June 9, 2005
Sitting in the backseat of the car, Kim was silent as she observed what should have been familiar scenery rapidly flashing before her as her parents drove her home. Her parents were in the two front seats, and when they weren’t exchanging worried expressions about Kim’s well-being and safety, they were stealing a surreptitious glance at their daughter every few minutes, just to make sure she was alright. She appeared to be exhausted, and aside from her old injuries, she seemed to be taking the situation relatively well.
How can everything be alright when you can’t remember who you are?Kim’s mother was pondering thoughtfully. It’s like trying to solve a puzzle with missing pieces.
Anne Possible frowned as she realized that from this moment on, even if Kim regained all her memories, her life had effectively been split into two distinct periods: pre-accident and post-accident. How Kim viewed the world now was dependent on if, when, and how she regained her lost memories. She seemed to have a basic working knowledge of herself and her family, and Kim’s mother couldn’t help but wonder if such knowledge was due to Shego’s doing, or was it due to the natural progression of Kim’s healing process?
And furthermore…there was still that little interlude with Shego - that shady grey area of so much concern.
It had only lasted a few days, but what impact did Shego have on Kim’s fragile and confused psyche? What did she do to her? What did she tell Kim? Shego did, after all, have a blank slate to work with. She could have instilled anything she wanted. There was no one there to stop her.
Anne gave an internal shudder as she couldn’t help but think of what could have happened. Shego could have killed Kim outright. And if Shego had been in a less-than-magnanimous mood, she could have taken a long time to do it – drawing out Kim’s death slowly and exacting torture (physical and/or mental) on the helpless and vulnerable redhead. She could have brainwashed Kim into being a servant – even a slave perhaps? Another bodyguard to Drakken? Kim did, after all, possess an admirable amount of athletic training and prowess. She could have kept Kim locked up in some godforsaken cell somewhere as a hostage, using her for ransom – a bargaining chip.
Or…Shego could have taken Kim and just disappeared with her, leaving an empty gaping hole in her wake. Shego did have enough monetary funds to go wherever she wanted – a private island even.
And yet…Kim seemed fundamentally unchanged. But why? That was the big question: Why? Either it was something rotten, or something genuinely…good? But the idea of Shego doing something good was such a foreign concept. It could have been part of a wicked plan to somehow corrupt Kim, but how would that work, exactly? Didn’t Shego realize that Kim would eventually regain her memories? What would she do then? Kill her? Was Shego capable of cold-blooded murder?
Stealing yet another glance at her droopy-eyed daughter, Mrs. Dr. Possible wondered what Kim was thinking about this debacle. Did Kim think Shego was a murderer?
Sighing, Anne Possible thought back to when Global Justice had originally approached her, wanting to outline a plan for Kim’s rescue. Back then, the blueprint had seemed so simple and foolproof, but in the end, nothing had gone to plan. It was supposed to be a simple and quick retrieval mission. No one expected Shego to have been caring for Kim, nor did anyone imagine that Kim would want to stay with Shego. No one was supposed to get hurt.
But, as fate seemed to want it, they did. Aside from several bruises and minor abrasions, one of the officers had suffered a concussion as well as second-degree burns from Shego’s plasma flames. Anne Possible had volunteered to treat the officer with the concussion (she was, after all, the most respected brain specialist in the area), and thankfully, it wasn’t serious. The whole outcome had been…strange.
With almost superhuman strength and the ability to generate and control plasma fire, Shego has had more than enough chances to demonstrate her lethalness; however, she’s never actually killed anyone. Not even when she was feeling threatened by the police showing up at her private residence and attempting to take Kim away. She was angry, furious, irate, and acted accordingly…but still…it seemed that she had been holding something back.
The realization hit Anne with a surprising intensity.
Was the answer really that obvious?
Because she’s not as dark as she likes us to believe.
The situation was becoming more and more complicated, and Anne felt herself sigh for what seemed to be the hundredth time that day. She had to tell Kim that Shego wasn’t a murderer, even though Kim had thought it was painfully clear that Shego was. No one would be able to remain standing upright after being hit by a plasma blast, no matter how fit they were, didn’t Kim realize that?
Anne shook her head. It was too late, and her thoughts were already jumbled enough. There would be time in the morning to sort everything out. Besides…then they could analyze the objects retrieved from Shego’s house, hoping to gain some sort of insight into her intents. Ron had called several minutes earlier, before they had left the hospital. He seemed confused and distressed about something, but outright refused to tell Anne what was causing his agitation.
We’re all uptight right now. Everything seems like a big deal. Sleep is the mother of all counsel. Let up hope we’ll be refreshed come sunrise.
The clouds were heavier now, and the nocturnal temperature was certainly chillier than expected. An ominous rumble from the dark sky threatened rain even as a few frigid droplets of water began to land on the shadowed pavement, leaving small black circles. A shadow darted across the street.
Damn you Stoppable.Shego thought as she suddenly realized that she had completely forgotten to talk to the buffoon about the one topic she had been meaning (ever since the first scramble) to attempt to discuss with him: the items swiped from her house during the raid – a certain cardboard box more specifically. Now, not only did Ron possess the soon-to-be-controversial items, but he would no doubt be showing them to Kim as soon as he got the chance. This definitely posed a significant problem.
I had just wanted to talk, to explain that I never meant to hurt Kim. Hurt Kim - how could I? I wanted to tell you why I had those letters, and why I sent out those letters. There was a reason; there was a reason for everything I did. But no. You had to go attacking me before I could even say a word. Not that I could blame you though. I guess I deserved it.
You deserve much worse.A deep part of her psyche whispered, mocking her. Shego frowned.
It wasn’t my fault.
It was a desperate declaration; a strong thought pushed forth with such force. A fleeting image of Kim’s body falling, twisting, and spiraling through the air dared to show itself in Shego’s mind, and a familiar rush of anger and guilt rushed through her. Shego bit her lip, trying to block out the painful reminder. But the vision was playing itself in her brain, and her mind’s eye couldn’t blink.
Not your fault? Are you sure about that?
A bout of cruel laughter erupted through her mind, as if to say “Yeah, right.”
Creeping through the dimly-lit streets of Middleton, Shego paused in mid-stride, a news broadcast on a television in a display window of some generic store catching her keen eye. Scanning the area for any observers, Shego darted across the street to have a better look at the ‘Breaking News Headline’ flashing across the screen. Her eyes going wide and her breath catching in her throat as she realized what the repercussions of the broadcast would be, she sprinted off into the darkness.
She had to find Kim. Immediately.
Behind her, the broadcast continued to loop, the television announcers looking positively pleased with themselves.
“Please stay with us as we continue to follow this developing story: Kim Possible, world famous teen superhero, has just been spotted at the Middleton Hospital after having been missing for five days. Our anonymous source has claimed that the superhero was released only a few minutes ago after being treated for several broken bones and amnesia.”
All over the world, many people could be found sighing in relief at the news that the heroine had been found and effectively treated for her injuries. But for all the millions cheering in triumph, there were a handful of persons cheering for completely different reasons.
Their smiles were sinister.
“KIM! WATCH OUT!”
Kim yelped in surprise as she was quickly surrounded by a whirlwind of two young boys – her brothers, she realized. Diving at her and tackling her, they attempted to push her to the ground as a rapidly moving object sailed into the room, ricocheting off of several cabinet doors. Her dark green eyes scanning the kitchen for anything to protect herself from the rocket, Kim’s gaze rested on a stray frying pan still sitting atop the stove. Stretching her arm to reach it, she wasted no energy in swinging it for all she was worth, effectively interrupting the rocket’s trajectory and leaving it a crumpled heap of spare metal on the floor.
“TWEEBS!” she bellowed, her patience running on low. Only then did she realize that she had reflexively called them “tweebs.” Her hand flew to her mouth in stunned surprise.
Exchanging guilty looks, Tim and Jim pointed at each other.
“He did it!” They exclaimed in unison.
Kim only growled slightly in response. “I so don’t have time for this. I’m tired, and I just would like to sleep. Is that too much to ask?”
“Sorry Kim. We were just bored, and figured we would get a head start on the science fair project.” Tim apologized, obviously trying to quell his older sister’s rising anger.
Kim blinked and opened her mouth; however, her mind was overcome by another wave of fuzzy and almost incomprehensible images.
“I have to baby-sit them AGAIN? But, but – “
“No ‘buts’ Kim. Your father has to stay late to work on the project now that he’s on the planning committee. And I can’t help that I’m being called in for an emergency surgery. The man was thrown from his motorcycle during the collision, and he fractured the parietal bone of his skull. I’m guessing he’s suffering increased cranial pressure due to fluid buildup.”
“But…couldn’t you call another babysitter? I promised Ron I would meet him at Bueno Nacho tonight for dinner…” She protested lightly, but still knowing she wouldn’t change her mother’s mind.
“No Kim. How about you call Ron up and ask him to help you, or at least keep you company?”
She sighed. “Okay…”
She and Ron were riding some kind of vehicle – a motorcycle! Feeling a helmet firmly strapped under her chin, Kim could hear the high-pitched whine of the rocket engines propelling her and Ron forward down the streets of Middleton.
A giant red and black robot was behind them, chasing them and shooting at them. Hands tightly wrapped around the handlebars, Kim steered sharply to the right, evading the green blast from the robot. The weight distribution now uneven, the small vehicle began to tip to the right, but the extra propulsion of the rockets’ engines assisted in restoring the balance.
‘Finally! The tweebs’ rocket experiments are actually paying off!’ She thought.
She was drifting through the air, papers were flying everywhere, and Ron was swiping at them unsuccessfully.
“Serves you right!” she heard herself laugh, still looking at a dejected Ron who had managed to grab a few loose sheets.
She was in a kitchen – THIS kitchen – and pouring herself a bowl of cereal – sans milk.
“Ron’s such a baby about free-falling…” She was explaining to her parents.
Kim felt herself smile. Ron a baby? Not from what she had seen of him thus far…
“Hey Kim!” Jim gently poked her in the stomach. “You okay?”
Kim shook herself out of her thoughts and returned her gaze to her younger brothers. She nodded unconsciously as she noticed the resemblance the boys had to her parents – the same dusty brown hair color as her father, and the same cerulean blue irises, obviously inherited from her mother. Not that family resemblance had any impact on the closeness of a family, but in this scenario, Kim found that it was indeed helpful.
She smiled at them, feeling an immediate bond reform with the children. Jim and Tim seemed to easily reciprocate Kim’s intent, and hugged her tighter, ignoring the fact that she had just called them Tweebs, a nickname usually reserved for when she was annoyed with them.
“Tweebs, Kimmie-cub?” James Possible inquired, raising an eyebrow. “Looks like your memory is coming back.” With an encouraging smile, he gently gave Kim a pat on the back. “Like I say, anything’s possible for a Possible.”
“Yeah…I…I guess so.” Kim smiled, feeling somehow triumphant that she had remembered something, even if it was just a nickname.
“How did you remember?” James inquired. “Was it a conscious process, or did it just pop out?”
“I…I don’t really know Dad. I just did.” Kim shrugged, the feeling of triumph becoming ever more insistent.
“Kim, Kim!” Jim and Tim chattered, vying for her attention.
“What happened to you? Where did you go for so long? Why were you in the hospital? What went wrong on your last mission? Who found you?”
“Hey!” Anne interrupted, attempting to steer the twins away from a flustered Kim. “Kim’s just had a very rough day, she’s tired, and it’s late. You two should be asleep by now, but we only let you stay up to welcome Kim home.”
“Awww, mom!” They whined.
“No arguing kids. Now, off to bed for you two.” Anne shooed the kids away. “You can pester Kim for details tomorrow.”
“Aww, okay. Fine.” Jim and Tim pouted, as they realized they had little chance of winning the debate.
As they scampered off, Jim turned around, giving a last glance at his older sister.
“Don’t worry about that Drakken and Shego. You’ll get them next time!”
As Kim felt a familiar rush of heat to her cheeks and knew she was blushing, she cast her gaze downwards and let out a slow breath, trying to hide her discomfort. While James muttered something under his breath, a frown evident on his face, Anne shot a quick glance at Kim, trying to decipher her actions.
“Thanks.” She muttered weakly.
As she watched in silence, Jim turned around and scurried out of sight, yelling a last goodbye and goodnight.
Shego…How could so many emotions be evoked from one single word, only five letters long?
No, no, no!Kim scolded herself, squeezing her eyes shut. Don’t think about her!
The momentary lull in action didn’t last long. Walking over to her daughter and wrapping a supportive arm around her shoulders, Anne smiled. “I’ll show you to your room…unless you remember where it is?”
“No, I don’t.” Kim murmured, a hint of dejection in her voice. “Could you show me?”
Anne smiled encouragingly. “Of course sweetheart.”
Standing in her room, Kim wasn’t quite sure what she was supposed to be feeling. Familiarity? Security? Was she supposed to be overloaded by emotionally draining flashbacks? Was she supposed to be joyous that she was home? Was she supposed to gasp in recognition?
Or was it some other emotion? One that didn’t have a corresponding word, perhaps? Something completely different?
This whole situation was feeling more and more like a twisted standardized exam question: A, B, C, D (A and B), D (B and C), or E (all the of above).
Walking around the perimeter of her room, Kim let her fingers idly trail over everything – the walls, the scattered posters adorning aforementioned walls, the bookcases, her desk, her computer, her bed, her various knickknacks collected over time, her telescope…
Peering at her bookshelf, Kim smiled as she recognized the authors: Shakespeare, Milton, Dickens, Atwood, Chaucer, among various other classic writers. On the self below, she found several books about physical training, booklets about proper stretching and muscle toning, as well as a nutrition guide specifically written for the young female athlete.
“At least I was intelligent.” She murmured to herself as she continued browsing over her literary collection.
Moving on to inspect her desk, Kim switched on her computer, listening to the faint hum as the fan switched on. As she sat there, her gaze was drawn to a small blue electronic device resting on top of what appeared to be a pile of unfinished homework. Idly picking it up and inspecting it, Kim decided it was like an oversized and more technologically advanced variation on a cell phone. Perhaps it was a pocket computer? Kim gently placed it back on the desk, promising herself that she would attempt to fiddle with it the next day – perhaps when she was more awake and alert.
The melodic ring of the computer called for her attention again.
She felt herself unconsciously arch an eyebrow as she noticed that her desktop wallpaper was composed of a collage of villain mug shots with a small text box containing cursory information about each one. And right there, in the center, was a picture of Shego with her hands on her hips, a smug smile on her face – the same picture pinned up on the inside of her locker.
Not a mug shot…she’s wearing a green Club Banana sweater…Kim noticed.
Hey….that was the sweater I wanted.
Shaking her head, Kim opened up a new window, connected to the Internet, and immediately opened up her Favorites folder, secretly wishing that she could find more clues to her former life through her surfing preferences. Frowning and letting herself utter a small growl, she found her saved websites of little help: various homework help sites, numerous fighting and physical training-related sites, and assorted other random favorites – usually links to online games, probably used to procrastinate and pass the time. As she continued to scroll down, one particular website caught her eye: on by a healthy curiosity, she clicked the link. Her eyes widened reflexively as she began to read the contents on her own website.
“Baby-sitting. Interesting.” She commented to herself as she continued to skim the webpage. “All this…all this hero business – just because I wanted to baby-sit. Who would have thought…”
Reading further, Kim found a section about the history and missions of Team Possible. She let out a sigh as she stumbled upon a page with various profiles of her foes, one of which was, naturally, Shego.
Guess I better read these so I know who I’ll be dealing with.She reasoned with herself.
Clicking the PRINT icon in her window, Kim made sure the printer was on and running before getting up and resuming the inspection of her room. Cautiously opening the doors to her closet, as if she half-expected something to jump out of it, Kim peered in, squinting as she took a few seconds to let her eyes adjust to the darkness. Fumbling, she blindly searched for a light before her fingers brushed against the sought-after switch. Wasting little time in flicking the light on, she took a step back to survey her clothing. In addition to the usual shirts, skirts, pants, there was also a pale sky blue dress that appeared to have some kind of burn tracing the bottom. Kim chuckled at the sight. Must have been due to one of her saving-the-world missions. Too bad – it really was a gorgeous dress.
Pushing aside more of the clothing, Kim tilted her head as she found two suits stuffed towards the back of the closet – one of them a white spandex-looking outfit traced with electric blue lines. The other was a black and green suit with alternating patches of black and green. Kim narrowed her eyes. That latter suit…it was so familiar. As Kim gingerly picked up the green and black suit, her fingers tracing random patterns over the surprisingly soft material, she caught a scent of something…a blend of spices, very distinctive. It wasn’t a bad smell, but it managed to be different and recognizable at the same time. She clutched the suit tighter, her fingers somehow recognizing the texture of the fabric.
A brief flash of pain forced her to squeeze her eyes shut, and her temples began to throb slightly. Her internal movie was playing again.
Donned in the exact same green and black suits, Kim and Shego (Shego also sporting a pink apron) ran towards each other. Bumping into each other, they shook their heads as a naked mole rat nimbly bounced away. There was some sort of red rectangular thing glued to their foreheads, their eyes unusually blank and unfeeling. Even Shego seemed subdued. What’s going on?
Ron was there…and the tweebs…and that blue-skinned man with black hair. Dr…Dr…
DRAKKEN! His name was Dr. Drakken!
Kim found herself sitting at the kitchen table, staring at Shego, an amused smile tugging at her lips.
“Oh…you, uh…you wouldn’t happen to have a pink frilly apron, would you?”
Shego narrowed her eyes at Kim, and Kim couldn’t quite tell if Shego was furious or amused.
“No.” Shego replied slowly. “Why do you ask?”
“I just had this image of you in a pink frilly apron, and I look at you and say ‘Nice…apron.’”
There was a moment’s pause before Kim shook her head, reconsidering her earlier statement. “Never mind. I’m sure it was a weird dream or something.”
“Yeah, probably. Can you really imagine me in pink?”
“Nah. I mean, only if you being mind controlled or something like that and someone MADE you wear pink. But other than that, no, not really.”
The pair’s amused laughter was echoing in Kim’s mind.
Kim, still letting her eyes remain shut, let out a deep breath, trying to calm her racing mind. As suddenly as the vision appeared, it was just as quickly gone and lost – a fleeting intangible thing that seemed to enjoy playing cat-and-mouse games with her soul.
Upon slowly opening her eyes, she noticed that her trembling hand was still clutching the suit, her knuckles white. The scent was familiar now – it was Shego. Letting out a cry, Kim dropped the outfit as if it had burned her skin.
“Its HERS! I kept it! What the hell is wrong with me?”
She staggered away slowly, her heart pounding in her chest.
“I need to get to bed. Yeah, sleep. Sleep would be nice right now.” Kim mused, bringing up a hand to gently massage her temples. Grabbing a loose sleep-shirt from one of the hangers, Kim quickly changed, tossing her dirty clothes on the floor. She would deal with them tomorrow, perhaps when her mind wasn’t so exhausted.
Climbing into bed, Kim finally felt herself relax, both physically and mentally. It had been a long day, not to mention the week she had endured. Ron had mentioned something about finding clues to Shego’s intents after the rescue, and had wondered if he could stop by for a visit the next day. Snuggling deeper into the warmth and perceived protection of her sheets, sleep came quickly, and the world fell away as Kim dozed off.
Her dreams; however, were anything but tranquil.
There was black and grey smoke floating everywhere, the remains of Shego’s famous plasma fire. Judging from the various scattered bits of rubble, they had indeed done a number to this building…
Locking arms, breathing heavily, Shego flashed Kim a predatory grin.
“Hey! Eric’s cute. With you out of the picture, maybe I’ll date him!”
A surge of anger and rage and betrayal inundated Kim, and with a renewed round of force, she pushed Shego away from her.
She blinked and was somewhere else – a large circular room with all the emergency sprinklers spouting cool water a full blast. Her perfectly calculated flying leap had turned out to be not so perfectly calculated after all, and slipping on the watery tiles, Kim found herself skidding towards Shego before finally colliding with the older woman.
In a split-second, Kim found herself lying on the ground, her hair splayed out underneath her. She was looking up at Shego, who had a playful and amused expression on her smiling face. She opened her mouth to say something, but quickly closed it again, feeling a tickling in the back of her throat. In response, Shego only grinned wider.
“What was that Princess?”
As Shego flinched away from Kim, the back of her gloved hand wiping her face free of Kim’s germs, Kim braced herself on her elbows, grabbing a tissue to blow her stuffy nose.
Aha. She was sick.
Kim blinked again, and found herself atop a building, dressed in that white and blue suit in her closet. Her hair dripping from the rain, a smug smile graced her face as she spotted a certain pale-green-skinned woman attempting to sneak away from the battle scene. When Shego noticed she had been spotted by the redhead, she immediately assumed a fighting stance. Kim chuckled.
“You know what I really hate?” She inquired, still eying Shego.
“That your boyfriend melted?” Shego supplied, prodding Kim.
And with a swift and powerful roundhouse kick, Kim sent Shego flying into the electrical tower. As she witnessed the sparks fly and the tower collapse, Kim felt a satisfied smile creep onto her face.
She blinked, and found herself staring at a rather muscularly toned Ron. What was THAT about? This wasn’t the somewhat scrawny boy she knew.
In a split second, she found herself diving in an air ventilation shaft. To her right, Shego was there too, her dark green eyes shielding some emotion as she quickly turned her gaze forward - away from the redhead. Now, that’s strange…
Why is Shego here?
Kim blinked again.
And could hear Shego’s cruel laughter. Looking above her, Shego and Drakken were in some sort of hovercraft with Shego perched on the edge and waving some small metal object in Kim’s face, her trademarked arrogant grin on her face.
“Nice try Kimmie, but not quite in my league.”
Kim felt herself lower her body, the muscles in her calves tensing with anticipation. The hovercraft was ascending even higher now, and that smug grin was still plastered on Shego’s refined features.
“Till next time Princess!” The raven-haired woman called down to Kim.
Kim; however, wasn’t about to take the back-handed compliment lying down. With a burst of energy, Kim launched herself through the air towards the hovercraft, the tendons and ligaments in her lower back stretching themselves as she reached out, her eyes focused on the moving vehicle in front of her.
She realized; however, that there was a reason she had been struggling with her latest physics problem set, and was now suffering the practical ramifications of her slight miscalculation.
As her fingers barely brushed the edge of the cool metal surface, Kim felt her heart had skipped a few beats, the familiar rush of adrenaline surging through her stunned body. As she reached the apex of her jump and began to fall backwards, she unconsciously found herself staring at Shego’s emotionless face.
As the velocity of her descent increased, Kim found her gaze still drawn to Shego’s face…and for the first time, she saw real emotion flicker through Shego’s dark green eyes…
But she was still falling…
This would be so much EASIER if it weren’t raining! Shego growled to herself as she skillfully navigated the streets of Middleton, abiding by a route she had memorized - a familiar route she had traveled time and time again under the strictest cover of darkness.
The weather had progressively gotten worse – the already-gloomy twilight had evolved to a rather stormy and humid night, the rain seeming to fall with more intensity with each passing minute. It was also noticeably colder than before, and Shego gave an involuntary shudder as the frigid water began to soak through her clothing.
How disgustingly cliché.Shego scoffed, as she brushed a damp lock of her ebony hair out of her pale face. Blinking the cool water out of her eyes, Shego looked up to the building in front of her, its shape familiar and somehow comforting, even in the turbulent weather. It was somehow like coming home, even though it wasn’t hers.
With a single practiced graceful motion, Shego hoisted herself up onto the lowest hanging branch of a sturdy oak tree before ascending a few branches higher. It only took her a few seconds to reach her destination – a medium-sized branch shielded by the dense foliage of leaves. A quick flash of lightening and the low rumble of thunder make Shego apprehensively retreat deeper into the camouflage, while still attempting to peer into the nearest window unnoticed.
To Shego’s disappointment, the torrential downpour was making it extremely hard to see inside the window, but Shego’s trained and sharp eye was still able to make out the faint image of a sleeping girl with copper hair. Seeing Kim appear so helpless filled Shego with a surge of protectiveness over the younger girl. With her memory half missing and half her limbs immobile in casts and splints, Kim was, for all intents and purposes, vulnerable.
It was such a bittersweet word, one that was usually only whispered with the faintest of breaths when no one else could overhear.
The weather still hadn’t lightened up any, and as Shego continued to crouch out of sight, memories of their interactions began to slowly infiltrate her psyche as she silently watched over the sleeping girl, keeping an eye on her.
The first time they had fought, it seemed that Kim had merely been evading and dodging Shego’s attacks. The auburn-haired girl was a cheerleader, and her body was flexible and pliant for quick simple gymnastics. At that time, Shego found herself annoyed at the nuisance, one which she thought would quickly fade away as Kim wouldn’t be able to train enough to match her own martial arts skills. As fate would have it; however, Kim demonstrated her proficiency as a quick learner and within the span of a few months, she had proved her athletic skills were on the same level as Shego’s.
It was at this point where Shego had to admit to herself, even grudgingly, that she had to at least respect the teenage cheerleader for her still-developing physical prowess. It was the first time, Shego had realized, that she had finally encountered someone who was able to match herself, someone who was able to keep up with her, and someone who was able to even challenge her.
As they began to meet more often, and their fights became more insistent, more passionate, and more charged, Shego’s reluctant admission of respect evolved into an admiration of the girl’s idealism, her ever-positive outlook on life, and maybe, perhaps, the touch of arrogance Kim was able to wield during a fight – a certain light shining in her dark green eyes that silently said, “Bring it on.”
It was during these fights, Shego realized, that she was developing an attraction to her arch-nemesis. The way they moved together, the way their bodies did the talking for them – it was a wordless dance that they would rehearse time and time again, the only audience present would be a blonde-haired sidekick and a blue-skinned scientist. They went well together – light and dark – equal, but opposite. There was fire, there was excitement, and even though Kim tried to deny it, she enjoyed the chase.
Kim was a growing obsession Shego knew she must have, and Shego was a temptation Kim could not refuse.
A loud creak shook Shego out of her reverie, and she blinked as she felt the branch under her sway and waver. She instinctively grabbed tighter to the rough bark as a gust of wind threatened her balance. Another powerful burst of air blew through, and this time, Shego had no control over the tree branch as it cracked and sent her flying through the air. With a muffled thump, Shego found herself slammed against the glass of Kim’s bedroom window, her gloved hands scrabbling for purchase on the slippery ledge. She stole a look inside, only to see the sleeping girl stir, consciousness becoming apparent.
The rain seemed to be falling more insistently now, and Shego’s already weak hold on the ledge was failing.
Quickly and quietly, Shego slid open the window, pausing for a moment as she saw Kim begin to wake up, probably disturbed by the sudden influx of cold air, a yawn drawing itself from her perfect mouth. With a satisfied sigh, Kim began to rub her eyes unconsciously. She tossed her head, her copper hair spreading out behind her. Shego continued to stare at the girl; however, her hold on the edge of window sill was precarious. Kim began to stir again, and Shego knew she had to make a decision.
In or out Shego…one or the other…fall or face her.
In her mind’s eye, she was still falling, Shego’s face above her still etched in her vision.
Oh god, was that it? Did I just hit the ground? Why is there no pain?
Kim awoke with a start, her muscles reflexively tensing as if she were preparing for a fight. A thin layer of sweat covered her back, and her breathing was rapid.
“Just a dream…” she murmured groggily. “No…a nightmare.”
A sudden night breeze gently blew into the room and Kim shivered, grumbling something about sleep deprivation. As she got up to close the window, she thought she remembered doing this before. The action seemed so familiar, and a sudden feeling of deja-vu struck her.
She blinked, another flashback assaulting her senses.
‘I didn’t open this window.’ She was thinking as she tossed her covers aside, hopping out of bed.
Taking a quick glance outside, Kim scanned her surroundings, but found nothing of interest or importance. It was a crisp and clear night, and the rustle of the leaves in one of the trees, unusually loud at this time of night, sounded somewhere in the distance, but it was probably a cat or squirrel or something equally mundane…
She blinked again, and the real world was returned to her.
“My neighbor has a cat?” Kim wondered aloud as she gazed out the window, her mind still somewhat groggy from sleep. Nothing seemed out of place – the world was quiet and sleeping – something, she realized, that she should be doing as well. The weather was something rotten, but that wasn’t anything she could really change, could she? Kim rubbed her eyes, a purely unconscious and reflexive motion before turning around to head back to bed and settle in the warmth of the covers. She barely accomplished a few steps when she heard a familiar voice softly call her name.
To be continued…