I wouldn’t say my life is something great, but it is my life. I wouldn’t trade it in for anything. I like the way things are going for the most part. Yeah, I mean, stuff does come up every now and again, but that’s the way life is. Other than that, things are fine. I suppose I should see some shit coming for the fact that things are so fine. They can’t stay this good forever, after all.
Doctor Director sighed as she went through all of the paperwork that she had to sort through. Running an elite crime fighting unit was hard work, especially when more than half of the people that worked for her were crazy in some way all in their own right. Almost every scientist that worked for her seemed to like spending their free time inhaling fumes or they just stayed locked in the laboratory too long. It would help explain why they seemed to be missing a few anyway, mentally speaking.
The officers under her command just all seemed like they needed a hug or some time on the couch while all of the rookies seemed to be crybabies or, well, also in need of some time on the couch. For those that did not fall into that category, they seemed to suffer from some kind of brain damage and no one made them aware of it. It was like everything was going to the lunatic wing of Hell around the department, but it always seemed that way. At least her personal life was not bad.
Betty felt like her personal life lately was better than it had been in a long time. She did not feel bored or lonely anymore thanks to having Leonardo around, not to mention the fact that she was still seeing Dahntay Jones, also known as Falsetto Jones. They had gotten past needing to talk about their dogs every time that they got together. They could and did speak about their jobs and interests while they were out on dates. He was an adventurous man, despite his rich and refined appearance. He would do just about anything, especially if she did it. She guessed that it was some manly thing that he had to do every daring thing that she did to avoid being shown up by his girlfriend.
Now that she was thinking about him, she wrote herself a note to remember to call him. He usually called her every couple of days to check up on her and make sure that work was not getting to her, which she thought was very sweet. She hated to admit it, but he made her feel special and she was starting to think that she might do something that she and Shego promised never to do. She believed that she might be falling in love, which she guessed was all right for two reasons.
She thought that it was all right for her to fall in love because she knew that Shego had somewhat broken the promise with her little pet. Betty had no clue how deep that love ran now because Shego was not talking about it, but she knew that her green-skinned friend loved that kid to a certain degree. The other reason was that if she did not tell Shego, then her friend would never know and they could avoid having a very stupid argument that would surely arise if Shego ever knew.
The one-eyed woman turned her attention back to her paperwork. She got to a memo reminding her that a special forces’ officer was coming to conduct a two-week training program for any volunteers. She sucked her teeth because she hated things like that because it was really just a load of crap in her opinion. No one was going to show any real signs of improvement after two weeks of lecture or mock-drills and she knew that anyone who did would then be scouted by government agencies and she would lose a valuable employee. Whenever those special programs came up, she made it mandatory for not only Shego to go, but for Will also. They were two separate kinds of annoyances that sent instructors fleeing in terror after a few days.
Why Shego and Will? Well, Shego did not want to do anything by the book while Will wanted to do everything exactly as the book stated. It was two extremes that made everyone aside from Betty want to rip their hair out. She figured that she would just sic those two on the instructor coming and call it a day. It was the easiest way to get rid of whoever it was that was trying to steal her employees.
Hey, she needed all of the employees that she had, especially the competent ones, which were the ones that the programs would have taken away. She needed people that she could send out on wild cases and they could actually get things done. She did not have as many as agents as people might assume that were worth sending out on the crazy things that they went out on. A lot of her agents freaked out in the field when they came across something that they dubbed bizarre, but she kept them on because there was always the chance that they could work a different assignment. She often just had to figure out how to use the people under her command.
“All right, people, I’m looking for Betty Director,” a large, brunette man announced as he entered the department headquarters. He was a brawly looking man with a huge chest that was covered by a sienna brown blazer and dark brown pants covered his small legs.
A few of the officers eyed him as if he was the dumbest thing that they had ever seen, but most of them just ignored him. Hey, if he needed directions to find the chief, let him buy a map, they all figured. It was not in their job description to point idiots to the office with big golden letters that read “chief” on it at the back of the first floor. If he needed her badly enough, surely, he would soon figure out where she was and find the office. If not, they would just laugh at him as he wandered the building like the moron they assumed he was.
“Hey!” he barked, still looking for some cooperation and directions. Apparently, he believed that shouting would get them to offer him some assistance. Little did he know that yelling was only going to make matters worse because they were not looking to help an asshole, which they now assumed he was because he was hollering.
“Oh, you’re a big boy,” Amy commented with a giggle as she walked up to the newcomer. She smiled at him. “Maybe I can help you,” she offered.
“Yeah, I’m looking for Betty Director,” he informed her. He did not pay her smile any mind or think anything about her giggle.
“All right. Her office is right down there. Are you applying for a job?” she asked curiously as she escorted the muscular gentleman through the maze of desks to get to Doctor Director’s office. She hoped that such a cute guy was going to be working around the place. She might have to spend some more time above ground if he was going to be there; she was usually in the basement lab when she was at work.
“No, I’m here to conduct a training program,” he answered.
“Oh, how exciting,” Amy said, showing that she was truly fascinated. She did not even know what the program was about, but it meant that she would be seeing more of the cutie next to her and that was a good thing.
Before the man could explain what the program was about, they came to the office. Amy knocked in a fashion that let the boss know it was her; somehow even her knock was cheerful. Doctor Director called for Amy to enter since she doubted that the round woman would stick around for too long. Amy giggled as she came into the office with the newcomer.
“Yes, Amy?” the boss inquired without looking up from her paperwork.
“There’s a cutie of a man here to see you,” Amy reported in a lighthearted tone. She was probably the only person in the whole place that would say such a thing to the boss.
“A man?” Doctor Director echoed in a puzzled tone as she looked up to see who the hell Amy was going on about. She frowned deeply when she saw who their guest was. “Steve,” she said in a clipped tone as she caught sight of the man in Amy’s company.
“Betty,” he replied with a small smile. It seemed that he was much happier to see her than she was to see him.
“What are you doing here?” the female in charge demanded to know.
“Calm down. I’m here for a training program,” he answered.
“Amy, you can go,” Doctor Director dismissed the scientist.
DNAmy, though sickeningly cheerful and thoroughly insane, was far from stupid. She could tell that there was something between the pair and it did not seem like something that she wanted to be in the middle of considering the fact that the chief was not as sane as she liked to pretend she was. Amy quickly took her leave and left no witnesses for whatever was about to happen between the two brunettes.
Betty frowned as she stared at one Major Steve Barkin. His arrival was just about the worst thing that the fates could throw her way as far as she was concerned. She never wanted to see him again and if he had shown up just ten minutes earlier, her wish would have been granted because Shego would have spotted him and gotten rid of him. She would have been none the wiser to his presence if that had happened.
“You look…well,” Steve noted, being careful of his use of words because of her expression. He could see that she was not too pleased with his arrival.
“You do too. So, about this program you’re going to run. I know it’s two weeks of intensive training in whatever you decide. Do you need volunteers or recommended officers?” Betty inquired in the best business tone that she could muster in his presence.
“A file of recommended officers. I’ll choose ten of those and the program should start at the beginning of next week,” he replied.
“You’ll choose ten?” Betty asked. That was new. She might not be able to pawn Shego off on him, which the moss-hued office would have been happy to know. He would not see Will coming, but she was not sure if the affect would be the same if it was only Will on his team. Will was a pest, but she was not sure if he would be enough of a pest to get rid of Steve ahead of schedule.
“Affirmative,” he replied.
“Fine,” she stated with a frustrated sigh. “Anything else?” she inquired while making sure not to grit her teeth in front of him.
“Well, how about we go out later—” he was cut off before he could finish, even though it was obvious as to where he was going with his words.
“I’m going to stop you right there,” Betty interjected. “I have no desire to walk down memory lane with you. They aren’t good memories for either of us. I’m sure you’ve still got the burn marks and scars to remember me by,” she remarked.
Steve gulped uncomfortably. “Well…um…yeah…” he mumbled while shifting awkwardly on the balls of his feet for a moment.
“And maybe you’d like to leave now,” she added in tone that made it clear that she was giving an order and not a suggestion.
“Bet—” he started to say, but she cut him off again.
“It’s Doctor Director here or Chief,” she corrected him before he could finish speaking her name.
“Doctor?” he echoed in a surprised and bewildered tone.
“Indeed,” she replied in a clipped tone.
Steve Barkin knew from her tone that he should leave, so he did just that. She was somehow different from what he remembered, but also the same. She was not so cold toward him in the past. He actually thought that she would be glad to see him; she would have wondered what gave him that stupid idea if she knew. He seriously could not have been any more wrong if he tried.
As Steve exited the building, Shego glanced up from her desk; she had just come in from an assignment. She caught a glimpse of the man, but nothing really revealing. A thought entered her mind, but she quickly dismissed it.
“Like he would have the balls to be here,” Shego said to herself and she turned her attention to typing up her report.
The raven-haired woman was still bothered by the thought for a while. She finished her report and bit her thumb in an anxious manner. She decided to share her nutty brain impulse with Betty. Once Betty told her that it was a ridiculous thought, she figured that she would feel much better.
“Hey, Bets, you free?” Shego inquired as she entered the office without knocking as usual.
“Somewhere there is a place where a forest once stood,” the boss remarked and she motioned to the stack of papers on her desk. “Does it look like I’m free?” she countered.
“Well, since I don’t see you chained to the desk, I’m going to take it as a good sign. But, considering your bitchy mood, you probably don’t want to hear this,” the pale woman commented.
“What?” Betty huffed. She hoped that her friend was not coming to share something stupid because she really did not have time for that.
“I thought I just saw Steve a little while ago. Weird, huh?” Shego said with a laugh.
“Not really. He was here a little while ago,” the one-eyed woman replied.
Shego stopped laughing immediately and scowled as if she saw her most hated enemy. “The fuck was he doing here?” she demanded to know.
“He was sent to do a special training program,” Betty answered with a sigh.
“He isn’t bothering you, is he? I swear, you’d figure plasma burns and a threat to slit his thick neck with my bare hands would be enough to get through any skull, even one as thick and as empty as his. He didn’t do anything, did he?” the moss-hued officer inquired.
“No, he didn’t do anything. I can take care of myself, believe it or not. So, don’t worry,” the one-eyed woman practically ordered. She knew not to look at it as Shego trying to look out for her, even though that was what the pale woman was doing. They both liked looking at it as Shego wanting to beat someone up, which was easier for both of them.
“Whatever.” Shego shrugged. Betty was a big girl and she could definitely take care of herself; she would not deny that one. But, she could not help thinking about the past and the burdens that she knew were going to come along when Steve showed up.
The super-powered female decided not to argue the matter. Maybe Betty would be able to handle things, she considered. Well, at least she knew that she was not going to have to suffer through one of those tedious, pointless programs. There was no way in all of Hell that Steve would accept her since he knew her and what she was like. She had a feeling that he was going to get a taste of Will, though. She figured that she might have to see how that worked out, so she would have to sit in on a couple of sessions. She believed that it would be nice to see Will irk someone other than her for a change.
Betty was thankful to be home after running into Steve Barkin that day. All she wanted to do was have a hot bath and curl up on the sofa with Leonardo while reading a book. But, as soon as she got to her door, she knew that was not going to happen. Her front door was open for some reason and she was only nervous for a moment. Lights began to go off in her head and she wished to heaven and hell that she had just been the victim of a regular burglary.
“Please, please, please just be burglars. I mean, it’s not possible, right? How the hell is that even possible? It just isn’t. He just showed up today, a few hours ago more than likely, so there’s just no fucking way,” Betty attempted to convince herself, but since her body was not going through the door, she knew that she was not doing a remotely good job. She refused to go into the house because she might be wrong. It might just be possible for her to have found out that Steve was in town so soon.
The one-eyed woman took a deep breath and steeled herself. She was a grown, kick-ass female, she reminded herself. She had control over her life. It was her life, after all. She stepped into the house after that mental pep talk. She then immediately found out that it was very much possible.
“Betty, it’s about time you got in,” the voice that spoke instantly made Betty feel ten years old even now.
The brunette woman turned her attention to the upstairs. Bloody hell, it was possible! There stood her mother. The woman was a brunette too; her hair was the same shade as Betty’s chocolate mane. She was a little shorter than Betty was and thicker ever so slightly. Her onyx eyes were as sharp as Betty’s, but there was something more to her gaze. Her eyes were much harder than her daughter’s. Betty felt looking into her mother’s eyes was like looking into black diamonds and she did not mean that in a pleasant way. It was like staring at the hardest substance on Earth and realizing that it was unbending.
“Mom,” Betty managed to squeak out.
“I expected you in eight minutes ago,” her mother stated in a rather clipped tone that was her usual voice when it came to Betty.
“Um…Mom, you do know that this is my house, right?” Betty inquired because of the way the woman was talking to her and then there was the fact that her mother had broken in.
“Of course. That doesn’t excuse your lateness. We had to let ourselves in, not to mention pick our own rooms,” her mother commented.
“Our? Sheldon is here then,” Betty muttered with a frown and then she thought about the other member of her household. “Where’s Leonardo?” she asked her mother because usually, she was ambushed by the big, energetic canine when she entered the house.
“Who?” her mother inquired with a craned eyebrow.
“He was put out,” her mother answered as if it was nothing at all.
“You put him out? In the cold? Not to mention, it just started raining?”
Betty rushed to the side door to see her mother had locked the dog door that she had installed for her big baby of a dog. She sucked her teeth and went to the back sliding doors. As soon as she opened the doors, Leonardo charged in and went right to her. She bent down and he nuzzled her, whining loudly as he rubbed his face into her arms. She petted his neck to assure her dog that everything would be all right.
“It’s okay, Leo. It’s okay,” she promised the whiny canine.
Leonardo just cried more so and then suddenly started growling. Betty turned to see what got her pet’s attention and saw her mother and twin brother standing some feet away. Betty frowned at the pair; ten seconds into their stay and she was sick of them already. Unfortunately, she knew for a fact that her feelings would not matter to her mother.
“Why’d you put him out there?” Betty inquired.
“Dogs should be in the yard,” her mother replied matter-of-factly.
Betty could not believe her ears. Her mother had the nerve to put her dog out in the yard while her twin brother carried his little rat around in his arms no matter where he was. First of all, they were in Leo’s home. He lived there while they did not. They had no right to put him out in the yard, especially in that cold, just all around nasty weather.
“Besides, he bothered Pepe,” Sheldon added as if his sister would give a damn about his rodent dog.
“This is just ridiculous,” Betty declared.
“What is ridiculous is that you didn’t invite Steve over,” her mother said and that was it.
Betty decided against taking any sort of abuse from her mother and she did not need the stress that came along with her mother and brother. She knew what they were like and she did not feel like dealing with it. She did not have to deal with it.
She went upstairs without saying a word and quickly threw some things into a couple of bags. She opened her bedroom window and had no problem with jumping out after she tossed her bags out of the opening. She landed in the backyard, where Leonardo was once again; her mother had wasted no time throwing him out as soon as Betty was gone. She had expected as much and Leonardo charged over to her as soon as she landed. He nuzzled his head against her leg.
“Shh,” Betty ordered her dog and she petted him to calm him down. “We’re getting out of here, boy. We don’t have to take this shit and trust me, there would be much shit to take if we stuck around,” she said.
Shego was relaxing and watching one of her favorite movies. Her pet was knocked out in her lap, her head buried in Shego’s abdomen. The pale woman was caressing the younger woman’s scalp and the only noise aside for the television was the occasional deep inhale or exhale from Kim. Then there was a disturbing knock at the door. Shego swore under her breath and gently lifted her pet off of her to go answer the door.
“Bets,” Shego said in a surprised tone as she opened the door.
“My mother is at my house,” Betty said with a look of sheer misery and the report would have been meaningless to anyone else.
“Shit, she moves quick. My mother couldn’t even get here that fast,” the emerald-eyed woman commented in a slightly amazed tone.
“The woman can fucking teleport or something. I mean, I knew she’d show up the second Steve stepped into my office, but that was fucking fast. She beat me home,” the one-eyed woman stated. “And she had Sheldon with her,” she added with disdain.
“Eww.” Shego shuddered.
“So, you packed you bags and undoubtedly jumped out of your bedroom window,” the green-skinned female guessed. There were formulas to them when they dealt with certain people, like their mothers. They had repeat behaviors that stemmed back to childhood when it came to their mothers.
“Like you’ve never jumped out of your bedroom window,” the elder female retorted.
“Not recently,” Shego remarked.
“Don’t judge me, little Izzie.”
Shego looked absolutely offended by that. Calling her a crack-whore probably would have gotten less of a reaction. “I’m going to chalk that up to you being stressed out and not burn your face off for it,” she commented. “All right, let’s get to the bare bones of what you’re doing here with bags and your stupid dog.”
“He’s not stupid like your pet,” Betty defended Leonardo.
“Get to your point. I’m missing a good movie,” the raven-haired woman said. Not to mention she wanted to get back to caressing her little monster.
“I need a place to stay until she leaves,” the one-eyed woman stated plainly. Shego knew what the older female wanted, namely to stay at the apartment for up to two weeks, which the pale woman knew because she was aware that Betty’s mother would hang around for as long as Steve was in town. Shego’s face remained neutral as she considered how to respond.
Next time: Will Shego let Betty stay? And just what is up with Betty and Steve?