Carousel of Time

Chapter 2


King in Yellow

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TITLE: Heroes

AUTHOR: King in Yellow

DISCLAIMER: Disney owns the various characters from the Kim Possible series. Any and all registered trade names property of their respective owners. Cheap shots at celebrities constitute fair usage.

SUMMARY: How does one become a hero? When do you cease to be one? Kim reflects on some of the forces which shaped her. My entry in the recent GWA Guess the Author contest whose theme was 'training'.

TYPE: Kim/Shego, Ron

RATING: US: PG-13 / DE: 12

Words: 2096

“Come upstairs, you need to see the stuff my mom sent home with me.”

“Oh, man, you're not going to make me look at any photo albums, are you?”

“I don't think there are any photo albums -- mom would have kept those for herself. But you'd be surprised by some of the things I'm finding.”

Kim took the chair and Ron sat cross-legged on the floor -- which invited the little red head to jump on top of him and give him a big hug, “Daddy! I love you.”

“Love you too, sweetie. Give me some sugar.” She giggled and gave him a kiss. “Now up on the bed with sister. Your mommy says Grandma Jean sent all kinds of fun stuff home with her.”

“Really fun stuff, like treasure?” her sister asked.

“More like things from when your mommy was a little girl,” Kim explained.

“That doesn't sound like fun.”

“Well the two of you don't have to be in here watching us.”

“We'll stay.”

Ron reached into a bag and pulled out a Pandaroo, still in its original wrapper. “Hey, what's this?”

“Oh, mom told me about that night. I couldn't find my Pandaroo. I refused to sleep. Finally dad went out and found a department store that was still open so he could buy me a new one. But I didn't want a new one -- I wanted my Pandaroo. We found him the next day, out in the back yard. I never let him out of my room again.”

“Is that him on the rocking chair?”

“Yes, that's the real Pandaroo.”

“He's looking a little threadbare -- or was Threadbear another Cuddle Buddy™? Should you toss him and open up this one?”

“Ron! You're missing the point. My old one is the real one. The unopened one means nothing. Honestly, didn't your parents ever read The Velveteen Rabbit to you?”

“Afraid not.”

“Well, I'm going to buy a copy and make you read it to the girls.”

“So, we keep the worn out one and toss the unopened one?”

“That's right.”

Ron shook his head, the logic escaping him. But two small girls began shouting, “I want it!” “Give it to me.” Ron tossed the box onto the bed and the box and cellophane were ripped off the new Pandaroo and the battle for possession began.

“Quiet, you two. We'll decide later.”

Kim pulled over a different box and opened it up, “Ohmygawd! Ron, look.”

“What is it mommy?”

“It's my old coonskin cap.” Ron explained. “I had that for years, then it disappeared. Looks like your mommy borrowed it and never gave it back.”

“No, you probably left it… You're right; I borrowed it for Halloween one year. Sorry.”

He put it on his head, and Kim joined the girls in laughing. “See, he's grown up a lot since he wore that hat.”

He tossed it up on the bed. The girls admired how soft the fur was, but when they realized it had once been a living creature they squealed and each of them kept throwing it off herself -- and onto her sister.

Ron and Kim let the coonskin battle rage quietly while then kept digging through history.

As Ron flipped through a pile of papers he observed, “Looks like someone could never throw away a test or paper when she got a hundred percent.”

“You never kept any of your quizzes and tests?”

“Well, I never got a hundred percent on anything.”

“You can throw all of that out. I don't think I need to prove I can spell.”

He suddenly paused as he flipped through the papers, “This is interesting. Hey, Kim, you want to explain this?”

Kim took what Ron handed her without any idea what it was, but her stomach knotted as she looked at the photo, a ton of painful memories flooding over her. The picture was of a young Shego, probably not more than fifteen, and it was inscribed, “Kim, Keep on fighting! Shego.”

Kim stared at the picture for a minute, then said softly, “I thought I burned this years ago

Fourteen Years Ago…

“Daddy! Did you just see that story on the news?”

“What story?”

“About a new hero!”

“Sorry, I missed it Kimmie-cub, what did the story say?”

“It's in Chicago! And she's a girl!”

“Are girls allowed to be heroes?” he teased her.

“Girls can be anything they want to be,” she sniffed.

“Good answer, Kimmie,” he laughed and mussed her red hair. “And you can do anything you want to do.”

“I want to be a hero! And I want to see more pictures of her. I think they said her name was Shego.”

“That's a silly name for a hero.”

“Daaad! The two guys on Team Go are named Hego and Mego.”

“Can I say those are silly names for heroes?”

“No, you can't. 'Cause heroes can do anything they want to do.”

“I thought heroes had to obey the rules.”

“You're being mean. Of course heroes obey the rules, and are honest, and help people. And I'm going to be a hero!”

“Heroes are honest?”


“So, how did that chocolate syrup really get on the counter in the kitchen? Jim and Tim deny all knowledge.”

“Well… Ron thought we could make sundaes after school yesterday.”

“I wonder why Ron thought that.”

“Maybe 'cause I told him mommy bought ice cream and chocolate syrup at the store.”

Hoping to change the subject from the photo Kim exclaimed, “Look at this,” and held up a handmade leather wallet. The letters KAP had been embossed on the leather.

“Oh, bad memories Kim. My first summer at camp. That was the summer that made me what I am today. I was a normal kid until that nightmare.”

“That's not true, I've known you since you were four. You were never normal.”

“Ah, you're just saying that to make me feel better.”

The red head, who had put aside her revulsion of the old coonskin cap and was now wearing it, bounced up and down on the bed when she saw the wallet, “Can I have it? Can I have it? Can I have it?”

“Will you let sister have the Pandaroo?”


“Okay, catch.”

Thirteen Years Ago…

“Are you sure you don't want to go to Camp Wannaweep with me?” Ron asked again for the seventieth time.

“No,” Kim grinned, “My nana is paying for me to go to Hero Camp! We're going to rappel down cliffs and jump from airplanes, and rescue beached whales, and fight forest fires, and, and… And I don't know what else. But one of the counselors listens for emergency broadcasts and we go out and do neat stuff. I hear we're even going to have a real retired Superhero there!”

“And your nana wants you to go?”

“Yeah, isn't it great?”

“I heard my dad and mom talking. My bubbe wanted to send me to Jewish camp, but mom said no or I'd come back too frum.”

“What does that mean?”

“I'm not sure. But mom and dad said I'm going to a regular camp. And I'm going to swim, and canoe, and make leather wallets, and, and… I'm going to miss you and I promise to write you every day.”

“I'll write you every day too.”

“And I'll make you a wallet.”

“You made me a lanyard with a whistle on it at camp that summer. I don't know if we'll find that in here or not. I used it when I was coaching the tweebs in soccer. I'm guessing they burned it after I stopped being their coach.”

“I warned you, too competitive for your own good.”

“That's silly. You should put your best effort into anything you do. How can you be too competitive?”

“You manage. You could never stand being number two at anything. Do you remember soccer in Jr. High gym class?”

Kim smiled, “I remember. It was when I met Bonnie.”

“It wasn't a good meeting,” Ron told the girls. “Bonnie had been to soccer camp and was, like, the best soccer player at the school--”

“The best girl?” a small voice asked.

“The best, period. She was good. And mommy had never played soccer before in her life. But after two weeks of soccer in gym class mommy was better. It made Bonnie mad. She and mommy didn't like each other for a long time.”

“It's called skills transfer,” Kim told them. “While I hadn't played soccer I had a lot of other skills that were important for the game. I had stamina and I was good with my feet. And I wasn't better than Bonnie after two weeks, but it was close. It took me three weeks.”

Ron performed a loud stage whisper to the girls, “I bet Bonnie remembers it a lot differently from mommy.” The girls giggled appreciatively and Kim went back to sorting.

After a couple minutes of silent sorting Kim spoke again, “Mom kept a box of my things for herself. When I looked in I saw she had the top of my first cheerleading uniform.”

“How did you ever get I into cheerleading anyway? I can remember you on swim team -- but knowing how to swim seemed like something like a hero needed to know to rescue people. How did cheerleading tie in?”

“I'm not really sure. I think it was dad's idea. But you know how competitive I am. Once I got started I had to be team captain.”

Twelve Years Ago…

“James, you are being silly.”

“I am not.”

“You are. You wanted Kim to be able to defend herself -- she's probably the best eleven year old in the nation in the martial arts. You let your mother send her to that hero camp last summer and she's going again this summer… I'd like to know how your mother knew about it and why we had to go through security clearance for Kim to attend. But after all that you're now worried that she is too butch?”

“I never said the B word! I said too much of a tomboy. She spends too much time wanting to be a hero. She needs to do something more feminine… Like baton twirling or cheerleading.”

“I thought you said there were other girls in the Rocket Booster Club.”

“There was one, her name was Justine Flanner. But she and Kim never hit it off and she dropped out. She said it wasn't rocket science. I mean, how can rocket science not be rocket science?”

“Don't take it personally, dear.”

Kim found them talking in the kitchen a little later.

“Dad, could Ron come with me to Hero Camp this year?”

“I don't know, Kimmie. Does he want to go?”

“Well, he wants to be with me. And he hated the camp he went to last year. Nana told me that she could help get him in. But you have to talk with his mom and dad.”

“I'll give Mr. Stoppable a call. But Kimmie, there is something I want you to do for me.”

“What's that?”

“I'd like for you to try out for cheerleader this fall.”


“Because you just have boys in your martial arts classes, and there are only boys in the Rocket Booster Club, and it seems like you don't have any friends who are girls.”

Kim thought for a minute. She had heard Bonnie bragging about how she would be trying out for cheerleader this fall. It would be fun to beat Bonnie to a spot on the squad. “Okay, I promise. Now will you call Mr. Stoppable?”

“Okay. Are you sure this Hero Camp is what you really want?”

“I'm sure. I'm going to be a hero, just like Shego.”

Kim looked again at the picture Ron had found. Even if she could avoid talking about it with him, she couldn't erase the discovery from her own mind. “I mean, I don't remember exactly after all these years, but I think I told dad something about how I was going to be a hero, just like Shego.”

Then, the child moved ten times 'round the seasons
Skated over ten clear frozen streams
Words like, “When you're older”, must appease her
And promises of someday make her dreams

And the seasons they go 'round and 'round
And the painted ponies go up and down
We're captive on the carousel of time
We can't return we can only look behind
From where we came,
and go round and round and round
In the circle game

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