This is last chapter. Took me a while, but I think that I did a pretty good job. Didn't want to cut it off here, but I'm losing my muse; less frequent updates owing to less free time, less plot development in each chapter, and so on.

Blah da di dah, no superheroes in the cave, my goat disapproves!

Oh, and this chapter has really big spoilers for Amazing Spiderman 2. Just letting you know. Bye.

She had come rushing out of the control building as soon as she could, fearing for Peter's safety after the violence of that evening. He was all right, thank goodness, and their eyes had met in an instant with simultaneous sighs of relief.

Peter heaved himself from where he had lain on the asphalt, a deep breath escaping his lungs through his mask. He looked exhausted.

Gwen made her way closer to him, a skip in her step and a wide grin on her face.

He called out to her, a smile in his voice, "I think we can still make your flight!"

They had both frozen as a chilling laugh echoed through the air, the hair on the back of her neck had risen, and it had all gone downhill from there.

"Sir, disturbance at the power station."

Director Fury took a sip of his coffee, and turned to Coulson tiredly, "What is it?"

"Spiderman has been sighted there, along with Max Dillon." He lifted his tablet, revealing a grainy image of the Oscorp funded site. The picture was all telling.

The stoic director spat his drink everywhere, and an agent sniggered off to the side, "Tell the Avengers to get their asses in the Quinjet." He stated bluntly. "Whoever's available; Rogers, Stark, I don't care, just make it fast."

Coulson gave a nod, and hurried off to comply.

Fury turned to the agent who had laughed earlier, vengeance in his eye. "Something to say, kid?"

Peter's eyes were wide with fear to match hers, the last chime of the bell tower still ringing in his ears, and his hand reaching out even as he knew it was too late. She screamed, her plaintive cry jarring him into movement as he shoved his former best friend away, paying no attention to him as Peter dove after the girl he loved. The bell tower was crumbling to pieces, the fragile harmony that had kept it as a whole for these long years disturbed, and the cogs rained down around them as they reached for each other.

Peter pressed the button that activated the web-shooters; web-shooters that had been fixed by none other than the girl that now needed his help. He only hoped he could repay the debt, daring to believe for just a moment that this could all be okay after all.

Then the grim reality came rushing back as their gazes met, the web connected, and her eyes closed forever.

For hours he had just watched her, refusing to believe in the vacancy of her expression, nor the slow trickle of blood that wound down her face. He had cradled her head, embracing her for the last time as if she wasn't just an empty husk, a shell of herself, until the screeching of sirens had broken him out of his stupor.

Peter left one last kiss on her forehead before they parted ways. The finality of that last kiss still haunted him. He had attended the funeral of course, but it had seemed surreal, lacking, as though seen through a stranger's eyes. That kiss had been a final goodbye, not just to her cold body; it had felt like much more, as though her spirit had lingered for that kiss, warming the skin beneath his lips, bidding him a final farewell in return. He had loved Gwen, and Gwen had loved him, and he was content in that knowledge.

His team-mate elbowed him in the side, "Hey, kid?" He felt six pairs of eyes looking at him in concern. "You alright?"

"Fine." He replied after a silence. "Just… thinking."

"Okay. You sure about this, kid? You can still back out."

"I'm alright. Let's go." He looked at them all, no regret lingering on his features. They nodded at him, and he returned the gesture.

"Avengers, assemble."