“Mego, come in.”
Dr. Director was not the voice Mego expected to hear on the frequency. “Y-yes, Dr. Director?” he responded, slightly fumbling in surprise.
“Turn back and head to the emergency units at the plane. That native Alter woman destroyed Bonnie’s vehicle and escaped, but the three other Alter users the native woman was fighting have been arrested, and they need a prison transport vehicle to move them safely.”
Mego snickered. “Bonnie’s car got totaled? Ooh, that musta’ not been a pretty sight…”
“Cut the irrelevant chatter, Mego. Laugh about it when you return and are off-duty. For now, go back to the plane. I have already informed the emergency personnel you’ll be arriving shortly, and that your unit requires the use of their tow vehicle and prison transport van. If I hear any one more of those captured native Alters have escaped like that black-haired woman, I will be taking it out solely on you, Mego. So, I suggest you stop laughing at your fellow Grounds Justice agents and get your ass in gear.”
“Dammit…Where the hell is she? Hey, Mrs. P!” Ron wandered around the numerous emergency units. Mrs. Possible was the reason he’d been on the plane from Go City to Upperton; Gemini was getting fed up with him constantly moping about not being able to ever see Kim again, so Mrs. Possible had convinced him to transfer Ron to her daughter’s unit at GJ HQ in Upperton. Gemini had agreed rather quickly, knowing it would irk Dr. Director to have another “useless Inventory worker” foisted upon her at GJ. Mrs. Possible had higher authority than Dr. Director in almost all matters of civilian personnel operations, however – even when the civilian operative was assigned to an active field unit - so Dr. Director had but no choice to accept the transfer. Ron was just glad to get away from Gemini’s damned Chihuahua. For some unknown reason, Pepe hated him, no matter how nice he tried to be to the fucking dog. But, now he was away from there, and needed to find Mrs. Possible. “Hey! Mrs. Possible!”
He spun around. “Mrs. P.! There you are!”
“Ronald! Oh, good, you’re okay!” Mrs. Possible hugged him.
“What happened?” asked Ron.
“That’s what I’m trying to find out, myself. I overheard someone say a native Alter had jumped on the wing—”
“Um… That woman was a native Alter?”
“Woman?” asked Mrs. Possible, curious.
“You didn’t see her?” Ron was a little surprised, but not completely. “A black-haired woman jumped on the wing and used it as a springboard. Hell knows where she was goin’.”
“N-no. I must’ve been on the other side of the plane,” answered Mrs. Possible.
Michelle Possible had joined GJ a few years after her daughter and Ron had eagerly signed up. She would’ve signed up the day Kim had, but something had made her hesitant about it. However, after seeing her daughter on the news numerous times using her Alter, the neurosurgeon had became heavily curious in learning just how Alter powers worked. Since GJ had the best medical and scientific facilities in the area, she’d decided to take advantage of them to further her research. She hadn’t known it when it had happened, but Kim’s Alter power first manifested on that horrifying day. She would never forget what had happened that day, no matter how she tried. Her husband and sons, falling into that crevasse along with Ron’s parents…The Go Jet falling on top of her, Kim, and Ron…The three of them should’ve been killed that day.
But 9-year old Kim had run in front of them and called her Alter for the first time then, more on instinct and a desire to protect the people she cared about, rather than the monotonous police work her daughter was so proud of nowadays. As her Alter was already so powerful in its first appearance, Kim had managed to use it to shield them from the plane plummeting down on top of them. Mrs. Possible smirked. It hadn’t been strong enough back then to prevent the jet’s explosion from knocking the three of them out, but if the incident had happened today, Kim would be able stop it while yawning in her sleep. Not that she’d seen her daughter in a very long time; she and Ron had been transferred to the headquarters of WEE in Go City the night of the same day they’d signed up. They had not seen Kim at all since then, only heard about her and seen her briefly on the news. Kim was one of the most famous GJ agents, hailed in both Go City and Upperton.
“Okay, people! Move along! Everything’s fine here! Just follow those nice young men and women over there and they’ll take you to a transport into Upperton!” barked the man in charge of the emergency units, respectively named Mr. Barkin. He was not an Alter, but, as everyone quickly figured out, he knew what he was doing and was very good at barking out what others were supposed to be doing or where they should be going. As he unknowingly made his way near Mrs. Possible and Ron, a car drove up. The purple-skinned driver hopped out and quickly made his way over to Barkin. “Ah, Mego. You’re here. Good,” said Barkin, shaking the GJ agent’s hand in respect. “The tow vehicle and prison transport are ready for you. Do you need—”
“Mego?” Mrs. Possible spun around. “Isn’t he in Kim’s unit?”
“Mrs. Possible!” gasped Barkin. “I was not informed you were on this plane! It is an honour to meet you, Ma’am,” he slightly bowed.
Mrs. Possible chuckled. “Oh, c’mon, Mr. Barkin. You don’t need to do that. Stand up. I’m just here to see Ron into his new position as Unit 002’s Inventory worker, and give the lab here in Upperton samples of the new chemical I created that’s seemed to soothe some rowdy Alters in Go City. I’ll be gone by the evening.” She turned her attention to Mego. “Mego, was it? You’re in Kimmie’s unit, aren’t you?”
“K-Kimmie?” Mego nearly choked. He’d never heard anyone refer to his team leader as “Kimmie” before.
“Yes, Kimmie. Kim. Kim Possible. My daughter.”
“O-oh! Yes, Kim. Yeah, I am in her unit.”
“What are you doing here?”
“We were called out to apprehend the native Alter who caused this plane to land out here and she apparently destroyed Bonnie’s van—”
“Whoahwhoah – Bonnie’s car was destroyed?” interrupted Barkin.
Mego smirked. “Yeah, I know. I’m so annoyed I wasn’t there.”
“Oh, I will need dirt on this when we get back to Upperton…”
“Sorry, Barkin. I’m the scout. I wasn’t there.”
“So, anyways, back to the reason I’m here: the rest of my team is stuck with no vehicle a few miles from here with 5 native Alters they captured, so I’m taking the emergency units’ tow truck and prison transport vehicle, as they’re not needed in the operation here.”
“I’ll go with you. It’ll give Kimmie a surprise,” Mrs. Possible chuckled. “Besides, don’t you need a second driver?”
“No, I don’t need a second driver,” contested the annoyed Mego. “If I could actually be allowed to get to those cars, they’ll both be at the scene in 5 minutes.”
“Mego, this woman is above Dr. Director in authority. I’m sure you don’t want to explain to Gemini why you refused to let her come with you.”
Mego gulped at Barkin’s mention of Gemini. He’d dealt with an angry Dr. Director, and he didn’t want to fathom what her brother was like. “O-okay, then, Mrs. Possible. You can take one of the vehicles, I guess.”
“Young Ronald will be accompanying me, by the way,” said Mrs. Possible, motioning to Ron – who pointed at himself, silently asking me?
“What? No, no one else is coming with – Hubba hubba, never mind - Hell, Hon can ride in my car if he wants…RRrrrowl…” Mego purred upon seeing Ron.
“Um…I-I’ll just drive the tow truck, I think,” stuttered Ron, a little surprised at just having been hit on by someone who was not a woman. “Th-thanks for the offer, though…Mego, was it?”
“Yep. Mego’s my name. You can wear it out any day of the week.”
“Yeah, I’m – just gonna get the keys to the truck now…”
“Kim, I’m on my way with the vehicles.”
“Good, Mego. ETA?”
“Well, I can see you. How’s that?”
Kim looked up to see Mego driving up, the tow truck and prison transport vehicle a bit behind him. “He’s coming,” she told the rest of the unit.
“Oh, good. Now we can get my car back and fixed. Thank god. I’m still gonna kill that fucking bitch the next time I see her!” groused Bonnie.
“Calm yourself, Bonnie. The native Alter is not here anymore.” Kim looked out across the vast and epic lands of The Lost Grounds. “However, I have a feeling this was not the last time we cross her path. If that was the infamous Fire-Shell Bullet, I say with certainty we will meet again.”
“Calm down? Why should I fucking calm down? That bitch destroyed my car! How can I calm myself down after that bitch destroyed my car?”
“Whoah – Damn, that native Alter really took it apart, Bonnie.” Mego, suddenly beside her, leaned down to look. “Glad it wasn’t my car!”
Bonnie smacked him away. “Hey, dammit! What the hell are you doing? Don’t touch my car, you purple-haired prick! And pay attention! You’re on duty here! Why don’t you ever act like you’re on duty when you are on duty, Mego? Act like you’re on fucking duty for once!”
“Enough, both of you. Save it for later,” Kim scolded. “Right now we have 5 native Alter prisoners to interrogate before placing them in custody.”
“Hi, Kimmie!” waved Mrs. Possible cheerfully, hopping out of the prison transport vehicle.
Ron waved with similar cheerfulness as he stepped out of the tow truck. “Yeah, hey, KP!”
Kim turned her head at movement out of the corner of her left eye, by the house and away from the newly arrived civilian personnel.
Mrs. Possible’s cheerful face dropped. She stopped waving her hand. “Kimmie?”
“What’s she looking at—” Ron stopped asking his question when a slew of teenage girls began to pour out of the house. When all had appeared, there were 20 girls. The first few were either wearing nothing but robes or towels, and they looked like their bodies had been thrown off cliffs, they were so extensively covered with bruises and injuries. The next few were wearing clothes that had had holes or sections ripped out of them around their breasts and between their legs. They, too, were covered with injuries. The rest had skimpy clothing and half the number of injuries.
“Oh my god!” Mrs. Possible gasped. “Ronald, grab a medkit and changes of clothes for those poor women!” she said, running over to the girls.
“Right away, Mrs. P!” saluted Ron, catching the keys from her and dashing to the rear of the prisoner transport vehicle to fetch the supplies.
The first girl flinched when Mrs. Possible reached out to examine her cacophony of wounds. “Relax. I’m not here to hurt you, young woman. Ronald—” She motioned to the young man approaching with the medkit and clothes. “He and I are here to get you back into good condition.”
Kim watched as all the girls silently allowed her mother and Ron to examine the full wrath of their injuries and give them proper clothing. When all the girls had been treated, she returned her gaze to The Oh Boyz and Roland. “20 normal native teenage girls, most with severe beating and forceful sexual assault injuries. Care to explain exactly what you were doing with them in your house?” asked Kim, glaring at the Oh Boyz. Upon no response, Kim turned to the girls. “Go. Return to the village from whence you came. You do not belong to these people anymore.”
The girls ran off down the opposite road, taking the other fork in it from the one they’d watched Shego and Drakken take in their escape.
Except one. Adrena Lynn had suppressed the urge to use her Alter for the longest time, using her own specially learned tricks to hide the large amount of paper money she was carrying. Luckily, she’d been last on the Oh Boyz’s list, and they hadn’t gotten to her yet. Once she was sure she and the girls were out of view from the house, she broke from everyone and quickly hid behind a rock formation that prevented even WEE and GJ’s spy satellite above The Lost Grounds from spotting her. The girls were only running back to a worse slavery than they had been in. But none of them had spoken up about that slavery, for fear of immediately being arrested like Roland and the Oh Boyz. She needed to truly free her village. Morning was very fortunate: Adrena had seen the Fire-Shell Bullet in action. And the Fire-Shell Bullet was perfect for the job.
Kim turned back to Roland and the Oh Boyz. “I will ask you one more time: What were you doing with those normal prisoners?”
“What, like it wasn’t obvious?” spat Roland.
“Are you saying you and your colleagues are admitting to using these innocent women as sexual slaves?” Kim inquired.
Roland laughed. “Hah! Innocent, my ass! Those girls were already bitches before we got ‘em handed to us!”
“Yeah, them kittens were already a few months old,” cackled Nicky-Nick. “Kinda’ pissed us off, we wanted some newborns.”
“Do you know the name of that native Alter who escaped this scene?”
“Pfft, hell if I know her real name,” Roland snorted. “However, I can tell you that she is the Fire-Shell Bullet. I hope you know who that is.”
“Fire-Shell Alter?” Josh looked at Tara, who shrugged. Tara looked at Yori, who also shrugged.
“Fire-Shell Alter? That was the Fire-Shell Alter? Goddammit, now I’m even more pissed! How could you beat her so easily, Kim? While I had my car destroyed by fucking punch of hers? You shouldn’t have beaten that bitch! I should’ve fuckin’ beat her, goddammit!” grumbled Bonnie.
Kim held up her hand at the brown-haired woman. She usually let her go on and on, but she was trying to get information at the moment and did not need Bonnie’s interruptions now. “Why was the Fire-Shell Bullet here? Why did she fight you?” she asked Roland and The Oh Boyz.
“Oh, I don’t know. Probably so she could have our kittens all to herself,” Robby snickered.
“Yeah, she was probably lookin’ to make some good money off ‘em. Like that GJ agent who sold them to us in the first place. What a stupid guy—” Ryan’s voice caught as Kim’s eyes flared and in the blink of an eye, eight dark pink spheres had formed a sword inches from his throat.
Mrs. Possible gasped, stunned at her daughter’s move. “Kimmie…” she whispered.
“You dare accuse a fellow officer of mine of committing heinous crimes against the innocent native normal citizens of The Lost Grounds?” Kim’s voice was cold as it always was, but now there was a noticeable hint of venom behind each word, as there was whenever someone insulted GJ.
“Y-yeah! I dare!” proclaimed Ryan, looking down at the point of Kim’s Alter sword.
Kim’s eyes narrowed in anger. She lowered her head. “Do you have evidence? A name? Or are you just trying to trick me into letting my guard down so you can make a dash for it? Accusing any fellow GJ officer of such crimes are serious charges. Show evidence, and I might believe it.”
“Evidence?” a voice practically snarled.
Everyone’s heads turned to look at Dexter, who had regained consciousness, and was trying to stand up.
“EVIDENCE?” he repeated. “You fucking WEE and GJ bastards want us to show you EVIDENCE of crimes your goddamn fucktarded officers have committed here against innocent people? What about you WEE and GJ fuckers thinking you have the right to just run around policing the lands you don’t even fucking live in, and arresting people who are trying to simply get enough for food and water every night? That’s evidence enough of crimes against the innocent people here! BECAUSE ALL THE PEOPLE HERE ARE THE INNOCENT ONES! IT’S YOU FUCKERS! GODDAMN POLICE STATE BITCHES! YOU’VECOMMITTED THE MOST HEINOUS CRIMES HERE!”
“I have heard enough from you, native Alter. Yori, restrain him,” ordered Kim.
“It will be my honour,” Yori acknowledged and in seconds, she’d appeared behind Dexter, overpowered him, and cuffed him.
Kim turned back to Ryan, who was still under threat from her Alter’s sword. “If you were about to argue using the same reasons, it would be best not to. I have heard such arguments from many native Alters my team has arrested – and always, it was they who later admitted full guilt.”
“So, what? Are you gonna decapitate me now?” chortled Ryan.
Kim closed her eyes and sighed, very briefly. The dark pink spheres forming the sword disappeared. “No. Unlike you barbarian native Alters running amok out here in the Lost Grounds, we at GJ have learned something called respect for every life. We only kill if it is a very last resort.”
“Must not be much respect, considering all the native Alters you’ve already killed,” snapped Roland.
“All you are doing with these comments is making the length of your sentence longer, so I would hold your tongue,” Kim replied. “In fact, I have heard enough as it is. Josh? Tara? Place them in the holding chambers of the prisoner transport vehicle. Everyone will be ready to return to GJ HQ the moment the native Alters are secured and Bonnie and Mego have the tow truck hooked up to our damaged vehicle, ready to follow.”
“Yes, Ma’am!” replied all the GJ officers, saluting, then promptly loading into the front compartment except for Josh, Tara, Bonnie and Mego. Ron and Mrs. Possible followed the former group, walking into the spacious main section of the prisoner transport. Kim was not far behind.
“Heyyy, KP! What’s—”
Kim made no motion to acknowledge her mother’s or her friend’s presence as she walked past them in silence and sat in the driver’s seat.
“-happenin’?” Ron’s greeting deflated as Kim rerouted the radio communication signal from her headset to the prisoner transport vehicle’s radio.
“Unit #002, returning from deployment in The Lost Grounds. 4 native Alters and 1 normal native have been subdued and taken into our custody. One vehicle has suffered damage, but is still in salvageable condition. Approximate ETA to the Upperton Wall about 15-20 minutes.”
“Understood, Unit #002. We will be ready for your arrival accordingly.”
Monique was waiting for her. The pudgy GJ member was currently off duty, and eating to her heart’s content the row of Nacos sitting on the table. But she had to know the truth from the woman herself. She looked up as the doors opened, quickly cleaning any crumbs off of herself and standing up as Bonnie stormed past the table by the main doors she was eating at. “So, Bonnie… heard you got your car destroyed?”
“Shut up, Monique! Just shut up! I don’t wanna hear it from you! I don’t wanna hear it from anybody! I’m already pissed off enough! Shut up!”
“I was there!” cheered Tara, behind Bonnie, throwing her arms around her friend in a giant hug as Bonnie sped past them, ignoring in her huff.
“Oh, girl, you have got to give me the details on this!” chuckled Monique with a wry smile. She held on to Tara’s hands, but without much of a grip in case the blonde chose to break away the contact. However, Tara seemed not to mind one bit. “How pissed was she?” Monique asked.
“Remember when you accidentally spilled that small amount of cheese sauce on her seat cover?” Tara asked.
“Whoah!” Monique’s eyes widened in shock. “Aw, man, now I wish I’d been there!”
Tara laughed. Monique smiled again, blushing. Making Tara laugh was easy. She had been friends with the perky blonde woman ever since Tara had joined GJ. But Monique wanted to be able to do more with the blonde. “Um…Tara?” she asked, her blushing now quite visible.
“Yeah?” Tara looked at her friend. It was obvious what Monique wanted to say, from the redness on the cheeks on the woman’s face. But…
Monique looked down. “Um, do you want…uh…want a…”
Monique jumped as Tara’s grip on her hands increased, pulling the two slightly closer together. She looked back up into Tara’s eyes, which only made her more nervous. “Uh…Do you want…Do you want a… A Naco?” she sputtered, instantly cringing and mentally kicking herself.
Tara giggled. “You know, you’re really cute when you’re embarrassed…Sure, I’ll have a Naco.”
Monique’s eyes brightened in happy shock. “You will?”
“Yeah, as long you don’t get mad if I take it from you,” Tara chuckled.
“Girl, you can take anything from me, I don’t care just as long as it’s you doing the taking,” said Monique, grinning, her nervousness fading.
Tara just laughed again as she reached for one of the Nacos. “Thanks for the offer, Monique. But I think I’ll just take the Naco one for now.” As she ate, she knew Monique was watching, eyes glazed over in a daydream. She didn’t mind. It was just – well, she didn’t want to be rude-
“Oh, Josh! Wait up!” She stood up and raced after Josh as he walked by, leaving Monique stunned, looking at the half-eaten Naco of hers.
“Dammit!” sulked the raven-haired woman. “So close…Well, at least she thinks I’m really cute, that’s gotta be a good sign. But… Dammit!”
“Tara, stop following me around! Please. You know I’m not interested in you.”
Monique’s ears perked up upon hearing Josh’s voice. She stood up and walked over, standing just outside the mini-cafeteria for GJ agents.
“I’m interested in Kim. Why don’t you just go with Monique? You know she likes you, and you two have been best friends for ages.”
“Well, I don’t have an orientation preference, but I just don’t wanna hurt Monique by saying I don’t like the way she looks. I’d feel mean, and I wouldn’t be respecting her if I told her up front. I mean, I like the way she looks, and I know she likes me a lot, but it’s just – well, I at least want someone in shape. Even if I met someone else who was a lot like her, I’d be hesitant because of they way they looked. If she were in shape, I’d be fine. I mean, she doesn’t have to slim down or anything – just…No jelly rolls, please. Ew.”
Monique’s heart raced. “All I have to do is use the gym a bit each day? Yes!” With that, she ran to her quarters to change into gym clothes, but stopped. “Oh, wait! I gotta go finish my Nacos first!” She turned again and dashed back to her table before anyone could steal her meals.
“I am glad to see you are alright, Mother. I was not informed of your presence on the plane, but it is good to see you again.”
“Kimmie – It’s good to see you, too, honey.” Mrs. Possible, finally glad her daughter had acknowledged she was there, leaned in to hug her.
Kim held up her hand, backing away. “Please. I must request that you do not address me by that. You may call me Kim or Kimberly only.”
Michelle’s face dropped again. “Kim?”
“I am assuming you are here to deliver something to our research staff?” asked Kim.
“Yes.” Mrs. Possible motioned to Ron. “I’m also here to see Ron to his new position as the Field Inventory worker for your unit—”
“I see. In that case, follow me. I will take you to our research labs, and then show Ron to his new living quarters. Knowing the speed and hospitality of our agents here at GJ, I can assure him that his luggage is fine, and will already be waiting in his room when we arrive at it.”
“That’s great, KP. Can’t we talk to you at all about—”
“If you are going to ask me about how I have been, I am fine, thank you for asking about my condition. Here it is, Mother. Our research lab.”
“Oh, well, Kim – Can’t we –” Mrs. Possible tried to protest, but Kim was already walking away from the room, taking Ron to his room.
“I am glad to see you in good health, Ron. It has been a while since I last saw you.” Kim opened the curtains to the large window in the room.
“’A while?’ KP, what is wrong with you?” asked Ron.
“Nothing is wrong with me, Ron. In fact, I am feeling better than I ever have before.” She stared out the window at The Lost Grounds in the distance, her expression never changing. “What GJ is doing – is making everyone’s world safer. We are doing the citizens of both Upperton and The Lost Grounds a favour by rooting out these reckless native Alters, who do nothing but abuse their powers to hurt and control others.”
“Wouldn’t you think the people of Middleton would be able to police themselves?”
“The people of Middleton proved themselves many years ago to be incapable of keeping the native Alters in check, both against their own citizens and against the people of Upperton. After the numerous incidences in both Middleton and Upperton involving native Alters, GJ had no choice but to step in and begin policing The Lost Grounds. All these native Alters have done is ruin lives, plain and simple. We will stop them.”
“I don’t think you should be so harsh to judge like that, KP. I mean, aren’t they all just trying to survive out there?”
“You saw the 4 native Alters we captured today, Ron.” Kim turned so fast, so robotically. Ron could not believe this was the same girl he’d been best friends with for the first 9 years of his life. The girl who always tried to smile, who always laughed; this was truly not the same girl who was infamous with him for all her spunk and energy. “You saw what they were doing, holding 20 normal native girls they had kidnapped as sexual slaves. Those were certainly not actions I would describe as ‘Just trying to survive.’ Would you describe that as ‘Just trying to survive?’”
“Exactly.” Kim turned back to looking out the window. “We are helping the people of Middleton. By taking the native Alters to a place where they cannot harm anyone else, or allowing them to reform from their reckless ways by joining our ranks as another agent of GJ, we are helping to bring peace and stability to the entire region. I am extraordinarily hopeful that I may be able to see such a moment happen in my lifetime.”
No, it had to be a clone. There was no way the Kim he knew could have turned into someone this cold and distant. “KP, you spent the first 9 years of your life living in Middleton. You know the people there weren’t bad. Why don’t you give ‘em a chance? C’mon, remember our past!”
“Anything is possible for a Possible.” There was no change in her tone of voice.
“Yeah! Like that – only, with emotion this time…”
Kim whirled with frightening speed and precision. “Including forgetting the past. It is of no concern to me anymore, Ron. I look only to what the future holds for the great citizens of Upperton, Go City, and Middleton. Once GJ has captured every last native Alter in The Lost Grounds – I hope above hope to that day, when we will finally be able to declare a unity of the three lands, with full peace and security for all. There is an orientation meeting for all new staff members in 20 minutes, in Dr. Director’s office. Now, I am on duty and I am wasting my time here. Adieu.”
“KP, c’m-” Ron protested, but she was already 2 steps out the door. Ron sighed, sinking onto the bed. “Some ‘catching up’ that was…”
“So you finally ran into the infamous Fire-Shell Bullet.”
“Yes, we did.”
“And she destroyed your unit’s prison transport vehicle with one punch.”
“Correct. And I apologize. I should have handled the native Alter from the start, instead of allowing Bonnie to attack her.”
Dr. Director smirked. She knew Kim did not trust Bonnie completely, since Bonnie had just recently been reformed from The Lost Grounds. Yet Bonnie had fast proven herself to be a very effective agent – even if no one could truly understand what the hell she was saying all the time. It was fitting, actually. Bonnie lived fast, drove fast, ate fast – Monique and a few others always joked that she probably took a shit fast, too. So it made perfect sense that Bonnie would quickly prove her worth as an agent in the field.
Kim could just not understand that concept, however. Kim was not like Bonnie. Kim operated slowly. She was methodical and calm in combat, preferring to defend herself primarily while an enemy attacked. That way, it allowed Kim to analyze her opponent’s style of attack, letting them waste their energy while she searched for a vulnerability, which, upon finding one, she attacked with a precision strike carrying only the amount of force that was necessary to exploit the vulnerability and disable her adversary. She never used more energy than she needed, viewing it as wasteful. This was Kim’s style, and it was quite fitting for her. Seeing as she’d personally been trained by Dr. Director herself, it made perfect sense that it would be her style. Bonnie’s style was drastically different, and because of that, Kim was still wary of the speed freak. She did not trust Bonnie’s urge to simply flatten every native Alter they came across. In Kim’s mind, Bonnie was still mostly the same reckless native Alter she was when they had originally captured her.
Normally, Dr. Director would be the first person to agree with Kim’s opinion, but this time the exchange had been far from normal. “No.”
Dr. Director looked at Kim. “Sending Bonnie after the woman may not have been the right decision, but by doing so, we know the Fire-Shell Bullet may just be as powerful as the rumours of her declare she is. Look at it this way, this was a valuable mistake. Like I’ve told you time and time again, people learn from their mistakes. None of us here knew the Fire-Shell Bullet’s true amount of power. By destroying the van first, followed by you handling her easily up until she escaped, we now know that she is powerful, but not so powerful as to not be stopped.”
“I see,” Kim nodded.
“Did you happen to catch the woman’s real name?”
“No. She never stated it.” Most people wouldn’t even know that someone could notice it, but Dr. Director knew Kim was extremely annoyed, mentally kicking herself because she didn’t know the raven-haired woman’s real name. That was another thing she had taught the young woman how to do; these native Alters were always so haughty, it was easy to get them to proclaim their real name for all to hear. If a native Alter ever escaped, which none had actually accomplished, up until the confrontation earlier, knowing their name made it a cinch to track them down.
“I think we should try and recruit this woman into GJ before she does any more damage to us and our vehicles. Don’t you agree?”
It was the first time Dr. Director had ever seen Kim think about an answer for more than 5 seconds. “I do. But—”
“But, you have reservations. That’s understandable. But, we will have to sit on pursuing this course until she is drawn out again on her own.”
“Yes, Dr. Director.” Kim nodded her head to acknowledge. “Pardon me if it is not my place, but I must say I believe that will not take long.”
“No, it shouldn’t.” Dr. Director stood up. “In the meantime, we have been hearing rumours that a few native Alters are holding a small village hostage as labor slaves. I have sent a few members of another unit in to infiltrate the village and confirm or deny these rumours. The town is the only one with advanced technology that survived the event all those years ago. We cannot take any chances of the native Alters using that equipment and being notified of our agents inside the village. Run this programmed set of intermittent scans and sweeps within the boundaries of these coordinates until I give the order to halt such activities and return to the normal schedule of intermittent scans and sweeps, and all GJ units shall halt the pursuit of any native Alter attempting to flee into that area, unless I personally give the all clear to proceed. Do you understand?”
Kim nodded, taking the disc. “Completely, Ma’am.”
“Good. Now, go. You are off-duty as soon as that disc and my instructions have been given to Wade. I suggest you might want to go catch your mother before her plane to Go City leaves.”
“I shall try. Thank you, Dr. Director.” Kim saluted, turned, and left the office, brushing past Ron as he came in.
“What? Not even a casual “Hi?” Aw, c’mon, KP!” whined the blonde male.
“Ah. You must be young Ronald,” said Betty. “Kim told me of your exceptional skills beyond mere Inventory work today in the field.”
“She did? And yes, Ma’am, I am Ronald Stoppable.”
Dr. Director stood up, shaking his hand. “Good to have you on GJ staff, Ron. Have a seat. You aren’t the only one starting a job here today.”
“Uh…Thank you, Ma’am,” said Ron, sitting down as a few other normal, low-maintenance staff members filed in for the Orientation Meeting.
Michelle sighed as the plane taxied out. “You acted like I was more of a nuisance than your mother…Kimmie …What happened to you?”
As the jetliner took off, she was half-glad to be heading back to Go City. So close to the stars, The Lost Grounds - yet, it had been freezing…
She didn’t care if they were watching. Dawn was breaking, and the Fire-Shell Bullet was walking down the road. This was her only chance.
Shego stopped at the woman rushing from behind a boulder at her. “What the fuck? Who are you, and why did you ruin my morning walk?”
“My name is Adrena Lyn. I want to hire you to save my village.”
“How much? And from who?”
“From some GJ agents. Not any of the ones who nearly arrested you yesterday. Oh, and the price? $12,000. To make up for whatever the price whoever hired you yesterday to save me and those 19 other girls from my village from The Oh Boyz put up for you.”
“What? GJ freed those girls only to send ‘em into their own slavery? Those fucking bastards! Oh, they’re gonna fuckin’ pay!” Shego growled.
“I’ll pay you right here and now, but only if I get to come along with and beat some of their goddamn corrupt heads with you.”
“You got an Alter power?”
“Friends dubbed it ‘Freaky Wing Missiles,” Adrena affirmed. “I’m surprised GJ’s scans didn’t pick me up inside the house.”
“Works for me. Can probably use these GJ boneheads for practice, anyways, ‘til I face that red-haired bitch of a GJ agent again. Just beat their scrawny asses, get stronger, then come back and beat that bitch’s ass. Let’s go!” snarled Shego, following where Adrena ran down the road.