“The Web” by Steven Bereznai from The Lavender Menace: Tales of Queer Villainy, Northwest Press, 2013. Edited by Tom Cardamone.

Daytripper has just gained admittance to the Academy of Super Heroic Excellence. This milestone is made all the sweeter by the presence of Arachnid, a dark and brooding fellow student. There’s chemistry between them, or so Daytripper thinks, anyway. It turns out most of his perceptions are wrong. Nothing is as black and white as it seems.

I loved the dark undertone of this story. Daytripper starts out believing he’s a good guy, and ends up, I think, still one, only in much the same way as Batman or Elliot Stabler on Law n’ Order. They, too, have been through some $%@# and have no intention of taking any more from the likes of you. Or, to put it another way – seduction, treachery and deceit never go out of style. This story has all that, in spades. It’s great fun.