June 11, 2005 – The Present
The crickets were chirping outside. Normally, their noise was a welcome interruption to the usually eerie silence of the night, but this time the unintentional cacophony was just annoying. Somewhere in the distance, a mouse screeched and was immediately snatched up by a silent barn owl. Directly outside the lab, the myriad security cameras continuously scanned the ground and air for any and all security threats, the most usual of which was a particular cheerleader with auburn hair. But tonight was calm, and there were no significant threats to be seen or heard. The hired security guards paced through their assigned rounds both inside the building and outside around the perimeter, occasionally giving each other a wave or wink or low grunt to let each other know that everything was still alright – no need to go into red alert yet.
Inside, everything was mostly tranquil as well. Muttering the lyrics to the latest song by Oh Boyz in his sleep, Senor Senior Junior’s foot unconsciously tapped along to the rhythm playing inside his head. Senor Senior Senior was smiling, the blueprint for the latest high precision laser gun clear in his head, along with visions of him using it to blast a few choice government buildings into oblivion. Hanging upside down, and suspended from a metal ceiling beam, Monkey Fist was snoring loudly, and the nearest monkey ninja gave him a vicious kick in the stomach to shut him up. In his sleep, Duff Killigan was humming and out-of-tune ditty that sounded a lot like Danny Boy, and two rooms down the hall, DNAmy was comfortably surrounded by an excess of cuddlebuddies with no less than eleven of her plush-toys somehow nestled between her arms. Even Drakken’s workbench was uninteresting – several plastic unused test tubes lay scattered next to a toolbox and a variety of different volume pipettes. The mad scientist himself was fast asleep, a thin line of drool slightly trickling out a corner of his mouth.
There was one person; however, not happily unconscious with the rest of the crew. Her green eyes were bloodshot, and dark lines were easily visible around her eyelids. Her raven-colored hair was tangled and a thin layer of greasy buildup was beginning to show her stress. Finally making a decision, she reached over to her nightstand and grabbed a yellow bottle full of round white pills. Taking one of them and swallowing it dry, she let herself flop back onto her back, her hair splaying out on the pillow underneath her. As the seconds and minutes ticked by, her mind started drifting and a half hour later, she was violently tossing and turning. She was dreaming…no, it was a nightmare…of a time that seemed like eons ago…
Across town, there was another woman with striking green eyes also dreaming of a time that seemed long past. And like her counterpart with ebony hair, this redhead was gasping in her sleep, unconsciously clutching her sheets in frustration and fear.
June 4, 2005 – The Past
“Hey Wade, what’s the sitch?” Kim grinned as she clicked her Kimmunicator on and slammed her locker shut, silently thanking a higher power that she only had one more class left before school got out, and freedom was hers.
“Hi Kim. Drakken and Shego are at it again. But I guessed you already knew that.” Wade chuckled.
Rolling her eyes, Kim laughed. “So not the drama Wade. We’ve dealt with them before, and Drakken’s an idiot. A smart idiot, but an idiot.” She added thoughtfully.
“You may be right Kim. My satellites have picked up strange electrical energy in the Grand Canyon. From my preliminary observations, it looks like Drakken has built some kind of time travel machine.”
“Time travel? He thinks he can actually build a time travel machine?” Kim scoffed, a hint of a laugh in her voice.
“Well, he thinks he can, and he actually did.” Wade shrugged. “Personally, I think he’s totally off with his design. I mean, the frequency he set the –“
“Whoa Wade.” Kim interrupted good-naturedly, flashing a smile. “I haven’t taken physics yet, remember.”
“Ahhh, gotcha.” Wade responded with a wink.
“So, where and when do we save the world? Same time, same place?” Kim inquired, arching an eyebrow in anticipation.
“I’ll send you the coordinates right now, and if you could somehow destroy the machine sometime tonight, I think we, as in the world, would appreciate it.” Wade remarked, typing in the destination longitudes and latitudes in his computer, and exporting them to Kim’ s Kimmunicator.
After a few moments, he looked back at Kim. “Got it?”
“All set.” Kim nodded, looking over the map and committing it to memory.
“Awesome. Then go get ‘em Kim. And good luck.” Wade gave Kim the thumbs up.
“So done.” Kim smirked back. “But gotta go Wade. One more class left.” She tapped her watch as she clicked her Kimmunicator off and sprinted towards class, trying to ignore the flash of pain in her side, a very physical reminder of her last encounter with Drakken and Shego.
June 12, 2005 – The Present
With a resounding thud that echoed throughout the dimly-lit lair, Drakken bit back a curse that was threatening to spill out through his dark blue lips.
“Awww…” DNAmy cooed. “What happened to my little Drakkie-poo?” DNAmy questioned, a bit too sweetly, from a bench nearby, trying to cuddle a screeching and scratching monkey, who obviously didn’t want anything to do with Amy or her incessant cuddling. From across the room, picking dirt from his toenails, Monkey Fist exchanged a sympathetic glance with his monkey ninja, shuddering at the image of Amy trying to cuddle him.
“I’m NOT YOUR DRAKKIE-POO! And why is this speaker so heavy?” Drakken whined, bending down gingerly to rub his left foot, still throbbing and smarting from the mishap a few seconds earlier.
“Be careful with that!” Senor Senior Junior mumbled angrily, rapidly approaching Drakken. “That’s expensive equipment you’re throwing around, and I don’t want to have to buy it all over again because YOU dropped it! I could never become a world famous pop star if you break my speakers!”
With a disdainful glance at Drakken, Senor Senior Junior leaned down on one knee to inspect the damage. He glowered at the blue-skinned mad scientist and shook his fist, before pointing to a series of black and grey click knobs and buttons that, for the record, looked perfectly fine.
“You idiot, you messed up my volume adjustments! It took me, like, several hours to get the bass balance right. It was conflicting with my vocal –“
“Aww, shut it.” Drakken shot back. “Just help me get these bulky…whatever it is you call these large things…into the van.”
Junior opened his mouth to protest, but quickly shut it.
“Never mind.” He sighed under his breath, gritting his teeth together almost painfully.
“And where is Shego?” Drakken sighed. “We need her. The final plans are finally taking shape, and she needs to know what she’s supposed to do. I don’t want to screw this up this time.”
“She’s probably milling about in her room, perfecting her revenge!” Monkey Fist grinning. “You know how detail-oriented Shego can be.”
“Oooooooh, I hope she plans on using that pretty plasma fire of hers!” Amy squealed. “I just love it when she throws it around! I hope Shego burns that cheerleader to a crisp!”
“Aye, I want to see Shego overpower that annoying lass and slowly break every bone in her body.” Killigan grunted, idly tossing a golf ball in the air.
“I can just see Shego placing Possible in an easily escapable and exotic death, obviously involving electric eels of course, and sulfuric acid vats, and handheld laser guns, and poison darts, and long sharp needles with tranquilizers, and…”
Senor Senior Senior paused in his mini-speech, his mouth still open as the rest of the villains gaped at him. He spread his hands and shrugged his shoulders.
June 4, 2005 – The Past
“Why are we huddled out here in the desert, in the middle of nowhere again?” Ron whispered, wiping the sweat off his forehead.
“Hot.” Rufus chirped, mimicking the motion with one of his paws.
“Because we’re trying to dismantle Drakken’s newest invention, remember. Save the world and all?” Kim reminded her sidekick, barely suppressing a grin.
“Ahhhh, right. But why, why, WHY in the middle of nowhere? I mean, couldn’t Drakken have staged his newest world domination gig somewhere a bit closer to civilization?” Ron complained. “You know, somewhere where there’s a readily available supply of water and soda and nacos? That way, at least we can snack while we’re waiting.”
Shrugging her shoulders, Kim replied, “Ask him I guess?”
Ron frowned. “He doesn’t even know my name, KP.”
“Remind him then.”
“You really aren’t being all that helpful, you know.”
“How about a name tag? You know, one of those sticky ones? It can say, ‘Hi, my name is Ron Stoppable.’” Kim smirked.
“No.” Rufus shook his head. “Wouldn’t work.”
“Sorry. I was being silly. But you can – look!” Kim grabbed Ron’s head and turned him towards the middle of the ravine, where a familiar blue-skinned scientist and plasma-throwing woman had gathered next to a rather complex-looking machine.
While Drakken seemed lost in thought, muttering to himself, pushing several buttons and clasping his hands together unconsciously, Shego looked as alert as ever. Her dark green eyes scanned the canyon, and her face had taken on its usual predatory expression. As she turned towards the general area where Kim and Ron were hiding, she paused a few seconds longer and narrowed her eyes, and Kim could have sworn she caught the faintest of smiles trace Shego’s lips. Within moments; however, she had turned around again, looking somewhere else. Cautiously, Kim peeked out from the boulder she had taken refuge behind, attempting to catch a better glimpse at Shego.
There! Kim thought in triumph, finally spotting her nemesis.
Pausing abruptly in her surveillance of the area, Shego quickly spun around to face Kim’s direction. Almost anticipating this moment, Kim leaned back and pressed herself against the edge of the boulder, trying to lose herself in the shadows while keeping Shego in her line of sight.
Inclining her head slightly and almost giving a nod of acknowledgement, Shego kept her gaze oriented in Kim’s direction, her eyes narrowed in suspicion. Keeping silent, Kim stared back at Shego, stilling her breathing as quiet as she could manage. Suddenly, Shego’s calm expression broke out into a full grin, and she inclined her head again, letting her eyelids droop slightly.
With a sly smile, and a challenge present in her eyes, Shego whispered two words to the wind. They were almost inaudible, but enunciated so clearly that even Kim could read Shego’s lips.
And with those two words, Shego turned around so that her back was towards Kim, her motions careful and deliberate…and perhaps even playful and inviting.
Kim felt her face contort in confusion and slight amusement. What was Shego’s intent, what was her game, what was she playing at? Kim tried to catch a glance at her rival’s facial expression, but Shego continued to stand there, her back deliberately turned towards Kim. Kim felt herself grin in response.
You want to play? Fine by me.
Crouching down and tensing her muscles, Kim prepared to launch herself towards Shego. First, she would land a right punch in Shego’s midsection to knock the air out of her, and then tackle her to the ground to subdue her, pinning her plasma hands above her head. Reaching into her hip pack, Kim checked her supplies, making sure she had brought sturdy rope. Her grappling gun was gone – Wade was in the process of repairing it. On a previous mission, the firing function had failed, but she shouldn’t need it on this mission, so it wouldn’t be a problem if she didn’t have it. This mission was a simple destroy the doomsday device and save the world gig.
Feeling the adrenaline coursing through her body in the anticipation of a fight, Kim grinned, rotating her shoulders to ease herself into a better stance.
Okay in 5…4…3…2…1! GO!
June 12, 2005 – The Present
“Hey KP.” Ron practically chirped, holding up two nacos, Rufus cheerfully offering a third. “I picked us up some lunch.”
“Aww, thanks Ron.” Kim smiled, reaching out to take the naco closest to her reach.
“You DO remember nacos, right Kimbo?” Ron asked, a momentarily serious glimmer in his eye.
“Of course I do Ron. They. They.” Kim’s face twisted into an almost-grimace. “They’re…like…”
Unwrapping her naco with caution and care, Kim tenderly held the hybrid food in front of her quizzical face. She narrowed her eyes and wrinkled her nose before volunteering a guess at the mystery food.
“I think it’s…”
“KP!” Ron interrupted, grabbing his head with his hands in a gesture of horror. “You’ve forgotten what a naco is!”
Rufus mimicked the motion with his two front paws, squeaking a small “Oh no!”
A wicked idea forming in her mind, Kim mentally grinned. Making of show of gingerly taking a bite of her naco and chewing experimentally, Kim swallowed her food before a look of terror and panic overwhelmed her face. She stood up and grabbed her throat, forcing a choking sound and pretending to gag.
Ron rushed over to help, but suddenly, Kim burst into a wide grin. “Just kidding you guys! I may not remember exact details, but a naco is legendary. I could never forget that!”
Still in his frozen tableau ofhorror, hands still on his head, Ron blinked once. Twice. Rufus promptly followed.
With a small chuckle, Kim broke into an all-out laugh and took a large bite of the naco. She winked. “Got any extra Diablo sauce?”
June 4, 2005 – The Past
With a burst of built-up energy, Kim threw herself from behind her cover, Ron and Rufus following after her. She had approximately twenty feet to cover before she would reach Shego, but her speed was more than enough to make up for the distance.
As she drew nearer to Shego, Kim was surprised to see that Shego hadn’t already turned around to block her attack. Was the thief suddenly deaf? Mentally shaking off the question, Kim returned her attention and focus on her advance – there was no time to dwell on this interesting scenario now – she had a villain to apprehend.
But, as Shego quickly pivoted on her heel to face Kim at the last second to deflect the punch Kim had aimed at Shego’s stomach and throw Kim on the rough terrain, Kim realized that Shego had a similar goal – she had a hero to defeat.
Kim wasted no time in rolling out from under Shego’s grasp, quickly glancing around to see where Ron and Rufus were. As expected, the duo had confronted Drakken, and from her cursory glance, it looked like Rufus was trying to bite Drakken’s ear, causing the mad scientist to hop around in a circle, clawing at his head.
Satisfied that her lifelong friend would be able to handle himself, Kim redirected her attention towards Drakken’s green-skinned sidekick.
“Shego!” She hissed, narrowing her eyes towards the older woman.
“I don’t even get a ‘hi” first, Princess?” Shego laughed. “I think I’m insulted.”
Shrugging her shoulders in an attempt to feign disdain, Kim arched an eyebrow. “Then consider yourself insulted.”
Her grin growing wider, Shego chuckled in response. “I’m not insulted THAT easily Pumpkin. You’ll have to do better than that.”
“Don’t worry, I will.” Kim promised.
With a quick snap of her wrists, curling her fingers into claws, Shego ignited her plasma flames. “Show me, Kimmie.”
Lunging forward with her right leg, Shego threw a punch at Kim’s head, but with practiced ease and economy of motion, Kim ducked and compensated with a roundhouse kick to Shego’s calf. Too busy with attempting to grab Kim’s wrists, Shego felt the kick land and gritted her teeth as she accepted the blow. Normally, kicks and punches were mere pinpricks to her nerve receptors, but Kim’s attacks were forceful and they actually hurt. It was painful, but a nice kind of pain.
‘My god, I’m turning into a masochist!’ Shego thought to herself, almost grinning through the pain.
Staggering back and catching her balance, Shego smiled, almost wistfully. “You’re learning. Very good.”
“Like you care.” Kim breathed heavily. Her exterior was cool and controlled, but inside, she was a mixture of emotions. Somehow…somehow she liked the taunting, the backhanded compliments. What was wrong with her?
Shego smiled, a predatory gleam shining through her eyes. “You have no idea.”
Running at Shego, Kim jumped up at the last minute to flip over the older woman, kicking out her leg to catch Shego in the back. Shego; however, wasn’t about to fall for this ruse, and rolled forward to avoid the kick. Missing her target, Kim only ducked more into her tuck and landed on her feet a few seconds later, spinning around to face Shego.
As Kim looked back at nemesis, realigning her position to a better fighting pose, Shego studied the redhead’s eyes, searching for something…
And there it was. Among several other expected emotions, Shego found the one she was looking for.
Kim liked fighting. Or, at least, she liked fighting with Shego. With Shego – only with Shego. It was an observation Shego couldn’t ignore, and if she had anything to do with it, neither would Kim. Shego smiled knowingly, causing Kim to take an involuntary step back.
“What?” Kim demanded.
“Oh, nothing.” Shego purred, her voice husky.
“Whatever.” Kim shrugged, crouching down to swing her leg out and hitting Shego in the ankle. But Shego only grinned calmly, giving no indication she even felt the impact.
The two women stared at each other, both breathing heavily, occasionally shifting their weights between each leg. Almost unconsciously, Kim reached to her left side and gently rubbed it, testing her pain tolerance there. The faintest of grimaces flashed across her face for an instant, and if Shego hadn’t been looking carefully, she probably wouldn’t have even noticed it.
But she did.
The memory shot through her, uninvited and unwanted. That half second where Kim had been distracted by that blonde sidekick of hers, that single moment…little did Shego realize what a defining moment it truly was. Kim’s voice jolted Shego out of her focus.
“Well, would love to stay and fight, but I have a world to save.”
Winking at Shego, Kim wasted little time in running and flipping past Shego, landing a heel in the back of her head, and sprinting as fast as she could towards Drakken and Ron.
For just a second, Shego fought against unconsciousness before mentally forcing herself to stay with it. Even though it was just a second, her internal struggle cost her time, and at once Shego was growling in defeat. She stood and stared at the running redhead in disbelief.
“Why, that little bit…” Shego started.
A sudden slow smile curled on her lips. Kim was injured, knew it too… but still she could do something like that. And THAT, Shego could privately admit, was the reason she had growing admiration for the redhead.
“Well done, Pumpkin… well done.”
Nearing the two, Kim could see that Drakken and Ron were both fighting over what appeared to be a lever of some sort. Drakken had both hands grasped around the handle, and was trying to pull it towards him. Ron had grabbed the lower half and with his feet braced on a nearby rock, was trying to simultaneously pulling it towards himself, and away from Drakken.
Easily, Kim flipped over Ron to land squarely next to Drakken, elbowing him in the stomach and effectively forcing him to let go of the lever. He staggered back, and Kim followed up with a front kick to his chin. Toppling over from the series of impacts, Drakken crawled backwards, away from Kim, and frowned.
“Don’t touch that!” He yelled, gritting his teeth.
“What? This?” Ron mocked, punching the side of the machine, a loud clang ringing out through the ravine. A half smile lacing her face, Kim walked over towards Ron to inspect the machine, looking it over with a sharp eye.
“Okay, what have we here, and how do we destroy it?” She remarked, hesitantly hovering her right hand above what appeared to be the control panel.
“What did Wade say about it?” Ron asked, with Rufus perched on his shoulder.
“He said just to destroy it outright – there shouldn’t be any weird effects.” Kim answered.
“Okay, so push all the buttons, pull out the wires, kick it, punch it, throw it, pour water on it, set fire to it, or hit the off button?” Ron rambled, counting on his fingers.
“Basically, yeah.” Kim grinned. “Rufus, you want to start with the wires?”
Giving a mock military salute, the small mole rat jumped off Ron’s left shoulder and onto the machine, opening a side panel and hopping inside. In a few seconds, sparks began to fly from the control panel as Rufus jumped out holding a pawful of multicolored wires.
“Here!” He chirped, handing the wires to Ron.
“Shego!” Drakken’s terse voice rang out through the valley. “Backup please NOW!”
“Speaking of which, where is she?” Ron whispered to Kim, eying the valley.
“Don’t worry, I knocked her out.” Kim assured him.
“Uhh, are you sure about it?” Ron asked nervously, gesturing towards a very irate Drakken. Following his gaze, Kim saw a very conscious Shego, her hands ablaze with her signature green plasma flames.
“Um, no. No, I’m not.” Kim corrected, involuntarily flinching and taking a few steps backwards as another series of flashes and sparks came flying from the machine. Within a few minutes, the small LCD screen went blank and a small internal explosion blew the device apart. Grabbing Ron and Rufus, Kim ducked behind the nearest rock formation to dodge the flying bits of metal and plastic.
“Whew! Thanks KP!” Ron breathed, slightly shaken.
“Don’t worry about it.” Kim smiled at him, jumping to her feet again. “But let’s go get Drakken and Shego. They’re not off the hook yet.”
As the crime-fighting trio ran back out into the clearing, a dark green and black hovercraft quickly began ascending from the smoke still settling from the previous explosion. Reaching to her utility belt and hip pack, Kim silently cursed as she remembered that Wade had taken her grappling gun to make some repairs, adjustments, and upgrades. Wasting no time, she leaned over to grab Ron’s gun, and pointing the hook to the underside of the aircraft, she aimed and fired. Unfortunately, her aim was half blind as the smoke and dust in the air still hadn’t totally cleared, and the resounding silence told her that she had failed to make contact.
Leaning over from the side of the hovercraft, Drakken paused the craft’s ascent and looked down over the cheerleader and buffoon. He laughed, and Shego joined him.
“You think you’re all that Kim Possible!” Drakken shouted, pointing a finger down at the redheaded heroine.
“But I’m not?” Kim finished for him, amusement in her eyes. “Yeah, you keep telling yourself that, Dr D.”
Shego quietly stifled a laugh at Kim’s use of her pet name for her employer, causing the blue man to glare at her for a second before turning back to the slowly shrinking redhead. He raised a finger and opened his mouth… and realized he couldn’t think of a comeback.
His finger dropping in disappointment and surprise, Drakken’s jaw followed shortly. Clenching his jaw and working his hands into fists, Drakken disappeared behind the controls. Moments later, the hovercraft began rising again.
“Consider this a goodbye present, Kim Possible!” Drakken shouted from the air, still operating the controls.
Almost instantaneously, two missiles shot out from beneath the hovercraft, headed straight towards Kim and Ron. Guided by her highly disciplined reflexes, Kim threw her weight to the side and quickly rolled out of the missiles’ trajectories. Hitting the ground harmlessly, the missiles exploded, sending bits of rock and dust everywhere. Kim shielded her eyes and face with her arm, looking skyward when the dust had cleared some. The hovercraft had just risen out of jumping and flipping range now – if she wanted to catch Drakken and Shego, she would need more height.
Shego’s smug and infuriating voice called from above. “Till next time, Princess!”
Glaring back at the thief, Kim had made up her mind.
“Come on Ron, we’re going after them.”
After a moment’s silence, and Kim looked to her left. “Ron? Where are you?”
Several coughs sounded a few feet behind her, and Kim turned around and ran towards the noise.
Coming upon a prone figure on the dusty ground, Kim knew it was her sidekick. Kneeling beside him, she began to inspect him for any visible wounds, gently turning his head from side to side, tapping his patellar reflex, and occasionally pinching his skin to see if he felt it. From her cursory glance, he looked stunned and bruised, but by and large alright.
“Ron, what happened?”
“I was knocked over by the blast I guess. I…I couldn’t move fast enough. I’m sorry.”
“How many fingers am I holding up?”
“Kim, you have to go get Drakken and Shego before they escape.”
“Answer the finger question!” She barked.
“Okay, you can see and count. But I’m not taking any chances. Can you walk? Does it hurt to stand? I’m getting you to the nearest hospital.” Gently grabbing Ron by the wrist, she tried to get him to stand, but with a dismissive wave, he shooed her away.
“I’m fine Kim. Get Drakken!”
“No Ron, I’m going to take care of you!”
“I’m fine, I swear.”
“I’m telling you Ron, we need to get X-rays and really take the time to inspect you for injuries. You could have a small fracture, or even have broken something. Did you hit your head? You could have a concussion.”
Reaching up to firmly take Kim by her right wrist, Ron pulled Kim down to his level to look into her eyes. Speaking carefully and slowly, he made a point to enunciate each word to convey his seriousness.
“Kim. You need to get Drakken. We can’t take any more chances this time, especially when Drakken was so close to winning last time with the Lil Diablo plot. Come back for me later when you’ve caught him, but you need to get him first. I’m fine. Please go. I have Rufus.”
As if on command, Rufus peeked his head out from Ron’s pocket. “We’ll be safe.” He chattered, indicating himself and Ron.
Still breathing heavily, Kim nodded wordlessly. Giving Ron’s hand a small and affectionate squeeze, Kim unfastened her utility belt and dropped it by his side.
“There are extra antiseptic wipes in the inside pockets by the belt clip. There are also three small vials of drinking water fortified with vitamins and minerals, and other good stuff. You can ask Wade about it. If you can, use the wipes to clean any scrapes and drink some water. It’s not a lot, but it will help get the dust out of your throat. I’ll return after I deal with Drakken, okay? For if for some reason I don’t…” Kim trailed off.
She reached into her pocket and withdrew her Kimmunicator. She handed it to Ron, making him take it.
“But if I don’t come back in a few hours, call Wade with this. He’ll be able to track you and get help.”
“You will come back though KP. Promise me that.” Ron demanded.
“Of course I will; I’m just saying I don’t know how long it will take, and I don’t like the idea of you here with any injuries alone.”
“I’m fine KP. But you be careful though. I want to see you tonight, at the very latest.”
Rufus nodded firmly in agreement.
“I think I can handle it.” Kim smiled, trying to reassure them both.
“Okay. Go get them.”
With a wink and another smile, Kim sprinted off on foot, leaving Ron and Rufus behind.
“What do you mean, the engine failed?” Drakken grumbled, sitting on top of a random boulder.
Almost having reached the top of the canyon, the hovercraft had begun sputtering and stalling, grey-black smoke spouting from the engine. It took all of Shego’s effort to guide the machine to the nearest rocky outcropping, and they had barely made it.
“These machines aren’t meant for the desert, Dr. D. The engine must have been clogged with sand. Some genius you are.” Shego shot back.
“I don’t need a lecture Shego, I just need to know if you can fix it.”
“I don’t know Dr. D. I have to take a look first.”
“Well, hurry up before Kim Possible catches up with us.” Drakken whined nervously, looking out over the horizon, looking for a familiar flash of red hair.
As Shego popped the cover to the engine,Drakken grabbed the spare tool kit in case the damage was easily repairable with the basic tools they kept on board the ship. Waving her gloved hands back and forth to clear the dark smoke from the interior, Shego clicked on the flashlight and peered inside, suppressing the urge to cough.
“Well, Shego?” Drakken inquired, impatience evident in his voice.
“Give me a minute already!”
“But Kim Possible might – “
“A minute!” Shego roared, effectively shutting Drakken up.
Pacing back and forth on the edge of the canyon, Drakken paused between every few steps, occasionally kicking a loose pebble down the incline, and occasionally scanning and rescanning the horizon for Kim. A series of continuous clinks and clangs (and curse words) from Shego’s direction weren’t sounding too reassuring, and Drakken was beginning to worry even more. Breaking out of jail after the Diablo incident had been relatively simple as Global Justice had underestimated the exact capabilities of Shego’s plasma fire, and the metal prison walls and enclosures could not ultimately withstand the intense heat that Shego’s plasma was able to generate. Though the Diablo Plan had been foiled by that loathsome teenage cheerleader, it had been his best plan to date, and had almost succeeded. His confidence restored, he had turned his attention forward to time travel. He would build the machine himself, program it himself, and be absolutely sure that there were no glitches. Then the world would be his again.
A quick movement out of the corner of his eye snapped his attention back to the present. Was that a flash of auburn he saw?
“Shego?” He asked, warily eyeing the horizon.
“What?” She snapped, throwing a wrench on the ground.
“Ready to go yet?” Worried, Drakken held a hand to his forehead to shield from the sun and stared carefully at the location where he was sure he saw that auburn flash.
“Just about. I removed the fan to clean out the sand particles as best I could. There’s still quite a bit stuck in the air filtration system, but we can still make it to the headquarters before it totally fails. I just need to replace the ventilation grid. Why? You have dinner plans or something?”
“Then why?” She asked, screwing in the second bolt.
“Because…well. That!” Drakken shouted, hopping back into the hovercraft and wildly gesturing to his left. Following his gaze, Shego saw the familiar form of her archnemesis perched on the largest boulder, her legs hunched under her, muscles tensed for immediate action. A smile tugged at Shego’s dark lips, and, firmly securing the last screw in place, Shego rose slowly to meet Kim’s gaze.
“Still think I’m not all that?” Kim grinned, mocking Drakken, who seemed to be turning a deeper shade of blue.
“Well, you’ve followed us this far, but you still won’t win, Kim Possible!” Drakken practically cackled as Shego rolled her eyes in disgust.
Kim looked less than impressed. Slowly, she arched an eyebrow. “Uh huh.” She quipped, sounding almost bored.
Clenching his jaw, Drakken narrowed his eyes, frustration apparent on his features.
“So, are we gonna fight or what?” Shego asked lazily, holding up a gloved hand and igniting her plasma fire, the green flames springing up with a muffled whomph.
“No Shego!” Drakken held up a hand. “No need to occupy ourselves with such trivial fistfights. Soon, we shall rule the world!”
Without another word, Drakken turned around and quickly hopped into the hovercraft. Taking one last look at Kim, Shego blew a mock goodbye kiss and backflipped into the pilot seat next to her blue employer. With the push of a few buttons, and adjustment of a couple levers, the hovercraft began to rise up and over the canyon ravine.
Using the boulder she was perching on as springboard, Kim launched herself towards the rapidly ascending vehicle, running as fast as her calves could propel her. She was quickly approaching the edge of the rocky outcropping, and a few more steps would put her in midair.
Give up already! Shego silently yelled at her nemesis, her patience waning with each passing second.
But the firm mask of determination on Kim’s face and the way she continued her sprint forward without any signs of a decreased momentum told Shego everything she needed to know.
Kim was going to try and jump.
But the hovercraft was already practically out of reach, even for such an accomplished athlete like Kim.
Is she crazy! Shego thought, the realization hitting her that Kim really was going to attempt to jump. A glance at the redhead told Shego that Kim hadn’t brought along rope, her grappling gun, or any other device that could theoretically help her get a grip on the hovercraft. It was possible that such gadgets were well hidden on Kim’s person, but in the past, Kim had made no effort to disguise the basic gizmos that got her from point A to point B.
Still, Kim attempting a leap like that was a risk Shego didn’t particularly feel like taking, and she returned her attention to the control panel. Perhaps if she guided the hovercraft to a height so extreme that even Kim, the girl who could do anything, would rethink her actions, then she could solve the problem. Almost violently, Shego increased the acceleration and guided the vehicle further away from the canyon’s ledge, effectively further away from Kim. Upon placing several more feet between the aircraft and the cheerleader, Shego looked back, but her smug smile quickly evaporated.
Kim hadn’t stopped; she hadn’t even slowed down.
In Shego’s mind, time painfully skidded to a halt, and every motion seemed to unfold in slow motion, frame by frame, millisecond by millisecond. Though her brain was screaming frantically for her to act, she found herself frozen in place, unable to even blink.
Upon reaching the end of the rocky ledge, Kim crouched down on her hunches, pausing only a fraction of a second before springing up and out, towards the hovercraft. Reflexively, she pointed her toes and extended her arms, making her body more aerodynamic and getting the most amount of reach possible as she sailed towards the hovercraft.
Some part of Shego’s brain watched, horrified and fascinated. Another part begged to move the hovercraft closer, and put it in reach of Kim. But then what would she say to Drakken, still standing right next to her, watching the same spectacle she was? How would she explain her actions? An engine malfunction, due to the grainy sand particles still embedded within the machine?
Yes, of course. A technical abnormality.
Her gloved hand drifted back to the control panel, but a sudden motion and a suppressed gasp to her left had her head twisting violently back to where Kim was still reaching for the vehicle.
A grimace of pain twisted on her face, and still in the middle of her jump, Kim moved her left hand to her left side, clutching it and panting. Her focus and attention interrupted, she curled her body into a loose ball, her hand still grabbing her left side, and her aerodynamic posture lost.
“What the…” Shego angrily muttered aloud, wondering what was causing Kim so much pain that she would tuck in during a jump like that – especially when she needed to be stretched and extended to even consider a hope that she would reach the hovercraft without a grappling gun. It was almost as if someone had shoved a spear through Kim’s upper abdomen…
A past but still relatively recent memory flooded Shego’s senses. She was in Club Banana, three days previous.
“KP, I got him!” The blonde boy yelled. Looking at Kim, Shego saw her determination and focus waver, and even though the redhead was in the perfect physical position to dodge the impending plasma fire, her mental state was suddenly unprepared.
As the plasma fire drew nearer and nearer, the redhead remained motionless and still. Her mouth was slightly open, almost as if she were screaming, and a bit of terror began steadily building in her eyes. The only moving objects were the plasma fireballs, and now, Kim’s blonde sidekick and his repulsive rodent. Running up to a still frozen Kim, he reached up to grasp her wrist and quickly pulled her down on the ground with him. The plasma exploded into the wall behind them – a narrow miss.
No, not a narrow miss.
As Shego looked closer, her heart still caught somewhere in her throat, she saw a reddened and inflamed line of skin on Kim’s left side. And not only inflamed, but bleeding and exposed, prone to infection. She would need a couple of stitches at least before the day was over.
A narrow hit.
Shego blinked, and found herself back in the rapidly unfolding and unfortunate present. Still clutching her side and wincing, Kim had already reached the apex of her jump, approximately three feet below the hovercraft, and was just beginning her involuntary descent, gravity pulling her down. Without thinking, Shego jumped over the side of the hovercraft, grabbing the edge with one of her clawed hands and extending the other as far down as she could manage without falling overboard herself. She desperately grasped for Kim’s arm, or her leg, or her clothes – hell, she would even grab her hair if she had to.
But Kim was too far gone, her tumbling body out of Shego’s reach.
KIIIIIIIMMMMMMMM! Shego screamed silently to herself as she hung suspended from below the hovering vehicle, still swinging slightly.
As she watched Kim’s spinning and twisting body falling down the ravine, a dark feeling of helplessness began to overcome her, followed immediately by a slow-burning irate fury – but not at Kim. Shego couldn’t tell exactly who she was angry at; she only knew she was infuriated. Unconsciously, she gripped the metal hovercraft edge harder, her knuckles cracking under the extra pressure.
But the disturbing scenario wasn’t going away. In fact, it was getting worse.
The shock and sudden pain finally wearing off, Kim seemed to regain her awareness of her situation. She stretched out from her involuntary tuck position, and obviously ignoring stabs of pain in her side, Kim frantically looked around for anything she could grab hold of – anything to stop her fall outright or at least slow it down. Automatically reaching to her utility belt, Kim’s eyes widened in terror as she realized that she had already used her rope to repel down the canyon the first time, and that her hairdryer was in the process of being repaired. The world was passing by her in a total blur of tan and brown tones, and above her, the idyllic sky was a stark contrast to the dark profile of a certain green and black thief. Kim closed her eyes and opened her mouth to scream as she neared the rough bottom terrain below her.
At the top of the canyon, Shego squinted as Kim’s form became smaller and smaller below, disappearing into the shadowed rift. The thief felt her heart constrict painfully in her chest, and her lip quivered as tears threatened to spill from her green eyes. Her breathing slowed, and she felt an invisible pressure preventing her chest from expanding.
A panicked scream sounded from below, followed shortly by an unusually loud thumping and cracking sound, and ultimately, a very disturbing silence.
Shego felt her blood freeze, the hairs on the back of her neck standing on end as she heard the crack resounding through the canyon. And the silence…the silence was so loud she wanted to slap her hands over hears to drown out the world.
Hoisting herself back on board the hovercraft, Shego slammed a mask of indifference on her face and opened one of the side storage compartments to grab the medical supply bag, personally stocked by her and kept there for emergencies. As she guided the hovercraft closer to the nearest rock ledge, hopping off the vehicle and onto the dusty ground, Drakken stared at her in disbelief.
“Shego! What are you doing? Do you realize what we’ve just done? We’ve killed Kim Possible!”
“Yeah, yeah, I hear ya.”
“So, get back in here and let’s get back to the lab.”
“You go on Dr. D. I’m going to have a look myself and make sure Kimmie really did fall to her death. I’m not totally convinced. You know how that teenager has a knack for escaping stuff like this.”
“Ahh, I see. Good thinking Shego.”
“Right. Now, you get back to the lab before too many GJ agents swarm the place, and I’ll contact you later.”
With a nod, Drakken moved to the controls and within a few minutes, the hovercraft was just a small black dot on the horizon.
Skillfully navigating down the rocks, Shego searched for her redhead nemesis, hoping and praying she had somehow survived. It seemed impossible, but this was the legendary Kim Possible.
The sun was just beginning to set, and the sky was turning a deep hue of a beautiful crimson red.
And somewhere down below, stuck at the bottom of that great rift, a teenage cheerleader with fiery red hair was clinging to life, and waiting for her rescuer, a woman who had once sworn to kill her.
Life, it seemed, enjoyed a good practical joke.
June 12, 2005 – The Present
Narrowing his eyes in concentration, Drakken rechecked his calibrations. This volume had to be exactly right – even being off by 0.1 microliter would bring upon severe consequences. But right as he was about to draw up his buffer solution, a pounding resounded through the lab.
“Not now, I’m working!” Drakken shouted to whomever was insistently clanging at the door.
“Dr. D, let me in!” The pounding increased in volume and frequency, indicating desperation.
“I told you, I’m working!”
“Let me in! I’m warning you!”
“IF YOU DON’T LET ME IN RIGHT NOW…”
With his microliter pipette hovering above a rack of six 2-milliliter plastic test tube, Drakken paused and narrowed his eyes. That low angry voice was…
“RIGHT! I WARNED YOU, DR D!”
“SHEGO!” Drakken hollered as the aluminum-reinforced door broke open with a blinding flash of green. “I TOLD YOU I WAS WORKING!”
“Yeah, yeah, I sorta got the point.” Shego yawned, examining her hands. She prayed that Drakken didn’t notice the shadows under her eyes, the way her skin was even paler than usual, and the sweat on her brow.
With a low growl, Drakken threw down his pipette and turned back to Shego. “You ruined my experiment! What do you want? This had better be good!”
“It’s about that solution thing you made.”
“Which one, Shego? I’m a very busy scientist here.”
“That…green one.” Unspoken, Shego continued the sentence in her mind. That…that threatening one….
Drakken narrowed his eyes. “What green one I make many green solutions, Shego. You need to be more specific.”
“The…the glowing green one.”
“WHICH glowing green one?”
“The one in the…the…the small glass vial.”
The one that will kill my Princess…the one that will make Kim forget everything…including me.
After an awkwardly silent pause, Drakken sighed. “What’s this really about Shego? You NEVER care for my experiments.”
“Well…” Shego coughed out, desperately trying to mask her worry and frustration, which was growing more and more insistent and ready to boil over in a single explosive moment.
“Shegoooooooo…” Drakken drawled, tapping his foot.
“Alright, alright, fine!” Shego snapped. “I just…I just…” She bit her lip.
“What!” Exasperation laced Drakken’s voice now.
“I don’t think this is a good idea!” Shego finally roared, clenching her fists and letting her plasma fire flare up. “I mean, she’s surrounded by GJ agents, her friends, her family, and that nerdlinger probably has her protected with all kinds of…of…I don’t know, anything! Everything! And on top of that, she’s just gotten out of the hospital! It’s not fair; it wouldn’t be a fair fight!”
Almost withdrawing into herself, Shego found herself whispering the same sentence over again. “It wouldn’t be fair…to either of us.”
“Shego! What’s gotten into you all of a sudden? When did you start caring about something being fair?” Drakken questioned, a wild thought forming in his mind.
“Argh! Nothing! Nothing! Don’t worry about it!” Shego growled, almost half mumbling. “Forget I even said anything.”
And with an angry flourish, Shego turned away and stormed out of the room, plasma-punching the door as she exited. Behind her, Drakken stood in the dim light, his jaw slightly hanging open in surprise. His suspicion was becoming more and more justified with each passing day, and a realization finally hit him, and hit him hard. Turning back to his workdesk, he pulled out a small vial of fluorescent green liquid.
There were some modifications to be done…
To be continued…
Again, thank you to everyone who has been reading and giving support and advice. Hang in there, we’re almost done!