“Well Princess, looks like this just isn't your day.” Shego whispered into Kim's ear, her warm breath tickling with each word.
Kim glared at Shego as she silently continued trying to escape from her grasp. With Shego's right hand pinning her arms above her head, she had very little room to maneuver. It didn't help that Shego was waving her other hand in Kim's face, close enough for her to feel the heat from the glowing appendage. Or that she seemed to have been backed into something sticky. Whatever it was, her back and legs now seemed to have become glued to the wall.
She couldn't believe she'd been caught like this. Trapping someone by gluing them to a wall was such a cliche. One she hadn't been subjected to in years. If Will Du and those other gossipy agents at Global Justice ever found out she would never live it down. Unlike Ron, and his perpetual falling pants distraction routine, she liked to think that she had some dignity left to preserve. Speaking of which…
‘Where are you Ron!’ she thought desperately. ‘A rescue would be nice right about now!’ They'd been separated almost as soon as they entered Drakken's newest lair. She wasn't really worried about his safety. At least not any more than normal. He had a tendency to land on his feet, and for all their posturing, the mad scientists and super-villains she and Ron fought on a regular basis might ‘play’ hard but they didn't go out of their way to kill. Their booby traps were usually meant to delay pursuit, and demonstrate their cleverness, not maim. She liked to believe that her regular foes were a cut above the ordinary criminal, with a code of ethics.
Not as idealistic, Ron always laughed at her ideas of noble foes. She knew he was probably correct, that Drakken, DNAmy, Monkey Fist, and the others never intentionally killed anyone because they preferred to go against the non-lethal agents fielded by Global Justice, instead of any number of US and non-US government entities who would have no qualms about using deadly force to stop them. But she preferred her own optimistic outlook. Attributing their behavior to something less selfish made it easier for her to deal with them.
“What am I going to do with you?” murmured Shego, smirking as she leaned closer, her breath now blowing in Kim's face.
“Let me go!” Kim demanded, feeling a very faint panicky feeling deep in her stomach. Sure her face was red from the fruitless struggle, she tried to ignore how Shego's alcohol and licorice smelling breath flooded her nostrils. They were so evenly matched with their fighting abilities now that she tended to forget that Shego wasn't just a skilled opponent but also a lot stronger. When it came to brute strength, Kim couldn't compete.
“Not your decision, Kimmie.” Shego said. “Any minute now Stoppable or Drakken will accidentally hit the self-destruct button and blow us up. If you want to leave before that happens you'll have to cooperate. Or I can just leave you stuck to the wall like a fly.”
Kim continued pulling against her green and black clad foe. All she needed was to get one arm free. Her Kimmunicator was just out of reach in a pocket but if she could get to it she was sure she could signal Wade that she needed Ron. Even Rufus would be welcome at this point. Anything to distract Shego, who seemed intent on pushing her into the wall with her entire body. She could feel the glue as it soaked into her shirt. If she could get loose before it hardened she had a chance to escape.
“Well?” Shego asked, wiggling slightly, the friction causing Kim to gasp in surprise.
“Get off me!” she sputtered as parts of Shego touched her in totally unexpected places. She couldn't imagine what Shego was up to but it wasn't proper enemy behavior. It wasn't even proper behavior for close friends, which Shego certainly wasn't.
“What's in it for me?” Shego asked, grinning at Kim as alarms started to go off and flashing red lights flooded the room. “The clock is ticking Kimmie. If I leave you here I won't have to worry about you and Stoppable getting in our way ever again.”
Kim stared into her eyes, scrunching her nose, trying to figure out Shego's odd behavior. “You didn't get hit with a moodulator chip again, did you?”
Shaking her head, Shego sighed, the disappointment clear in her voice. “Tsk, tsk, you don't think I'm going to fall for that do you?”
“Fall for what?” Kim asked, confused.
“Tricking me into doubting myself and letting you go.” Leaning back from Kim, Shego ran her free hand down Kim's side. “Don't you feel the adrenalin? Doesn't the fear of being blown up excite you? Make you want to do something”
“Excite me?” Kim was sure she was missing something but she wasn't sure what. Shego should have been running away, not keeping her prisoner.
“Or feel something else?” Shego winked at her.
Before Kim could answer, not really following the direction this increasingly bizarre conversation was taking, there was a horrendous explosion and the world seemed to fall in on her.
Kim groaned, her head pounding. Breathing in a lungful of dust, she coughed, trying to clear her throat. Her face felt like it was coated with dried mud. She struggled to open her eyes, blinking furiously to get rid of the dust and dirt coating them. Looking around blearily in the dark, through watering eyes, as far as she could tell she was still glued to the wall.
She could barely move, something warm and immovable was pinned to her chest. One hand, her left, was free but the other was numb; like something heavy had been pressing against it for a long time. The free hand was resting against the warm thing in front of her.
“Shego?” she asked as loudly as she could while trying to avoid inhaling too much dust. Getting no answer she tried to feel around with her free hand. It must be Shego she thought, blushing, her hand encountering a breast as she tried to determine the state of her companion.
Stretching out as far as possible, her free hand encountered another wall on the other side of Shego. Working her way up Shego's back she cautiously felt the back of Shego's head, trying to find something that would explain why she was unconscious. Kim grimaced when she encountered a wet spot at the back of Shego's head. She must have been hit by something when the lair exploded. “Shego?” she said, slightly louder than before, but there was no response.
Maybe Ron would find them? Soon, she hoped. There seemed to be plenty of air and it wasn't cold. But an unconscious and bleeding Shego, no matter how weird she'd been behaving before the explosion, wasn't good. She didn't think she could get them both out of there on her own.
Kim struggled to reach down and retrieve her Kimmunicator. She could feel it pressing against her right leg in its usual pocket but there wasn't enough room to get to it. Closing her eyes she concentrated on listening for any sounds of rescue but all she could hear was Shego's shallow breathing.
She had no idea how long they'd been trapped in the lair but it had already been a long day before she and Ron had been called out on the mission and Kim could feel herself starting to drift off. She struggled to stay awake but it was a losing battle. Just before succumbing, she thought she heard a voice in her head. “Make your choice. Are you ready to be strong?” it whispered.
“Everything is possible for a Possible.” she mumbled semi-coherently. The thought that being stronger would certainly be useful at the moment had just barely crossed her mind when Kim felt something go through her. It was almost like she'd been zapped with another one of Drakken's inventions. A warm feeling swept through her body. It started with her toes and moved up through her legs, past her knees and hips, leaving them tingling in its wake. It enveloped her chest and flowed out through her arms. Lastly it bathed her face in a warm breeze.
Re-energized, Kim wasn't going to look a gift horse in the mouth, not that she was prone to looking in a horse's mouth. Flexing her stuck hand, she was able to wiggle it enough to pull it loose. She winced as sharp pains radiated from it as blood started circulating through it again. Her movements must have loosened something, she thought, blinking in the sudden light. Turning her head slightly, she could see Shego's bruised face. From the colors of the bruises, she suspected they must have been stuck there for several hours.
Reaching out with both hands, Kim braced herself and pushed against the wall that was pressing them together, just above Shego's shoulders. It moved slightly but not enough. Wiggling her hips she tried to loosen her legs. They were longer and stronger than her arms. Even one might do it. As she struggled to loosen herself, Kim noticed that one of her legs was only held in place by her pants. If they wasn't still glued to the wall behind her it would be free.
Taking a deep breath, Kim kicked out to the side in a move only a cheerleader turned martial artist could have even considered attempting. It took several tried before she achieved the results she was looking for. With a loud rip, Kim's leg came free of the wall, leaving a strip of material behind. “Hope there's a Club Banana nearby,” Kim said.
Bracing herself again, Kim pushed against the wall with her free leg. She could feel the strain but it was moving very slowly away from where she and Shego were trapped. She could hear things falling as it tilted away from them. As it moved to a point almost too far for her leg to reach, Kim gave it a hard kick.
The wall fell with a large, dull thump that seemed to shake everything. No longer jammed between Kim and the wall, Shego started to collapse onto the ground. Seeing a wave of thick dust headed their way and feeling small bits of stone hitting her head and shoulders from somewhere above them, Kim grabbed Shego before she could slip any further and shielded her face, breathing shallowly as the dust cloud enveloped them.
“Ron!” she shouted after the dust had cleared. And again. She waited a few minutes but there was still no answer. Ron might be almost indestructible but he usually took less time to find her than this.
Surprisingly, Shego wasn't very heavy but Kim knew she needed to put her down. She suspected the only way to get off the wall was to get out of her clothes. Not something she could do holding an unconscious Shego. There wasn't a lot of light in their corner of the lair. Why Drakken had picked an old mountain mine for a lair again was beyond her.
Kim slowly loosened her grip on Shego, using her loose leg to guide her down to the floor. Panicking wasn't something she did well but she was starting to worry about her nemesis. She'd always thought of Shego as tough but she must have been unconscious for hours.
Kim squirmed in her clothes. If she pulled too hard they would rip like the one pant leg and the chance that she would find anything her size or even wearable in the remains of the lair wasn't very likely. She could reach her pants to undo them so it was going to have to be shirt first. Fortunately it was stretchable. As long as the glue hadn't soaked into anything else it was a piece of cake, like all those times she'd had to change into her spare clothes in the back seat of a car on the way back from a mission.
“Yeow!” Kim screeched involuntarily as a small patch of bare skin on her back that had also been glued to the wall was pulled loose as she struggled out of her shirt. It was like pulling off a band-aid. A large band-aid. “Man, Rufus has the right idea. Hairless is the way to go!”
After unzipping her cargo pants to give herself more room, Kim bent at the waist and touched the floor with her palms. ‘That's going to hurt!’ she thought, brushing as much dirty away as possible to give herself a smooth surface. Taking a deep breath, Kim leaned forward onto her hands while trying to kick off with her feet. Seconds later she found herself following the wall, tumbling over onto her back in a heap instead of the handstand she'd been hoping for. Rolling over onto her hands and knees, Kim shakily pushed herself to a sitting position.
The distinctive beep of her kimmunicator startled Kim from her daze. Giving a quick glance at Shego, who still seemed to be out, Kim stood up and retrieved her kimmunicator from the remains of her pants. Putting her thumb over the kimmunicator's miniscule camera, she turned it on.
“Hey Wade, what's the sitch?” she asked, ending her question with a cough.
“Are you alright, Kim? Your kimmunicator seems to be broken.” She could hear the faint sound of Wade doing something.
“I'm fine. Mostly.” Kim said. “I'm doing a lot better than Shego. The explosion must have knocked her out.” Pointing her kimmunicator at the remains of her clothes on the wall she removed her thumb. “Wade? I'm having clothes issues right now. Can you fix them?”
“Oh.” A faint red light bathed her clothes for a few seconds. “Hmm, that looks familiar. A hypersonic phase disruptor should get them down.” She could hear the click of keys as he typed.
A high pitched noise suddenly flooded the dusty room, forcing Kim to drop the kimmunicator as she attempted to protect her ears. When it stopped her ears hurt and her clothes were lying in the dirt. Ignoring Wade's muffled voice, Kim dashed over to them and after giving them a quick shake, quickly pulled them on. Frowning at the rip in the one leg, she took a quick glance over at the still unconscious Shego before picking up the kimmunicator.
“Wade, I need you to scan Shego for me,” Kim asked.
“What am I looking for?” he asked.
“I don't know. Maybe one of Drakken's mind control gadgets?” Kim suggested. “She was acting ferociously odd right before the lair exploded. And I don't think she should still be unconscious.”
“That was a huge explosion, Kim,” Wade told her. “Half the mountain is gone. The only thing left of the lair is the room you and Shego are in.”
“Oh…” At his words, Kim couldn't help counting her fingers and toes, even though she thought she would have noticed if they were missing. She pointed the kimmunicator at Shego and waited for the scan to finish. “Anything?”
“She's been drinking,” Wade said. “But other than that she seems normal. For Shego anyway.”
“I'd noticed.” Kim muttered, recalling the smell of Shego's breath just before the explosion. “That's one of the odd things.” she told him. “I don't think she drinks while she's working. Can you tell Global Justice that we're going to need a stretcher to get her out of here?”
“Already taken care of,” Wade said. “They should be there in a few minutes.”
“And Wade?” Kim asked.
“He was tangled up in Drakken's escape balloon,” Wade told her. “Global Justice is bringing him back.”
“Okay. Can you tell him I'll need my spare pants? Between the explosion and the glue they aren't doing too well. Please and thank you!”
“Got it.” Wade answered. Kim pretended not to hear his snicker.
Sitting down on a large chunk of concrete next to Shego, Kim idly brushed the dust from her foe. She hadn't said anything to Wade about her sudden increase in strength but that could wait until later. It wasn't like the boost she'd gotten that one time from Hego. No glow or any other visible sign. She still felt like herself, just stronger. It would probably go away on its own.
Kim looked at the two pieces of her calculus book in her hands in dismay. All she'd wanted to do was her homework. It had been six hours since she'd been rescued from the remains of Drakken's lair and her strength still hadn't returned to normal. In fact, her hearing seemed to have been getting better since then. She was sure she was just imagining it but Kim thought she could hear the Tweebs discussing some plan to embarrass her in front of Bonnie and the rest of the squad and her parents whispering things to each other that she really didn't want to know.
Putting the pieces of book down, Kim stared at her hands. They didn't feel any different. But the bruises on her wrists where Shego had squeezed them? They had already faded to a faint yellow. Surprised, Kim started looking in vain for scratches and other bruises she remembered getting during her fight with Shego and when the lair had exploded.
The familiar beeping of her kimmunicator interrupted her examination.
“Hey Wade. What's up?” she asked, looking towards the small device in its charging stand.
“Shego escaped.” Wade told her.
“Did she take Drakken with her?” Kim asked.
“Of course.” Wade said.
“Who won the pool this time?” Kim asked. She refused to participate herself but she was aware of it. Global Justice never seemed to learn. She suspected that someone at GJ intentionally made it easy for Shego to escape but Wade had found no proof, though he didn't allow any GJ agents to participate just in case.
“We don't bet on her escape times.” Wade protested. “Tim won.” He added.
“Wade?” Kim asked. “I need a big favor.”
“What kind of favor?” He asked, clearly puzzled.
“I need you to keep a secret for me for a little while.” Kim said. She wasn't sure what was compelling her to keep this a secret but it felt important.
“I think Drakken hit me with a strength ray at the same time he did whatever made Shego act strange.”
“Global Justice didn't find anything wrong with Shego.” Wade said.
“Can you scan me and tell me what you find?” Kim asked nervously. “Whatever he did hasn't worn off yet.” Grabbing her calculus book she waved the pieces at the kimmunicator's camera.
“Sure.” His fingers flew over his keyboard as a red beam scanned her, starting at her head and slowly moving down to her feet.
“Sorry Kim. Nothing. Maybe it's just adrenaline left over from this afternoon?” he suggested.
“Promise you won't tell anyone.” Kim said. “I'm sure it'll go away in a day or two. I don't want to worry anyone.”
“Thanks Wade. Talk with you tomorrow.” Reaching over, she turned off the kimmunicator before making a note to herself that she needed to get a new calculus book first thing in the morning.