| Moment of Awesome: Bobby Drake/Iceman: When Miles Morales comes to Bobby's work to talk about Serious Matters, cue an extremely awkward conversation.
Miles took one of the chairs, but found he could not sit down comfortably. He blamed the crappy chair and not the tremors running through his body. "Okay, mira," he started, standing back up. "I've been thinking a lot since the party, you know? Like, a lot. And . . . I owe you an apology. A really big one. I crossed a line and made you uncomfortable, and I'm sorry."
"The party, the party..." Bobby rubbed his chin as he tried to recall exactly what Miles was talking about, knowing that neither of them were buying it. "Oh. Oh, yeah, that one." He waved a hand at Miles, leaning back further into the couch. "Nah, no apology needed, man. It was just, y'know." He shrugged as if it were no big deal, but wasn't quite making eye contact with his former roomie. "Stuff happened."
The faux casualness, inability to keep eye contact, and atypically high voice tone all made it obvious to Miles that Bobby did not actually believe what he said. He was still distressed, Miles concluded, so clearly his apology, however genuine, was not accepted. Miles frowned and continued. "No, I . . . Stuff happened 'cuz I wasn't thinking. If I was thinking then I'd've realized I . . . Jesus, I thought this would be easier to say. It was so easy when I talked to Gabo about it."
"None of us were thinking, not about... that kinda stuff." He rubbed the back of his neck. "I mean, dude. It's a typical thing that happens at these parties, the whole bottle stuff, we just didn't plan to, y'know." Bobby looked around to see if anyone else had come into or near the break room before continuing. "The whole lip thing. It's fine, honestly." He really didn't blame Miles for it happening, he was just having a hell of a time wrestling with himself over what it meant, and the kind of thoughts it had him thinking.
"It was a good kiss." Miles's gaze fell to the floor and he sat down listlessly, feeling the energy drain out of him as he made this confession. "I liked kissing you."
Bobby didn't know what to say to that, especially the second part. He'd been wondering how Miles felt about the whole thing, and now he knew. That didn't make it any easier; if anything, it made it about a billion times more difficult, truth be told. His mind strayed to math classes of yore, to examples of trying to solve both sides of an equation, simplifying here and canceling things out there. He couldn't follow the calculus back then and he sure as hell couldn't follow it now. Miles may have solved one side of the equation, but Bobby was feeling hopelessly lost with his part right about now.
He had to answer though, had to say something.
"I..." he stammered. "I... didn't hate it," finished Bobby nervously. "It's all a little strange, I guess. I don't know." He gave another noncommittal shrug and opened his mouth to say more, then closed it just as abruptly.
It may have been a trite comic book cliche, but right now, Miles wished he were facing Doctor Octopus or stuck back in Limbo. He could manage that sort of danger. Any fool can take a stand against villainy, mundane or super. That did not require the kind of bravery he needed for what he would say next. The courage to be honest about oneself, especially to someone so cherished, was something entirely different.
Miles took a deep breath, held it for a second, and let it out before looking up at his friend. "Bobby, I'm bisexual."
"Does that mean what I think it does?" asked Bobby after a few seconds of silence. He was pretty sure he knew but this was all coming at him a little too fast. His usual approach in life of cracking wise or making a joke wasn't going to work here, which made things a little harder to handle too, but he knew this was important.
"Which... if you're... that, and if you liked... that... then..." Even basic relationship arithmetic was stumping him at the moment, it seemed.
The threat of cerebral meltdown would have been funny if this encounter were not so urgent to Miles. He finally found the one thing that stopped Bobby's seemingly never-ending stream of dad jokes and bad puns. And all it took was admitting "I like girls and guys, too. I . . . like you." Miles almost could not believe he finally said that out loud. But that finally broke the dam and more words spilled forth uncontrollably. "I didn't think so at first, I thought it's just, you know, I haven't had a girlfriend in a while and we were drunk and having a fun time but then I thought about it more and it's not just like crossed wires in my brain. I like hanging out with you. I feel good around you. I think you're good looking. More than that, actually. And I know, I know it's just me and you don't think that and it's fine. It's really fine. There's girls I liked who didn't like me back so it's not new. But I have to be honest with you, you know what I mean? I lied to you before and it was terrible and I don't wanna make that mistake again. So . . ."
"So..." Bobby took a deep breath and tried to process all of that. Some of it got through, other parts were gonna take a bit longer to parse. "I mean... dude, I like you too. You're a cool dude, I like hanging out with you, and you're..." This was where it got more difficult. "...you're a guy, and I know I like girls, but guys, I... it's not something I've been into before," he said, studying the back of his fingers on his right hand. "Maybe I do too, you were the first one I ever did... stuff with." He was trying hard not to keep saying 'you know' and just trailing off, so Bobby hoped that 'stuff' was an improvement, "And I don't think a guy has ever liked me before, not that I know of, so all of this is pretty new in, like, a bajillion ways." Which didn't make it bad, but it damn well made it confusing. He ran a hand through his hair and exhaled loudly, finally looking up at Miles for the first time in a while.