Bonnie arrived 'home' a week before the twin's fourth birthday party. She kept them up until after midnight, and they all fell asleep on her bed. The twins were too tired and cranky for preschool the next day, so Bonnie took them shopping for clothes and their birthday gifts after a nap.
Kim issued fairly brief directions before she let the girls go shopping with Bonnie, “No makeup and no pierced ears.”
Shego's directions were slightly broader, “No body piercings of any kind -- and no tattoos.”
After shopping Bonnie stopped at the Post Office to collect held mail and spent most of the evening sorting it.
Everyone else was already in the kitchen when she came downstairs the next morning.
“God, you're becoming a sloth,” Shego told Bonnie after the twins greeted her. “You must have slept in until what? Seven in the morning?”
“I was up late going through the mail,” Bonnie yawned. She gave Ron a kiss on the cheek, “What's for breakfast?”
“Anything you want.”
“You know,” Kim mentioned to Shego, “I don't think Ron has ever said that to us when we asked what's for breakfast.”
The actress stuck her tongue out at the two of them, “You've never had Valentine's Day plans with him like mine.”
“Hello? Just before the twin's birthday, remember?”
“Of course we remember. It's our third anniversary. Ron did you forget you were going to babysit?”
“Oh, darn. Look, K and S, can I get out of that? Bonnie has plans, with a capital P.”
“You wouldn't hold him to that, would you?” Bonnie pleaded.
Shego sighed, “I guess not. We can find another babysitter.”
“Thanks,” Bonnie giggled and gave Shego a kiss on the cheek. “Don't wait up for us that night.”
After breakfast Kim and Shego discussed child care as they got dressed. “I'm making the plans for dinner,” Shego complained. “Can you find it in your copious free time to find a babysitter?”
“No way, I'm--”
“too busy saving the world,” the pale woman finished for her. “Look, Princess, I'm busy too. I'm trying to learn all the stuff at the office they didn't teach me in law school, plus starting to study for the bar exam--”
“Okay, okay. You're busy too. There's got to be somebody.”
“Any high school kids in your church who can stay up late or sleep over if necessary?”
“Not this close to V-Day. The good ones have all been booked and I wouldn't want the others. Zita?”
“She'd do it. She feels like she owes us. But I really don't want to take advantage of her. Besides, she may be busy -- I haven't talked with her in a couple weeks. How about your folks?”
“I know they have plans. I wished we'd known earlier. I'll bet your mom would have flown in and stayed for the birthday party. A shame Joss went away to college and took Bego with her.”
“Hey, Wade said he was going to try and visit her on Valentine's Day.”
Kim paused before asking, “Should I be happy?”
“Give him some slack. You've been around enough geniuses you know they can get quirky. Speaking of geniuses, do the boys in the garage have dates?”
“I don't know if they have dates, but I don't want them to babysit. Not after they nearly got lost in the basement with the girls last time.”
“Tara? If they're going out we could take the girls over and pay their babysitter -- or have Jason and Jessica for a sleepover here.”
“No, Tara's leaving the kids with her folks.”
“You're not giving me any help here, Cupcake. It looks like we're down to Helen and Drakken.”
“No! I won't have a dead woman or a blue man watching my babies.”
“They're not exactly babies anymore.”
“They're always going to be my babies.” Kim sighed, “I'll ask if Jim or Tim can do it. They owe me for all the times I had to babysit them… Maybe we can lock the door to the basement?”
“Oh, real smart. That just dares them to go down. Maybe we could chain the door open?”
“You're convinced the time-space anomaly only happens when the door is opened? I'm not sure about that. What happens if it can kick in anytime and the door is open?”
“A year and a half and it's only happened when the door--”
“And we've only noticed it when we opened the door.”
“Look, you've said you'd ask if one of them could do it. They're probably scared enough after the last time they'll behave.”
“Okay, I'll ask my brothers. It's probably safer if we just get one. The girls will keep one too busy to cause problems. But I'm going to be too busy worrying to have fun while we're out.”
Shego backed Kim against the wall and went gently to work on the redhead's neck and throat, murmuring between kisses and lovebites, “Then I'll just have to work extra hard to distract you on our anniversary.”
Looking flushed Kim finally pushed her away, “Sounds great, but we'd better stop now or I'll be late for saving the world and you'll be late for the office.”
Shego looked a little disappointed, “Some days I think I need to steal something to get your attention.”
Kim laughed, “Save it for our anniversary. Oh, but I'm willing to give a couple loud moans now to make Bonnie think we're having a quickie before we leave.”
“With the girls in their room?”
“Now who's being a stick-in-the-mud?”
Shego left the bedroom calling, “Girls, give mommy and Bonnie a kiss, time to go.”
When Shego got home with the girls after work Bonnie was out in the driveway in a tattered old Middleton U sweatshirt throwing a football back and forth with Ron. They moved to one side and she parked in the garage and sent the girls out to harass Ron and Bonnie while she went to the apartments above the garage to see if Jim or Tim was in and had agreed to sit.
Ron threw her a pass as she left the garage and laughed when some mud splattered her face.
“Careful, Stoppable, I just had this suit dry cleaned. Hey, Rockwaller, keeping up the glamorous Hollywood image?”
“That's what's so nice about being home. I can dress like the rest of you riff-raff and don't have to worry about my picture showing up in some scandal sheet.”
“So you're really going to keep renting the room?”
“Absolutely. Like I said, this is home.”
The pale woman stopped between the two of them on the way to the house, “Oh, since we gave up Ron without a fight for our anniversary, I want to make sure you're planning to help chaperon the party.”
“Exactly how big a fourth birthday party are you planning?”
“It, uh, got a little out of hand,” Shego confessed. “I go to a small synagogue, three kids their age are invited--”
“I know. Eight kids from their Sunday School class at Kim's church…”
Bonnie looked slightly nervous.
“And ten kids from preschool.”
“Don't forget Jason and Jessica,” Ron reminded her.
Bonnie did some fast math, “Twenty-three kids?”
“Twenty-five with the twins.”
“No way! I'm heading back to LA.”
“You wouldn't do that to us,” Ron said.
“Come on, Tara will be here, and Kim's mom and dad,” Shego told her. “A couple Methodist moms may stay. Felix and Justine will be over, and we're ordering pizza and playing poker that night.”
“Oh, yeah, if we have any strength left after the party. Here are my non-negotiables, I want a back-rub that night and breakfast in bed the next morning.”
“I think Kim and I can do that for you.”
“Not you,” Bonnie laughed. “Him,” she pointed to Ron.
“What do you say, Stoppable? Think you could force yourself to get your hands on one of the hot new stars of daytime television?”
“I suppose… If I have to.”
“Why, you--” Bonnie bent over and dipped both hands in the cold mud. Ron knew what was happening and took off running, with Bonnie in hot pursuit. The twins laughed as the pair rounded the corner of the house.
“Ah, young love,” Shego sighed. “Into the house, girls. Nothing to see out here. And if there is, you aren't allowed to watch.”
Ron and Bonnie took showers and changed clothes before dinner that evening. The meal was winding down when the phone rang. “Ignore it,” Shego suggested.
“Can't, they may need me to--”
“Save the world,” Ron, Bonnie, and Shego all said together.
“I wonder who saved the world before Kim,” Bonnie asked.
“I think she has a Messiah complex,” Shego added as Kim picked up the phone and said hello.
Shego was in a position to watch Kim's face and body language as the redhead spoke on the phone. She noticed as Kim paled and leaned against the counter for support. “Yes,” the redhead spoke into the phone. “That's right, this Saturday. … The kids should be gone by four. … Four-thirty? You really don't have to, you know. … No, that's fine. See you around four-thirty.” The Global Justice agent was trembling as she sat down at the table.
“What's wrong, Princess?”
Kim addressed her daughters, “Do you remember Holly who came to visit last spring?”
“Holly… Is she the funny lady Eemah brought home?”
Shego's eyes went wide at the memory, and Ron paled also.
“Yes,” Kim told the girls, “she promised to stop by after the party with a present for you.”
The girls let out little shrieks of joy and Kim asked them to go watch TV or go to their room for a minute and let the grownups talk.
Shego stared, wide-eyed, at Kim. “I forgot all about her. I hoped she had forgotten all about us.”
“Who?” Bonnie demanded.
“No such luck,” Kim told Shego. “She's been working on their gift.”
“Who,” Bonnie repeated, raising her voice slightly.
“God, no!” Ron moaned. “I don't even know what it is and I'm not ready for it.”
Bonnie leaned over and grabbed Kim by the shoulders, turning the redhead to her and shaking her slightly, “Who is Holly?”
“Amy Hall,” Ron said in a hollow voice.
“AKA DNAmy,” Shego added. “I helped her out last spring. World-famous geneticist with a serious lack of ethical standards.”
“Is she the one who,” Bonnie paused trying to think of a verb that worked. She rejected 'help' as not exactly accurate and finally just continued the sentence without a verb, “… with the twins?”
“That's her,” Kim confirmed, “Shego called her their fairy godmother.”
“I know she was trying to hurt you, but what's the problem with her coming now?”
“She promised to make a pet for the girls.”
Bonnie paused, the only work she'd seen from Amy was the twins. “I still don't see the problem.”
“The woman makes monsters,” Ron told her.
“You could regift?” Bonnie suggested.
“Don't think so,” Shego sighed. “I doubt any shelter in Middleton would take it. And I'll bet money the girls fall in love with whatever it is.”
“So that means…?”
“We're all doomed,” Kim said.
Author's Note: This chapter refers back to the story “An Equinox Carol.”