But Redbeet is saying the truth: she is unwell. She’s having a fit. She’s struggling and begs:
“NO, NO, NO, LEAVE ME ALONE. AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAH!”
Her grating, ghastly scream surprises them all. Redbeet has turned green. They believe her now.
Spidey, puzzled and pissed off orders them to stop. God knows what tricks beetles can come up with, he wonders. As fate has it, the unexpected arrives feet first: a reddish insect scarcely reminiscent of a beetle is pushing its way out of its mother’s belly.
“Dad,” says one baby spider, “aren’t beetles supposed to come out of larvae?”
“I don’t know, Spidey Jnr. no 9, this one is definitely doing things in a different way. These days, anything that can happen will happen. Besides, I’m out of touch with progress on genetics.”
But a second insect-supposed-to-be-a-beetle is now crawling on top of its brother already on the floor, just beside their pushing mother.
“Is it a boy or a girl?” Redbeet attempts, out of breath.
“But Dad,” says another young spider, “beetles haven’t changed their birth giving habits, it’s got nothing to do with the progress of genetics.”
“It’s a boy and his sister,” answers another of Spidey’s kids from the back.
“I don’t know what’s true or not anymore,” says Spidey, “I’ve heard all sorts of theories about it. It doesn’t really matter does it? This stupid beetle is giving birth to fully formed creatures that ought to be in her own image but…”
“I don’t feel well,” Redbeet continues.
“Keep pushing” Spidey instructs.
“You’re going to eat my babies, won’t you?” a desperate Redbeet asks.
“Dad,” says another young spider, Redbeet’s babies are kind of furry.”
A third baby is born.
“Are you done?” Spidey asks.
“How would I know?”
“You still in pain?”
A fourth baby comes out.
To be continued…