Spider-Man fights a criminal using a high-tech mech suit stolen from the military, and with little success (lamenting that all he really wanted that day was to get Mary Jane some earrings for her birthday.) His webbing can't stick to the suit and on top of that a bus full of innocent people arrives nearby, making the chances for collateral damage or a hostage situation high; Spidey decides to at least hold him off, telling him to once more to stop. Noticing the fear in his eyes upon stating this, and that his [the criminal's] eyes are directed above him, Spidey turns around to see the Silver Surfer.
The Surfer effortlessly obliterates the mech-suit using a cosmic bolt. Spidey asks what exactly his business is in the city, and he replies that he sensed innocents in danger, and helped, but must now take leave. Due to the web-slinger's persistence as to what was troubling him, Surfer reveals his dilemma. Noticing what appears to be an injury on the Surfer's arm, Spidey offers to assist him but he dismisses it as nothing.
Surfer desires to do something for his adoptive home before he leaves for good, hoping to fix the world's problems to a degree. Figuring Spider-Man's a human, he asks him what he should do. Going down a list of ideas including ways of solving poverty and war, in the end all methods have dire consequences, solving the problem only temporarily, so Spidey inquires about the Surfer's board.
The Surfer explains that he uses a board as a car or vehicle would limit his view of the wonders of the cosmos, creating a "shell," while the board allows travel unfettered. Radd offers Spidey the chance to see what he described with his own eyes by investing a portion of the Power Cosmic, and while tempted he declines, and asks if someone else could take the offer. Surfer agrees to allow Mary Jane to experience the power Cosmic, and his board takes her through the unknown reaches of space, with MJ feeling unable to describe just how great it was other than feeling free. Seeing the two embrace, Surfer remembers his past with his lover Shalla Bal. Just before the Surfer leaves however, Spider-Man tells him that he may have found an answer to his question.
The Surfer spreads the Power Cosmic to the entire Earth, allowing everyone on the planet to experience true peace for a whole five minutes; any longer and it could kill him. Fulfilling his wish to bring peace to the world (for 5 minutes,) Surfer decides to continue his journey, after Peter takes off his mask and thanks him as a friend. Surfer departs, leaving Peter to watch, stating "Requiescat in pace my friend. You've earned it."