After breakfast and a short explanation about what was going to happen that day, he found himself walking down the streets of Hell's Kitchen with Matt Murdock wearing slightly oversized sweatpants and a plain white tee. The sneakers Matt gave him to wear were worn and only a half size too big. But Matt stopped at a bodega on the way to his office to buy him new shoes. The only ones available in his size were red. He thought it was funny since the only other color in Matt's wardrobe outside of dark colors was red. He wiggled his toes in the shoes and smiled happily. Matt smiled at him and ruffled his hair before he paid for the shoes.
He held onto Matt's arm as they made their way down the street not because Matt needed a guide but because he was prone to becoming distracted and had gotten separated a couple of times when something caught his attention.
The last time he was distracted, he bumped into a large fellow who scared the shit out of him. He clung to the wall and couldn't decide whether to scamper up or get down and crawl away until he found a place to hide. Matt stepped in as the man shouted at him and apologized for his deaf son. The large man looked utterly embarrassed and apologized to the blind man who had the bad luck of having a deaf son. Luckily he hadn't said a word. But it took Matt a little coaxing for him to release his grip on the wall after the threat was gone. Afterward, he clung to Matt's arm as if it were a security blanket. Not that he understood what that meant. But it was part of the bank of metaphors that he knew thanks to his ancestor.
They passed up a hotdog vendor and it made him remember a time when he'd gone to Coney Island with Ben and May. The memory made him smile because now he understood the amusement park ride reference. And he could honestly say that grappling down the building with Daredevil was just as good as any ride. But the happy feeling went away just as fast as it came.
Sure the memories from his ancestor helped give him hope of an outside world when he was held prisoner at the lab. Not so much now that he was in the outside world. They were only a reminder that he'd never had a life outside of the lab. Or any life at all. His memories weren't his, they belonged to another. He really did hope that Matt's friend could help him find his ancestor. And that Peter would in turn help him with the life bit.
They arrived at a nondescript building while he was lost in thought and went up the stairs. The door they walked to was at the end of the hall. There was a sign by the door that read Nelson and Murdock Attorneys at Law. Matt opened the door and gestured for the kid to walk inside. Space wasn't very big. And there was a desk facing the door with a very pretty blonde woman sitting behind it.
"Good morning, Matt," the woman said eagerly. Then her eyes swept over to him. "Who's this? A new client?"
"Uh, not exactly," Matt said and placed a hand on his shoulder. "This is Karen Paige. She is amongst other things our legal investigator. She's the friend I told you about that could help you find your family."
"Hi," he said shyly, waving a hand to Karen who smiled and said hello.
"Karen, I know I'm asking a lot especially while we're in the middle of a case," Matt said apologetically. "But I would prefer if you could prioritize finding his family. Within reason, of course. Anything that you think I can handle that I can take off your plate, send it my way."
"Yes, of course, Matt," Karen said and gestured for the young man to have a seat in front of her desk. "Don't forget your meeting with the DA is in an hour and you have a lunch—"
"Got it, Karen, thanks," Matt said, already heading into his office. "You're in good hands, kid."
"Okay, why don't we start with you telling me a bit about yourself," Karen said, pulling out a pen and notepad.
"Sure, but what do you want to know?" he said not knowing what he was supposed to tell her. Everything he knew, well it was Peter's life, not his. He didn't know anything about himself.
"Your name for starters," Karen said smiling encouragingly.
"I...I don't have a name," he said and ran a hand over his hair.
Karen hummed and jotted something down. "Where are you from?"
"Uh, a lab. But I'm not sure where it was. I escaped and a man in a uniform found me," he said.
"A uniform? What kind of uniform?" Karen said, writing down a few more notes. She wasn't reacting to what he said in any way. She was just looking for as much information she could gather to find his family. So far she had bupkis.
"Oh! He was a policeman," he said snapping his fingers. Then the rest of the words came out in a rush after having become excited that the knowledge that was stored in his mind was finally working in his favor. "And he bought me a hamburger that was really good. And he said he was going to get me in touch with a social worker that could help me find my family. But then something really weird happened and I ended up at a hospital. I thought I was back at the lab when I came to so I tried to escape and that's when Daredevil found me and he flew me down to street level and got us a cab and took me to Matt where I met Foggy. He was really nice. Foggy was. Oh, but so was Matt. And Daredevil is awesome. Then Matt brought me here to meet you after buying me some shoes. So can you help me find my family?"
Karen heard the soft chuckles coming from Matt's office and she made a mental note to berate him later for not giving her more to go on from the get-go.
"I will do everything I can to help you. But so far, I don't have enough to start a search," Karen said. She had enough to start backtracking to the lab where he may have been held. But not enough to find his family. "I at least need a family name even if you don't know your given name."
"You mean like my ancestor's name?" he said curiously.
"Yes, an ancestor will work," Karen said with an encouraging smile.
"My ancestor's name is Peter Parker. He was born here in New York," he said and scrubbed the back of his neck. "His family currently lives in Forest Hills but I can't remember the address. Although I think I can get to the right house if I was in the right neighborhood."
He hadn't even realized that Karen was already on the computer looking up Peter Parker until he heard her mumble to herself. He looked up at her then saw her jotting a few things down.
"I found a few entries on your ancestor Peter Parker," Karen said. "The earliest record was an engagement announcement in the Daily Bugle in 1955. The couple was Teresa Ortiz and Peter Parker. In 1958 there was a birth announcement in the Bugle for a Benjamin Franklin Parker born to Mr. and Mrs. Peter Parker."
"Uncle Ben," he said softly. Karen didn't hear him. She was too busy jotting down notes and looking up more information.
"Let's see. In 1960 there was a funeral announcement for Teresa Parker survived by husband, Peter Parker; son, Benjamin Parker; and sister, Miss Millie Ortiz." Karen frowned when she found a related article for a mid-air collision between two planes above New York. One plane crashed landed in Brooklyn narrowly missing a school. Six people on the ground died that day. One being Teresa Parker, a teacher for six years in Brooklyn at a junior high. Karen jotted that down but didn't mention it aloud. "In 1978 there's a marriage announcement for Ann Miller who married Peter Parker at a Manhattan courthouse. I'm pretty sure it's the same Peter Parker because in 1981 there's a birth announcement from the same couple for Richard Laurance Parker. The same announcement includes a sibling for Richard, Ben Parker, age 21."
The articles were easier to find after that. She'd been lucky that she found them at all. They had been digitized and tagged by date, place, and name. Her original search 'Peter Parker circa 1900's' directed her to the Daily Bugle archives online. Any article with his name and surname popped up. Karen only had to search the names or dates in relation to the announcements that came up to find the extended family.
She had so much information at her fingertips. It was too easy, however. It almost seemed like someone else had done the work for her. She was simply reaping from their rewards. Because how was it possible that she found so many articles so quickly? And yet it seemed like a lot of information on the Parkers was missing. What had happened prior to the first entry? There were so little Parkers and yet, it was such a common name that she felt like there should be more articles. The thing was there probably was they were just not tagged by name. It could overload the program to have too many articles pop up at the same time. She couldn't think about that though. Not when she was close to finding the kid's family.
"In 1986 there was a funeral announcement for Peter and Ann Parker. Died suddenly in Staten Island. Survived by sons Ben and Richie also Millie Ortiz who is mentioned as Peter's sister. My god," Karen said quietly as she read how they died.
A deranged man wielding a machete injured nine people and killed two. Peter and Ann Parker. That was all the article stated about the incident. Not that it was an article. It read more like the news ticker while what was deemed more important news was given greater coverage. Was it a cover-up? For what? Who was Peter Parker? She mentally shook her head. She wrote down her questions to follow up later if it was necessary. She hoped it wasn't necessary.
She continued scouring the articles for information. She glanced at the boy who was staring out the window. But she could tell he was waiting for her to find more information about his family.
"Alright. I found a marriage announcement for one of the sons. Ben Parker married a woman named May Reilly who was originally from Boston in 1993 at a church in Queens." At this, the boy smiled and Karen did too. "And in 1999 it looks like Mary Fitzpatrick and Richard L. Parker were married. They had a son named Peter Benjamin Parker on August 27, two years later. I imagine he's about your age. Let's see if we can find a current address," Karen's face fell. "Oh no."
He didn't look at her, just kept staring out the window. I know what happened to them. Peter remembers so that means so do I. But that doesn't mean I want to relive those feelings. He couldn't complain about the situation. The woman was on the right track and she would find Peter soon. He just had to endure the emotional backlash he was feeling and act like it didn't affect him at all. He'd had practice at the lab. The professor put him through many tests. Some were more painful than others. If it wouldn't have been for the memories he'd been given he may not have lasted very long as a lab rat. And he didn't want to think about that either.
He looked at Karen and grimaced. She was thinking hard about something. She'd been doing that a lot. He knew she was keeping a lot from him and that was okay. He didn't need to know everything. He knew enough.
A/N: Most of the Parker tragedies are based on real-life events. And they worked with the timeline I was creating. There is no Teresa parker, Ben and Richard have the same mother in cannon. But I wanted to give a reason for the age gap between the two sons. Not that there can't be big age gaps with children of the same parents. It happens. But this way there was more history to the Parker Luck.