shoulder and Harley is giggling. The sky outside the floor to ceiling windows behind them is completely dark. Peter is collecting the cards.
“Hi, kiddos, I brought food,” Happy bursts through the door, carrying McDonald’s bags.
“Yes! I’ve always wanted to try McDonald’s!”
“Don’t get your hopes up Shuri.”
They serve out the food and continue, Happy lingering a the edge of the frame cause he’s never seen this game before.
“Okay,” Peter says, after swallowing his burger, “What ended my last relationship? Lactation... Loki, the trickster God... Men... and Masturbating in a robe like a rich person.”
The laughed again, Happy looking mortified and scurrying out the room, which made them laugh even more. Some text on the screen appeared, reading ‘I need therapy’.
The camera cuts again, and this time Harley has a black card in his hand, but this time, Tony Stark is sat in between him and Peter.
“Tony decided he wanted to join us considering he doesn’t know anything about cards against humanity, so he’s gonna watch this round and play the next. Say ‘Hi', Mr. Stark.”
“Hi, Mr. Stark.”
“Who made you this way?” Peter deadpanned, but before Tony could respond, Harley yelled, “Anyways, let’s get on with it, Today on Mythbusters, we fund out how long blank, can withstand blank.
The cards were shuffled around and collected, Tony trying to peek at both Harley's and Peter's, but both boys turning to face the other way.
“Today on Mythbusters, we find out how long...” Turned over the first two cards, “Barack Obama can withstand-" he clapped a hand over his mouth, tears springing to his eyes as his body shook with silent giggles, “Benedict Cumberbatch.”
Tony’s eyes shot out of his head when he heard, but everyone around him was chuckling.
“Today on Mythbusters, we find out how long... Loki, the trickster God, can withstand heteronormativity.”
“Not very long.”
“Today on Mythbusters, we find out how long... Robert Downey Jr can withstand... 50,000 volts straight to the nipples.”
“The definition of ‘ROFL'-"
“-Today on Mythbusters, we find out how long... that ass can withstand-" He cuts himself off, somewhere between laughing and crying.
“Read the card, Harley.”
“Yeah, Harley,” Michelle says, “Read the card.”
After some woeful hesitation, he manages to get out,
“Inserting a Mason jar into my anus.”
Harley just rests his arms on the table, his head on top, and without looking, pushes the last cards towards the centre of the table, where Ned shouts in triumph.
“Your generation is so weird,” Tony days after composing himself, standing up.
“Wait, I thought you wanted to play?” Peter says.
“I’m okay kid, I’ll be back in with some ice cream in a sec.”
“It better be Ben and Jerry's, Stark,” MJ calls after him, then, as a second thought, “Or Häagen Dazs.”
When he returned, he placed the ice cream on the table, bidding the children goodnight, and laughing to himself.
“-yan Gosling riding in on a white horse.”
The sound of all five kids laughing was music to his ears.