Fan Fiction

Leela's Affair
By Sofie Fenwick

This fan fiction isn't your typical Leela/Fry romance story, it's rather my interpretation about what would happen if Leela did finally marry Fry, and what the consequences could be. I don't hold the viewpoint that Leela is a "bitch" for turning down Fry's advances, for I believe that she has every right to be "choosy".

Special thanks to Graham (some of you know him as Gort), my partner, who gave me a few ideas and additional help, as well as Jim Malonee (some will know him as JTWeasel), who also went through the story and gave ideas, as well as removing some Britishisms from the dialogue.

Chapter 1 - Birthday Present

Leela sat there, in the casino, drinking yet another glass of whiskey, to add to the line of other empty glasses sitting there in front of her at the bar. She had long passed tipsy, and was now quite drunk, feeling as if her head was spinning round and round... like a baseball being whacked hard, the moment it made contact with the bat of a great homer-scoring player.

She grabbed hold of her glass, and pushing her head back abruptly, hurled it down her throat. "I want another one... right now!" She screamed aggressively to the bartender.

"Don't you think you've had enough, Miss?"

"I'll tell you when I've had enough!"

She began to cry, as she sat there alone, lonely and very upset. Fry had promised to take her out tonight, for a quiet romantic dinner and a special birthday drink, though she should have known better than to think he'd changed... even for just one night, her thirty-third birthday!

When they were first married, five years ago, they built a small home together, used to have a fantastic sex-life, and, just over six months ago, they even had a little baby girl, Alison. She had two eyes, just like Fry, and a little dinky nose to go with them, in fact, the only way she could be recognized as Leela's child, was by the thick head of purple hair, covering her tiny pink head.

Hermes and LaBarbara had kindly offered to take care of Alison tonight, so that Fry could take Leela out to have the so-called great time.

But, Leela was totally depressed, as the sweet, emotional man she'd married had changed quite a lot over five years. For a start, nowadays, she didn't just have to play mother to Alison, but to the mindless brat, too. In fact, she was miserable most nights, for he'd ruined both the lives of Alison and herself completely. He'd spent their entire life savings - a good sum of money, which amounted to nearly fifty thousand dollars - and he was still spending! He'd flimsily just thrown his money away on excessive drinking, playing naughty games with other women, and entertaining himself by gambling his life away with Bender, on the various casino games on offer in New New York, and beyond.

She, miserably, spilled her woes out to the one and only sympathetic ear who seemed to be listening to her: the bartender. "You know, he used to be so wonderful, so caring. He had some sort of childlike quality that made me want to wrap him in my arms and cuddle up close to him, to willingly mother him wholeheartedly, and finally, always to take care of him... then that giant tin can had to interfere; to interrupt our entire, loving, relationship. The two of them began to feed off each other, trying to outdo one another. Of course, this became extravagant. Spend! Spend! Spend!" She gestured wildly, emphasizing that point, then continued to ramble on. "I suppose I was just a fool to believe that he would possibly grow out of it over time, I even had  doubts  when I married him. I suppose I knew he was attached to Bender even then, but they were never this close. I wonder sometimes if he has a clue of what I'm feeling or going through, or even has ever stopped, for just one moment, to spare a thought for me or Alison."

The bartender could see that she seemed to be in deep distress, so he gave her the most reassuring advice he could think of: "I'm sure he thinks about you all the time; he must have loved you, to have chosen you for his bride. Some men just have a lot of trouble expressing their love, that’s all."

Knowing Fry, Leela didn't believe a word of it. Even if it were true, he had a very thoughtless way of showing anything and everything. In fact, he used to get his buzz out of committing impulsive, immature activities.

While she sat there, drinking away her sorrows, she just happened to notice, out of the corner of her eye, another customer also drowning his problems with more than several alcoholic drinks; a handsome member of the male species. Sitting there, he looked like a celebrity head-in-a-jar she'd once seen, and thought his name was Humphrey Bogart. In fact, he didn't just look like this celebrity head, he also had the accent to match. "Can I buy ya a drink lady...? I'm celebrating my very first wedding anniversary... alone."

Leela remembered after her first anniversary, how she was still very much in love with Fry, how their love was still growing, even during the strains of life together. After sitting there for a while, wondering how a woman could fall out of love with someone she'd married only a year before, her question was soon answered.

"Ya see that big busted, blonde bimbo... the one that's perched herself next ta that redhead jerk at the roulette wheel, who's just about ta lose yet another thousand bucks on the lucky seven... well that bimbo is my woman."

As the two of them watched Fry losing yet another thousand dollars on the roulette wheel, for the first time all day, Leela could still manage a birthday smile. "You see that redhead jerk, who's perched right next to that big busted bimbo, the one that's just lost yet another thousand dollars on the lucky seven... well that jerk is my dimbo man." They both chuckled together, finding an immediate mutual, magnetic bond between them... also fuelled by their state of intoxication.

Even though they were both drunk, they just about managed to converse about varying subjects, finding that they had a lot in common in their lives, as well as their interests. They sat and talked, listening and laughing at the other's situations... finding that they seemed to be clicking, finding something common within.

As they took to each other so easily, this bond of affection increased, as they began to feel the need to nurse each other's broken heart. "Let me take ya somewhere else," he proposed. "Somewhere more quiet, just my little purple haired lady and me."

"What about your wife?" Leela enquired, feeling tempted by the proposal, although not able, herself, to forget her own other half of the equation.

He laughed, "Who, Carol? He-he-he that’s really funny lady, my woman hardly ever notices when I'm around... she's hardly gonna notice when I'm gone."

While Fry was gambling away all the money he should have spent on her birthday treat, the intoxicated cyclops began to let this strange attraction overcome her; she dropped all barriers against his sexual advances. Although she didn't set out with a burning desire that she would enjoy her birthday that night... she was about to embark on one of the most fulfilling journeys of her life.

Her birthday present began as soon as the two of them left the casino in the pouring rain. They linked arms and began to sing and dance merrily, blurting out noises resembling Singing in the Rain, while they hopped, skipped and jumped into the puddles down the street, just to make them go splishing and splashing.

Leela awoke in a plush hotel bedroom, facing a large window. Her hangover, from the night before's drinking binge, seemed to just keep on getting worse from the pelting rain punching against the window. She lay there naked, now sober, wondering how she got there; but she simply couldn't remember a thing about it. She was normally a very responsible person, and didn't understand how something like this could have happened to her.

She then heard somebody twisting and turning behind her. Terrified, Leela became almost paralysed, as she wondered who it could possibly be. "Could it be an alien, an elderly gentleman, or even another woman... ewww!" she worried to herself, fearing what her drunken state had led her to. She also began to think about whether this mystery date had given her a lustful, passionate, sex night, or just two minutes in the sheets. As she noticed that she was all hot and sweaty, and the weather outside seemed to be extremely cold and raining, she gathered that she must have had a steamy sex night.

"Oh f**k... what the f**k are ya doing in my bed, lady?" he screamed in shock, at seeing her for the first time in the bed with him.   

She sat up like lightning, pulling the sheets up over her naked body. She tried desperately to remember even just a hint of what might have happened, but her brain wasn't giving anything away.

She waited until he had calmed down from his shock, then she gave her excuse: "I don't know how on earth I got here, but I should've been enjoying my birthday treat with my husband... Fry." She shyly tried to avoid staring into his hypnotic brown eyes, and awaited his reaction.

"I'm married too, lady," he replied, in a very embarrassed tone. "I'm sorry I swore at ya earlier, it was just the shock of finding myself in bed with another woman. I'm really no Romeo, ya know, despite what we may, or may not, have done earlier. Besides, I should be celebrating my first anniversary with my wife... Carol."

"Well, I suppose I ought to at least be happy that you're shocked that I'm another woman, and not because I only have... one eye. Most people I meet for the first time are usually very shocked by it."

"But, why Miss? It's such a beautiful shade of greeny-blue. Why, it enhances the colour of your hair. Altogether, the entire effect is breathtaking!"

"Mmm... I bet you say that kind of thing to all the girls, so I'm gonna get back to our original conversation. Now, I have no recollection of our little affair, so as far as I'm concerned, it was a huge misunderstanding, and I'm very sorry if anything happened between us."

"Well, since I don't remember much about it either, I suggest it would be sensible if we both just forgot the entire situation, and went back to our spouses this morning," he suggested. 

"I think that's a good idea!" Leela agreed, as they both got dressed under the sheets, getting ready to go back to their normal lives.

Chapter 2 - Private Collection

As she walked home in the rain, she wondered what Fry would say to her when she got indoors. As she pushed the front door open, the only thing she could hear was the TV playing and the baby crying... but where was Fry? As she couldn't see him, she began to call out his name. "Fry? Oh, Fry?" She kept calling louder and louder, so she'd get a reply of some kind... but nothing. "Fry where are you... answer me?"

Not even the helpless Fry would collect a baby from its sitter, and just leave it at home alone. Then she heard a booming, tumultuous noise coming from the bathroom. CCRRAAASH!

She swiftly darted over to the bathroom, to see if Fry was OK, for if there ever was any sort of crash in the house, Fry usually had something to do with it. This time, not just  the entire bathroom ceiling had fallen over the top of Fry, but also the obese landlady from upstairs.

The moment the fat landlady had decided to take a bath, Fry had also decided to go to the toilet, or it could have been vice-versa. This meant that there was also an obese, bathing beauty who was awaiting Leela's help, as well as the lazy slob.

From underneath all the rubble and sawdust, the only thing Leela could hear, was a tiny squeaking voice, like a mouse, coming from under all the mess on the floor. "Leela, Leela help me," pleaded the little voice. "Get the fat mamma off me." And, as always, Leela was ready to help Fry, who forever needed rescuing.

Leela attempted to lift the heavy rubble, that used to belong to her late ceiling - or the landlady's late floor - and put most of it to one side of the room. After she had just about managed to pull them both out from underneath the mess, she gave the landlady a blanket to cover herself with, as she didn't have any clothing to fit her. The fat lady then went upstairs to her own apartment, and got the Frys an appointment with the builders for one month's time. She, herself, also needed a new bathroom fitted into her home, but as the plumbers couldn't supply her with a new bathroom, until it had a floor; she too had to await the arrival of the builders.

The fat landlady always complained that all workmen charged too much money, for too little work, moaning and groaning, usually because she was always the one that had to pay their bills. The date the builders had given her also seemed to mean that there would be rubble in the Frys' bathroom for another month. But, at least they should feel lucky that the toilet hadn't smashed to pieces, unlike the entire bathroom of the lady's upstairs. This seemed to mean that, for now, there was a gigantic hole in their ceiling, which also meant that the lives of the whole household would be disrupted for a month, until the builders could find it in their hearts to arrive and rebuild the entire place back up again.

A month had past since that calamity. The appointment with the builders seemed to have been arranged for the same day that both Leela and Fry were supposed to be on a three day sleep-in special delivery. This meant that one of them had to stay home for at least five days to keep an eye on the workmen, for that was how long the work would take. Leela had taken a week off her holiday entitlement to make sure that there was constantly somebody at the apartment, as Fry was extremely eager to get his hands on the controls, and captain the ship for two to three days.

Fry tried his best to assure Leela of the safety of the ship in his hands. ''Don't worry Leela, I can command the ship for a few days, and I promise I won't drink and drive." They gave each other a little goodbye kiss, and Fry was off like a shot.

As Fry had left at 9am, and the builders wouldn't be coming until 9.30am, it left her a little time to tidy up a couple of the rooms that the workmen might possibly pass through... except the bathroom, of course. She never really had much time to do that much housework nowadays, as most of her cleaning was limited, due to other chores that came her way: mostly scrubbing down the spaceship, and a handful of other time-consuming little duties.

After she completed any work that needed to be done in her home, she went over to her just awoken baby and began to sing Rock-a-Bye-Baby to Alison, in order to get her back to sleep. But, she was suddenly disturbed from doing that, by somebody knocking at the door. She knew who it was immediately... after all, the fat lady had made an appointment for 9.30am, and it wasn't even a couple of minutes gone that.

When Leela answered the door, she stood there, almost paralysed for several seconds; her jaw dropped wide open and her eye practically popped out, in temporary shock. Although there were two workmen standing there, who both wore dirty blue jeans, dirty white T-shirt, safety helmet, and a yellow tool-belt wrapped around their waists, one of them, seemingly the head workman, carrying a big metal toolbox in one hand and a stash of forms in the other, was Leela's secret fling!

"It's... you," the stunned mystery guy managed to spurt out, still completely mesmerized by seeing her again.

"It's... you... too," repeated Leela, in a very slow and similar tone.

As they stared at each other, the assistant workman took it upon himself  to intrude on their scene. "Do you two know each other by some strange chance?" he asked. "Because I'm me, my name's Chuck, and I'm here to do a job... not to watch two people gawking at each other.... Now, fallen ceiling, wasn't it?"  

"Umm... ahhh... yes, that's right," stammered Leela. "Right this way."

Only Chuck followed Leela through the hallway and into the bathroom, where the rubble lay. He took a long look at it, then shouted to his supervisor, still waiting at the door, "I think It'll take till noon to clear this mess away, if we start immediately. Then we can start rebuilding it, what do you think, Harry?"

Leela made her way back to the front door and enquired, "So that's your name Mr Mystery Fella... Harry?"

"That's right," he finally answered. "Now, all I have printed on my forms, are Mr P and Mrs T L Fry, apartment 1I. Now, are you going to tell me your first name, or shall I try to guess what the T and L stands for?"

"My name's Leela, Turanga Leela. Now, come on in if you're going to get any work done. Besides, I've still got a baby to get to sleep, and you're disturbing me." Harry apologized, for their interruption, then joined his workmate in the bathroom.

Later on during the day, if one of them wanted to use the bathroom, they each had to throw the other two out, and keep their fingers crossed that the landlady from upstairs wasn't watching through the ceiling. When it was finally Harry's time to use the bathroom again, just before lunchbreak, Leela and Chuck did their rightful duty of waiting outside.

It was just then, that the workmate took it upon himself to reveal his unsuspecting friend's big secret. "I thought I ought to tell you this, because you're the only purple haired lady, and cyclops, I've ever seen in my life.... I was on a double-date with Harry, and his voluptuous, blonde, bimbo wife, Carol, last week, together with a girlfriend of mine. We were sitting at a bar in a club, when Carol just happened to mention that about a month ago Harry had started to do a private collection of nude paintings and drawings of her. Well, she then added that with all these pictures, he'd asked her to wear a long purple wig, and had joined her eyes together to make a kind of cyclops We all just laughed it off; thought he had a secret love for mythology or something."

As Harry walked out of the bathroom, the caught-in-the-act look on Chuck's face was all it took to let his supervisor know that he had just been snitched on. He looked at Leela slightly embarrassed. "OK, how much exactly has he told you?" he asked, curiously.

"Your friend has been telling me all about your so-called... private collection," she smiled, craftily.

Noticing that they needed to be alone, Chuck decided to go to lunch by himself. "I think I'd better go," he announced, leaving them to sort their situation out by themselves.

Leela chuckled, as Harry went bright red with embarrassment. "You don't have to be afraid, I actually take it as a compliment."

"Really! I thought ya'd be angry, ya know how women get, nowadays."

Leela got slightly pissed off with that remark, raising her voice to indicate displeasure. "What do you mean, 'ya know how women get, nowadays'? Don't you know all women are different, therefore we all think differently?" She saw him looking a little apologetic with shame, therefore calmed herself down.

She still seemed to be very inquisitive about his previous actions. "Mind you, I would like to know why you made an art collection of naked ladies imitating me though, just out of curiosity? I mean, we both got dressed under the sheets, so you couldn't have seen much to paint, and even if we possibly did have a night of affection, we were both so drunk that neither of us were able to remember any of it anyway."

Harry rubbed the back of his head, feeling nervous about how to approach this. "That's just it, ya see... I wanted to remember ya exactly how I last saw ya... plus whatever I imagined ya might look like underneath the sheets. I s'pose the guessing part's the most exciting... huh?"

Leela felt very much infatuated by him, yet she tried not to show it and stood there silent.

He therefore decided that his best policy was to continue with explaining his true feelings to her. "You amazed and mystified me in a way I've never been touched by a woman before. Please forgive me, but I always imagined that a cyclops would be a grotesque, gruesome monster, but when I saw the angel lying before me, I guess I just fell in love with ya face. I'm sorry, but I never wanted to forget ya, so I felt that if I put ya on canvass, I'd have ya forever."

Flattered, she queried, "Can I ask, that without knowing my name, what did you, by chance, name your collection?"

"I had to make up a name for ya myself, so I chose Violet after the colour of ya hair."

Leela gave out a small chuckle, but soon got back to her interrogation. "You never did find out what I really looked like underneath those sheets, did you?"

The married man's heart began to pump faster, at what the married woman seemed to have proposed. "Was that an offer, because if it was, well we haven't got long before Chuck gets back from his lunchbreak?"

"I didn't say anything about doing that with you," Leela giggled, coyly.

"Well, you certainly seemed to hint it."

Her adrenalin began to flow as fast as her companion's, as her pulse started to race as fast as her fancy. She soon found herself breathing heavily, joining Harry in the silly uttered conversations appearing as her blood pumped harder. "Ohhh... why are you so hard to resist," she finally blurted out, when she could help herself no more. She grabbed hold of his face, and smothered its entire surface area in dozens of little kisses.

As he grabbed and kissed her back, between his smooches, he managed to whisper, sensuously, to her, "Forget about Chuck, what time's ya man coming home?"

"No, we mustn't forget about Chuck, he'll be here in about half-an-hour, but Fry won't be back for another two to three days now."

He took hold of her even tighter. "Does that mean I can come back in the evenings too, so we can have the nights together as well as the days?"

Leela's reply was hungry, "Ohhh yes! Harry, kiss me, so I'll remember you this time, make me feel like a... satisfied woman, a wanted woman!"

While still holding her tightly, he pushed his lips to hers passionately, as she did likewise. They both fell to their knees, and just did it, there and then, outside the bathroom door.

After Chuck's workshift had finished at 5pm, Harry stayed behind with Leela, as Fry had left his beautiful, yet lonely, wife in the clasps of an equally attractive, lonely man. As her new friend was now her guest though, she had sat him down next to her on her three seater burgundy couch, and made him comfortable with coffee and doughnuts.

While talking to each other about themselves, they gradually got on to the other people in their lives. "I know ya have a six month old daughter, because she's in the bedroom, but I don't know much about ya husband, except that he's a compulsive gambler. Tell me about Fry, and then I'll tell you about Carol."

Leela took a deep breath, ready to list the details and faults of her husband. "Well, he's not just a compulsive gambler, he's completely obsessed with his toy robot, Bender. Everything Bender does, he seems to do exactly the same: Bender gambles thousands at a time, he gambles the same amount; Bender has to drink to stay sober, but Fry's now turning into an alcoholic; Bender chases and chats up robot babes, without being the proud owner of a wiener, and as for Fry, well he just says he enjoys the variety; Bender never lifts a finger for the delivery service we all work for, and other than captaining the ship for the next couple of days, because that's usually my job, Fry's really idle and lazy."

Harry cut in, "OK, I think I get the picture. Is that him over there?" He pointed to a large framed wedding photo, hanging on the wall.

"Yeah, that's him, but I still don't know much about your wife, except that she's a curvy, blonde bimbo... Carol was it?"

"That's right, and she's very similar to your Fry in many ways, too. For a start, she's always in that casino, spending every last penny in my pocket, and I, like an idiot, work all the God-given hours to feed her gambling habit." He began to spill out his wife’s life-story, like Leela did Fry’s. "And not just that, but she’s also an alcoholic. She’ll sleep with anyone who’ll buy her a drink... and that includes both men and women!"

He took a long sip of his coffee, then continued, "I work my socks off to afford her. She's completely useless, ya know. She acts like a 5 year-old in furs... I really can’t talk to her at all. Ya know, I only got her to pose for those paintings by offering to buy her a red hover car."

While looking into her half-empty mug, she felt that there were a couple of things she forgot to mention. "You’re right, your Carol seems very similar to Fry, despite just a couple of carnal wants though. Fry isn’t quite an alcoholic yet, not unless Bender gets his way with him. Oh yes, and I don’t think either of them are into boys... not that I know of, anyway."

"Well, aren't you the lucky one. Carol entertains all sorts, every day of the week. She’ll probably be entertaining several of her so-called friends she’s found in a casino or bar somewhere to an erotic party of some sort tonight, as well."

He then went onto a little secret of his own. "To tell ya the truth, I haven’t had any real affections for her in months, her antics have turned me off her in that way. I sometimes sleep at Chuck’s place to get away from her, unless, of course, I find somewhere else to crash out, like tonight, here with you. But Chuck needs privacy of his own, so I can't always use that as an escape.

"I suppose you're going to ask why I continue to stay with her... but I can't really answer that. Maybe it's because I feel she's vulnerable, and I'm somehow responsible for her in some way. I don't know, that makes me sound like her father or something... rather than her husband."

He paused for a few seconds, then his face seemed to light up with a thought that entertained him. "Anyway, I’ve gotta get her to pose for that Violet collection you’ve been hearing so much about."

They sat in silence for a moment, pondering what life had been like to them. Leela was still confused, and needed a further explanation. "But, how could you two have fallen out of love with each other after just one year?" Leela asked, curiously, as she finished off her doughnut, bringing a napkin to her lips, cleaning off the crumbs and sugar.

He swallowed hard, as he prepared to tell her all. "I was the fool who married the beautiful woman he picked up in the casino, not thinking about the consequences. But, if what you’re really asking is: 'why don’t I do it with her anymore?' Well, not only am I turned off with her goings on... I’m also frightened... in case I catch something from her. I mean, I’m not 35-years-old yet, and I don’t wanna go mad before my time, like I heard some of these diseases can do to you."

Leela looked  extremely shocked, as she was only 33-years-old herself, yet wondered why she’d never thought of it before. "Do you really think it’s something worth worrying about? I mean, as far as I know, Fry sleeps around like crazy, but I’ve never noticed anything strange down below."

Harry felt a little perturbed, realizing the situation. "Don't you think you ought to have a check-up, or something?"

"I suppose you're right," she concurred, absorbing everything he was saying to her, realizing her own carelessness. "Maybe I’ll go and have a test for any sexually transmitted diseases tomorrow, while Fry’s still on his special delivery. Harry, I'm sorry... I didn't realize... it just never crossed my mind that he could have given me something, or that I could have possibly given it to you... not until you just mentioned it anyway." She suddenly felt extremely guilty about not realizing the possibility, feeling that she had failed not only herself, but someone else as well. Harry, however, put his arm around her, comforting her selflessly, knowing the fear and anxiety that would be going through her mind.

Harry slept with Leela overnight, in her conjugal bed, keeping her company - Carol wouldn't have noticed he was missing, anyway, and it would also mean that Chuck wouldn't have his privacy invaded again. He stayed for breakfast at her apartment, then he left bright and early to pick up his assistant, and the company hover van, which was kept at his friend's apartment.

Chapter 3 - Big Night Out

Harry picked up his best friend, and work colleague, drove the work van back to Leela's home, then restarted work on the ceiling.

At noon, all three of them, plus Alison, went to lunch together at the local Homer Simpson's Pizza Gut to eat in, which was around the corner from Leela's apartment. This helped them escape all the flying dust around the house, and get a little fresh air for the baby. Anyway, it also gave them some clean toilets to use, for a change.

Alison also enjoyed herself, for after eating her mashed apple baby food, Leela put her back into the Moses basket she arrived in, where she was mollycoddled by three pizzeria waitresses. They all tickled her tummy as she giggled non-stop. The first waitress began to speak in baby language, rubbing her nose against Alison's. "Oooohhh, aren't you a beautiful baby."

The second began to also rub her nose into Alison's face, still tickling her tummy, and speaking baby talk. "Oooohhh, you're so cute," she told the baby, as she noticed the two, big blue eyes and dinky little nose. "You look just like your daddy." However, she had looked at Chuck, who had big blue eyes and a dinky nose too... under the belief that he was the father! This caused him to go red with embarrassment, while the other two laughed at him.

The third and last waitress, who was also tickling Alison with one hand, rubbed the other one over her soft head of thick purple hair, and reassuringly declared, "Don't listen to them baby, it's plainly obvious who's your mommy!"

Just after they'd left, Leela did something that she'd never have done after only just getting to know someone: she left her baby and her doorkey with Harry, who was practically still an acquaintance she'd only just met. However, this reflected the feelings that she had for him, that he was someone she felt she could trust.

She then split for the hospital to have an STD test done. Although she never really believed Fry was carrying any sort of disease, she did see eye to eye with Harry on the safe rather than sorry question.

After returning home, she hoped that she was right about Harry, and as sure as could be, the place looked exactly the same as before she'd left: two workmen, one baby, and a house full of rubble and sawdust. Except, it seemed that the two workmen were more preoccupied with the baby's needs than with fixing the place up... still, Leela wasn't angry, it looked quite cute!

As the day before, Chuck left at 5pm and Harry stayed over at Leela's apartment, waiting for her to give him the news he wanted to hear from her. The hospital had given her the results of her STD test in an unopened letter, which she wanted to open and read together with him, as it involved the both of them. She felt as if she'd just die if it turned out to be positive, therefore gave it to Harry to open.

As she handed it over, he tore the envelope slowly, very frightened that both he and the woman he loved could soon end up getting some treatment or other. With a worried look on his face, he took out the letter from the envelope, and slowly unfolded it. He looked at it, his face remained expressionless... then he handed it to her. "I think you ought to read this."

She became alarmed at his blank look and words. She then looked down at her STD test, finding the result, then she looked over at Harry, who had started chuckling away by himself. She sat for a moment, staring at the man who found this situation funny, then gave him a mean, yet strangely cute, look and blurted out, "You little shit, you made me believe I had something!" She began to hit him repeatedly with the letter, while he covered his head with his arm, trying his best to protect himself, as he continued to chuckle away. After a couple of minutes playfighting, they stopped, and both exchanged relieved looks at the negative result.

The moment's silence was then broken by Leela proposing to make coffee, it would help in calming her down, as she had something else to inform him. So, she went off to the kitchen, to make the beverage and to prepare herself with what she wanted to say to Harry. After a few minutes, she came out holding two mugs of hot coffee. "I think you should know, Fry'll be home tomorrow night."

Harry sighed at those words, but he quickly decided that he wanted to make this last night a magical one. "Well, how about going out tonight for a big celebration? It's our last night together being alone, and seeing as I've just got paid for the week, we can make it something to remember, and anyway, I don't want Carol to get her measly hands on it."

As he crossed his finger's behind his back, praying to anybody out there that she would say yes, she grabbed him and gave him a big wet kiss on the lips. "I'd really like that a lot," she smiled, then jumped into his strong arms, which cradled her as he rocked.

As he took her weight, the embarrassed loverboy declared, "There's a great little place in Manhattan, and it's called the Casablanca. I've always wanted to escort a beautiful female past the two big doormen at the front; an intelligent female, at that!"

Leela blushed; all this flattery for poor old her! "So it's a fancy place then?" she asked, wondering exactly how he wanted her to dress up.

"Oh yes, everybody's in either a tuxedo or evening gown, depending on what sex they are, of course. Although, even that rule is broken, now and then!" Both laughed.

"Well, I have plenty of evening gowns. Fry acquires them for me, to drag me up the casino with him occasionally, just to show me off to some of his gambling so-called 'friends', trying to make them believe he has some money. Not that we have any of our own, after all, we've given it all to them!" Thinking of Fry changed her expression from happiness to depression.

Harry kissed her again, relieving her of bitter memories, and then let her down on her own two feet. "I better go home, get out of these dirty clothes and have a bath. I'm going ta get dressed in my best suit for the girl of my dreams. Oh, I'm gonna have ta leave my wallet down here though, so you-know-who can't get hold of it. Then I'll be back and pick ya up in our blood-red sports car. God knows why she wanted it for, she can't even drive! I think it's just to sit outside our house for show."

Leela knew that the sooner he left, the sooner he'd be back in her arms again. She let him out, asked the lady upstairs to babysit for her tonight, then started to look forward to her big night out.

She went through her wardrobe and flicked through most of the dresses Fry had got (probably stolen by Bender, more like!) for her, until she'd arrived at a long black silk number. It was a very sexy, slinky dress, with a very low neckline, and a long slit up the side. It also had sparkling silver trimmings, covering these most provocative areas, to catch her man's eye. Leela really felt he was something special... or she wouldn't have worn this dress, with just its two stringy silver trimming straps helping to hold it up.

As she looked at herself, up and down her full-length mirror, she thought, "I don't think I've ever worn this dress for Fry before, it was always too revealing for me to try. But, as the captain, I suggest life's worth a risk every now and again, especially something so right... don't you agree?"

As she stared at herself in the mirror, asking her reflection for approval, the woman in the mirror looked into Leela's eye with approval, and seemed to reply to her, "Yes, definitely take the risk, Captain. This is the dress you absolutely must wear tonight! It highlight's all your best points: your shapely bosom, tiny waist, and incredibly seductive rounded bottom!"

She gave a full head-to-toe wiggle to herself, then continued asking her reflection for a second opinion, who was pleased to answer: "The total look is just so erotic on you, just so worthy of being taken on a hot, steamy night out with your new passionate guy. You only have one more lusty night of love left, with which you can replay the fantastic memories of being treated like a celebrity; to be an American Beauty. That is until your redhead dork of a husband comes home tomorrow, and spoils everything for you! Grab the chance to at least enjoy yourself for at least one day since you were born... or you may never get the chance again... ever!"

Leela stood there still for a while, thinking hard about what the lady in the mirror had said to her, echoing her every thought. She thought the woman deserved some sort of reaction for her sound advice, then perhaps the reflection would think about giving her some more sound suggestions. "Oh, Miss Mirror, can you help me with an even bigger problem?" Leela asked her out loud. "Since you seem to know Fry just as well as I do, tell me what I should do? You see, I thought after marrying me, Fry would stop all his childish games and become much more responsible; gradually start to be less influenced by people like Bender, and come ever closer to me, have a family where we could both be loving parents to our children, and lastly, even get a house with a backyard where the kids could play. Is that too much to ask?"

The reflection was a very wise woman, and as she seemed to know Leela's total life story, she was very well equipped to act as counsellor. "Fry was never really the right man for you, was he? After all, you even had doubts before you married him, five years ago. But, he didn't change, did he, even when he said 'I will' for you? He's still exactly the same... like an idle clone of Bender, nothing different.

"But life isn't perfect, it's full of ups and downs, and things going wrong. You have allowed yourself to be taken for granted by others, for as long as you can remember. In fact, the only thing that's ever gone right for you was Alison."

At last, the wise woman had persuaded her to do what she knew was the right thing all along... to go out and get her right man. After all, she couldn't communicate with Fry even a little, and she had little in common with him, bar the fact that both of them had felt, at the time of marriage, at the least, to be alone and out of place in this world. For a start, he acted like a teenager, instead of his real age of 33, and being the same age as him, she had to act like his mother! She felt as if she'd been cut off from the world... till now!

The reflection was right, somebody out there was finally giving her the loving relationship she deserved, so the captain should take one of the biggest risks in her life, and grab her chance. She could talk to Harry, confide in him about both love and life in a very adult way, as he could with her. Yes, she could communicate with Harry, he was everything Fry wasn't; he was everything she ever wanted. Yes, he was everything!

Time was passing quickly, and she knew she had to pull herself away from the mirror if she was going to be ready for her dream date, as she wasn't the keep 'em waiting Amy type of girl. As she realized her dream lover could arrive any moment now, she felt that time was too short to fix her hair, and let it hang loose, flowing over her shoulders.

While she sat in front of the dressing table, completing her American Beauty, cool babe look, with two long dangling silver earrings, she heard a knocking at the door... Harry was here, and she had finished just in time. She zoomed to the door like lightning, to open it fast.

"FRY!" she yelped.

"Hi honey, I'm home.... Surprised to see me?"

"You're back early, aren't you?" As Leela smelt alcohol on Fry's breath, which wasn't unusual for him, and he seemed to be in quite a happy kind of mood, she gathered she may just be able to escape being caught in the act, so to speak.

"Yeah, we were there and back, just like that; it was a very quick delivery," he stuttered aloud, fumbling on every word and flopping his whole body entirely over her. "Sorry, but last night when we finished the delivery, me and Bender popped in at an open bar, and we spent all our wages on getting drunk and picking up a couple of chicks we met inside... isn't it funny what you can pick up with a drink, nowadays."

As far as Leela was concerned, it was anything but funny; it was completely destroying her life. Not only had he spent his wages, he'd also gone behind her back. She sensed the irony and seeming hypocrisy of the situation; nevertheless she had reasons, but what reasons did he have! "You picked her up with a drink!" she screamed into his bulging red eyes, with blood capillaries about to burst. "Good God, you could catch anything!"

Fry seemed to get a buzz out of maddening her, and therefore continued his mission of provoking her for his amusement. "I think mine was called Cool Carol. Bender's robo-femme was called Gold-er-lina, and she was made of real golden metal."

"It's a shame you never melted her down and brought her back home with you," came Leela's sarcastic reply, while thinking of their incredible debts. It then suddenly hit her, that Carol was also the name of Harry's wife. It just may, or may not, have been the very same woman. Either way, Fry could have caught a sexually transmitted disease of some sort; she was surprised he hadn't caught it years ago.

With Fry slumped over her, she lifted his arms off of her shoulders, and allowed him to drop to the floor, still laughing hilariously at something he did with Bender on their night out clubbing. She was left speechless for a moment, he'd gone out and spent his wages on not just drink and any old babe, but he'd gone out with that floozy!

She finally decided she would take him to the hospital on Monday, so that he could have an STD test. She then left him slumped against the front door, as she went to get a bucket, in case he started puking before she got his head into the toilet bowl.

While she was in the kitchen, occupied by searching for the bucket... knock, knock, knock was rapped on the front door. Behind the door, a very well-dressed, handsome Harry, was expecting to find his very beautiful, lovely Leela!

Leela, though, couldn't hear a thing, as she was in the other room, and so a jolly drunk dork reached for the door knob from the floor, where he sat, forcing it around as he flopped back down to the floor again. As somebody pushed the door open from behind, then popped his head around the door, a madly blinking Fry had to take a second look, just to check he was seeing correctly, then he turned his head around to the inside of the house to tell Leela who he'd just seen.

"Hey Leela, Humphrey Bogart's at the door!" He then turned around to face Harry again. "Shouldn't you be a head-in-a-jar, Humphrey?" he asked, just a little curious as to why this 20th century celebrity had his own body.

After Leela had found the bucket, she made her way back to the hallway, towards the door. As she walked through the final entrance to where Fry was interrogating the man who was dressed up to take her to dinner tonight, the also dressed up dinner date to be became frozen stiff with shock, as she stopped where she stood and dropped the bucket to the floor.

It was pretty obvious to Harry what had happened, so he answered Fry with the first thing he could think of: "Umm, err, I bought the body from a pawn shop, just especially to come and tell one Mrs Turanga Leela Fry, that her name had been pulled out at random to be my special, exclusive escort to the Casablanca tonight." Harry looked towards Leela's direction. "Are you the beautiful lady I'm suppose to be escorting? I was given this address by the New New York Film Academy to come here personally and pick you up, then drive you down to a once in a lifetime, behind the scenes, look at the making of a still very popular classic." It came out fast and a little fumbled, as it was a quick answer, in reply to Fry's own question about the head-in-a-jar.

As Fry had been drinking, he wasn't quite with it, so as he believed Harry was the real Humphrey Bogart, Harry had become the real Humphrey Bogart. Fry's drinking had backfired on him, for if he was completely sober, he would have known that the man at the door wasn't, of course, a celebrity head-in-a-jar sitting on top of a pawned body, but just a lookalike, with his own head firmly attached to his own body.

Fry crawled happily towards his wife, cheerfully spilling out the so-called good news to her. "Leela, Leela, did you hear that? It's your lucky day today... ohh, so that's why you're all dolled up, you'd been told he was coming previously, hadn't you?"

Whenever Fry was completely intoxicated like this, Leela could never leave him, or even trust him to look after himself, but had to make sure he was safe, which usually started with her dragging him to the toilet bowl and sticking his head down it. She would force two of her fingers between his teeth and down his throat, until she could finally make him puke up. Besides, she also felt very guilty about leaving him alone, to have an affair with another man, who was standing on her doorstep.

"Please understand," she looked at her lover with a tear running down her face, as she softly spoke, "I want to go, really I do, but I just can't."

"I understand," he answered, as he stared into her big beautiful eye, noticing how the tears of emotion streaming down her cheeks were for him. He supposed he'd always guessed her love was true, and couldn't leave her alone with the drunken slob. "Can I help ya with him... he looks a handful?"

"Thank you, I would appreciate it... it'd take me quite some time by myself."

As Leela grabbed hold of Fry's arms, and Harry his feet, they carried him into the bathroom together. Harry forced his head down the toilet, while she did what she had done a hundred times before: stuck her fingers down his throat.

"Come on Fry, get it all out!" she screeched, trying to encourage him to extract as much as possible.

"Errrhhh... errrhhh... errrhhh, " puked Fry.

"Is there any more Fry, just a little bit even?"

"Errrhhh... errrhhh... umm, I think that's it Leela," he croaked, just about managing to speak one line.

She turned to face Harry, to ask for a little more help. "I think he's almost done now. After he's gotten the last of it out, could you help me get him into to bed, so he can sleep this off?" Harry helped Leela bring Fry to the bedroom, where they undressed him and put him into the bed. He was so drunk that he didn't know what was going on, but just fell asleep like a baby.

By the time they'd finished, they were both exhausted. Harry wondered how Leela managed to cope with the drunk by herself. She'd done it so many times before though, she'd gotten used to it throughout the years. She then took her lover to the kitchen, and asked him if he'd like a coffee. "That'd be lovely... I think I'll need one after this," he answered, gratefully.

They sat there, on either side of the kitchen table, quite silent while drinking their coffee. The events that took place before Fry's arrival couldn't easily be forgotten, yet using her lover to help out her husband seemed to make her feel as if she was cheating on both of them... an incredibly guilty sort of feeling! Harry also knew though that she couldn't go out with him that night, needing to sort her own life out first, so after they'd finished drinking their coffee, he bid her farewell.

She took him to the front door, and as they looked at each other, they worried about what was to become of them both, now that Fry had returned. They had also both made crazy fantasies inside their heads about their big night out, yet both were now sad at the opportunity that had been missed. All they had left was an unknown dream-world of what could have been, based on the memories of what had happened previously. Leela, who realized it was getting very late, gave Harry a goodnight kiss, then bid him goodnight.

Now, she had to remain at home with Fry, while her lover had to go back to his carefree Carol. Life had been so cruel to the two of them: both madly in love, but just in love with the wrong person, it seemed. Nobody said life was supposed to be easy!

Chapter 4 - Walls Have Ears

After returning to his own home on that same Saturday, complete with his pay packet, which was suppose to be spent on his big night out with the real Violet from his paintings, Harry did what he used to do every weekend. It was the same old routine, and he'd learnt it by heart, after doing it every week since he'd been married to Carol. He'd unlock the door, walk through the hallway to the lounge, slump himself down on a black leather couch, then wait for Carol to return from entertaining whoever it was, wherever it was. He always lay there, wondering which poor bastard she'd be giving something to, and if Fry was lucky tonight, it wouldn't have been him!

Harry couldn't stand his lifestyle with Carol anymore... he couldn't stand her anymore. He knew he had to do something right now, or it would be like this forever. He couldn't stomach fathering her any longer; he now had feelings for someone who could responsibly look after herself, and could love him, as he could love her.

He had to get out, leave Carol for the world to devour, it was now of never! He started packing his clothes and other stuff, and then he packed his most precious belongings, also being the only thing that he had any real love for in his entire home, the only thing he really wanted: his Violet collection. After packing, he stuck his belongings in the boot of his red hover car that he'd originally bought as a show piece for Carol. He'd come back next week for anything that remained. He then drove straight back up to his best friend's apartment.

When he got there, he told Chuck he'd made a firm strong decision to file for a divorce, for he loved the lady he had left behind much more than the one who was his wife. He needed someone to talk to, and his best friend was always there to listen. He poured out his heart, about how he had an affectionate, caring relationship with Leela, but everything for Carol had completely gone. All his emotions came out, to the only other person in the world he trusted, other than Leela. Chuck had agreed that he should go ahead with his plans. Besides, he never liked Carol much, anyway.

On Monday morning, when Fry was sober again, Leela asked him to go and have an STD test at the hospital and bring her back the results. She didn't trust him to return with them, unless she saw the proof in black-and-white - he might lie to her about his whereabouts, when he'd really just go out drinking or something. She was also very concerned about this Cool Carol, or whoever she was... or wasn't.

As she'd remembered Harry's words well, she repeated them to Fry: "Please, just to keep me from worrying about you, go and have the test done. It may be nothing at all, but it's better to be safe than sorry."

Fry did as she asked, as he was a little concerned himself, while his wife stayed at home and awaited the arrival of her lover... the builder.

Other than being totally out of his mind, falling to sleep, and not recalling Harry at all, which was quite normal for Fry, the rest of his morning was to be anything but average.

Fry was still out having his STD test done, when the builders turned up at the door. Chuck went through his typical routine of going on ahead alone, leaving the two lovers together in the hallway. "How's Fry?" Harry asked, without really that much sympathy in his voice, as he mistrusted him intensely, and didn't like him that much either.

Fry was still at the hospital when Harry had arrived to finish the work on Leela's bathroom, so she decided to explain why he wasn't around. "He had a terrible hangover, but other than that he was OK this morning. He's gone off to the hospital, to have one of those tests done. I told him about Cool Carol, and that she could be the wife of a friend of mine. It's the only way I got him to go."

Harry asked her, slightly emotionally, "Have you told him about us?"

The answer was no, but she couldn't bring herself to say it, therefore replied with, "Have you told Carol about me?"

He told her about his weekend activities. "I'm filing for divorce, and I've moved into Chuck's place permanently now.

"How about you? I want to know if you've even mentioned the slightest notion about our relationship together. Anything at all?"

The embarrassed look on Leela's face said everything, as the man who was impatient to take the other man's wife began to get a little overemotional."Do you want me to tell him when he gets back home, so he can buy a gun and shoot me where I stand... or would you like me to fix your ceiling first, and then have him kill me?" There was slight sarcasm in his voice, though it seemed he had the right to talk this way. He was madly in love with the woman who stood before him, yet he was becoming very upset with the way she pushed him aside for a man she cared much less about.

After a few seconds of silence, Harry decided to ask her the most important question on his mind: "Tell me Leela, do you still love him? Because if you do, I'll leave here and now and get another builder to take my place at the firm. If I see you everyday, knowing that I couldn't have you, it'll break my heart."

"I care for him a lot... like a good friend," she answered reluctantly, her heart breaking as speedily as his, "looking out for him whenever he needs me."

Harry was getting more upset with her every word, and felt he needed some kind of feedback for his loving. "And me... do you care a lot for me? Because I need you right now. Let's run away together somewhere... anywhere, anyplace, I really don't care, right this instant, and just forget the rest of the world exists. I took the car when I left Carol. It's sitting outside Chuck's apartment, so we can fill up the tank and leave as soon as you're ready."

He wanted her to say yes, she wanted to say yes, but as everything seemed to be speeding past her like lightning, she had to answer him with, "I'm sorry, I think we need to slow down a little, everything's just flashing before my eye so quickly. I need more time to think, to make such a responsible decision like this."

Harry knew she was right, and wondered what came over him so quickly. "No, I should be the one to apologize, I shouldn't have pressed you like that. Is there any way I could see you outside of working hours, maybe when Fry's on a play-date with Bender, perhaps we could meet at some secret place, and go on a play-date of our own?"

Her lover hadn't moved an inch from the doorway since he'd entered the apartment, and she kind of had a feeling that he might just turn around and walk out again, so she had to tell him fast, or she'd never get her perfect guy. She had to propose a quick date first though, before her husband returned home. Like the wise woman in the mirror had told her, she had to take the risk, and grab her chance, for it was now or never. "Fry'll be back any minute, but Bender'll be round here tomorrow night, at around 7pm. We could still have that big night out if you really want to?" She stood there, awaiting his reply.

"I'll pick you up at eight, and we can make plans for the Casablanca again."

"It's a date," she cheerfully told him, wanting desperately to make up to him for their previous missed date. Anyway, it was now or never, as she desperately wanted to alter the future that fate had seemingly given to her with the hapless Fry, forever dragging her down, and find a future where she felt free from the previous pains in her life.

As sure as could be, Fry had returned from the hospital with the test results: negative! Leela sat on her burgundy couch, scratching her head as she wondered how the heck Fry got the all clear. He, at least, felt very relieved, as it had never really crossed his mind before to take such a test, when he was out wetting his whistle.

Leela then asked Fry to clean Alison, as it was time to do so, while she went to the kitchen to make a snack for Fry and the builders. However, Fry just switched on the TV and began to watch the cartoons, slouching on the couch with a glass and a can of beer at his side.

Although Alison lay screaming her eyes out, soaking wet in the basket next to him, he seemed to arrive at the idea that she was her mother's problem - as most men seem to do. "Come and change the baby, Leela," he called to her, as she was still preparing the food for everybody there.

As the walls in their crummy little apartment were so thin, she'd managed to hear him, and came out as fast as she could... for the baby's sake. "Oh Fry, you're such a lazy slob!" she remarked, angrily, as she noticed him doing absolutely nothing at all.

As Fry took Leela for granted twenty-four hours a day, he didn't just use her, but also blocked his ears to anything that he didn't want to hear. "What was that?" he managed.

"You never heard a word I said, did you?" She didn't know why she'd bothered asking, as she knew the answer already... everything she said to Fry used to go into one ear and come out the other. She finally added, "I don't know why I waste my breath." Then she turned all her concentration onto their daughter.

After changing the baby, Leela sat on the couch next to Fry, to attempt to have a word with him, while he continued watching the cartoons. "Fry, don't you think that if it takes two to make a baby, then two should take care of it?"

"Should they?" he asked. Though whatever her reply was, as always, never really concerned him anyway... he only heard what he wanted to hear - what was important to him.

She tried her best, to get some sort of decent reply. "You'll be sorry one day, Fry. I'll take Alison and leave you forever if you don't get your act together, and you wouldn't like that, would you?"

Although he heard what Leela had put to him, he didn't actually believe it, so came back at her with, "Huh! You wouldn't leave me! Admit it, I'm a real swell catch.

"Amy couldn't keep her hands off me... remember how she used to follow me around all over the place. I bet she secretly didn't want Zoidberg to separate us, because she wanted me with her till eternity. And, I wouldn't be surprised if every woman I've screwed felt exactly the same way... and that includes you!"

Leela was beginning to lose her patience and temper with him, so decided to tell him exactly how she felt: about how he treated not just her, but also some of the other women in his life. "You used Amy for your own personal pleasure and enjoyment, and now you're treating me, not just as your personal slave, to do all your dirty work for you, but also as your personal bodyguard, to come and rescue you whenever you're in trouble; mostly in trouble with paying debts.

"For a start, you couldn't afford to pay for your own booze, babes and gambling on just your own wages, so you decided to take all mine too. Why didn't you marry Bender instead of me... then you could live off his wages, instead of mine!"

"You leave Bender out of this," screamed Fry. "He's the best friend I ever had!"

"You mean the best scrounger you ever had... just like a hyena!" The cyclops screamed back in anger, throwing the soiled nappy from her hand, straight into Fry's face. "I hardly ever see you eat shit... so I thought I'd better feed you. Every time I look at you, you seem to be drinking that piss on the table over there; and even that looks like something you did yourself!"

This made him even angrier than she was, so he then stood up from slouching on the couch, watching his favourite cartoons, put the soiled nappy into a small wastebin next to the TV, then walked back and picked up his glass of beer from the table in front of where he was sitting. "You're just a bossy, one-eyed bitch!" he continued, and threw the entire contents of the glass into her face, aiming for her one and only eye.

She shut her eye tightly from the stinging sensation, as her hands pressed hard against her face to guard and protect her eye. Although Alison had been changed and put back into her Moses basket still crying her eyes out, she was no concern of either Leela's or Fry's for the development of the abusive insults against each other, each awaiting for the other to back down.

The marriage row had become full-blown, continuing for over an hour, and Leela just couldn't bear his provocations any longer. She therefore strapped Alison around her body, in her baby carrier, and walked out in a huff, slamming the door behind her.

This meant Fry was alone with Harry and Chuck, as he began to scream at them, for the deafening sound of their electric drills against the ceiling. "Hey you two," he hollered loudly from the couch, where he had returned to watch his cartoons. Still extremely furious, his anger was now reflected on the two builders. "I'm trying to watch TV... stop that dentist's drill, or I'll f**king flush it down the can hole." As the builders stood on ladders and drilled in planks of wood into the ceiling, which were to also be the base of the landlady's apartment, they took no notice of a man that neither of them particularly liked anyway.

At one point, during the horrendous verbal fight that had just occurred, Harry felt that Fry would try to hurt his beautiful wife, and he wanted to run into the middle of it, to box Fry's brains out. Chuck had persuaded his friend not to though, and to just let the marriage row run its course, unless any physical violence could be heard to have been put upon her. The lover could barely listen to it sometimes, therefore he put his drill up to a much stronger setting, just to make his machine work itself into a much faster, much louder noise. This way, he could block out any of their screaming and shouting from entering into his eardrums.

They continued to chat away, loudly, as to compensate for the din of the drilling. They weren't really concentrating on anything Fry was saying to them; not that they cared! Besides, the builders had to reach a deadline by tomorrow, so whether they liked it or not - even if Fry liked it or not - they just had to continue finishing whatever was left of the ceiling. Quite a large slab of the wall had also fallen down, which also needed replacing. Most of their attention, therefore, went either to their work or the same thing they'd been talking about for the last two weeks: Leela.

As Fry was in the other room trying to watch TV, and they were making such a racket with their drills and tools, the delivery boy in the other room had suddenly become an insignificant squirt in the eyes of the workmen. They became confident to talk further about what was happening inside their own lives, and the host of the household. "Well, what did you two talk about at the the door this morning?" queried Chuck, desperate to know if there was any further development in Harry's moving home.

Harry's temper was lightening up, he had calmed down enough to answer Chuck's enquiry. "I s'pose I told her about the divorce, how Carol had been getting on my nerves for a long time, and I just couldn't take it anymore."

Fry wasn't really paying that much attention until his wife's lover added, quite loud enough to prick up his ears, "It just took somebody as wonderful as Leela to open my eyes and make me realize how blind I've been all this time. Ya know Chuck, I've never felt this way about anybody before... ever."

This made Fry jump up, quite startled. He turned the volume of the TV down, grabbed the empty pint glass, which sat on the table in front of him, and put the glass against the wall to listen to what they were saying.

"So, what's the next step?" continued Chuck, as he played the social worker. "Does the cyclops feel the same way?"

Fry stuck his ear ever closer to the glass, trying to get as much of the discussion as possible, for he too wanted to know the answer to this question.

"I don't know, but if she'd leave him, take the baby, and run away with me, then I'd know for certain."

"But, we'll be finished with this bathroom tomorrow, so you may never see her again after that," Chuck reminded his friend, just stating the obvious.

Lastly, Harry mentioned the only thing Fry needed to hear in order to satisfy his work of playing detective for the night: "As it goes, she told me she was in love with me, and we made a date to meet at the Casablanca at eight tonight."

The walls had enormous ears! Fry never thought in a million years that Leela, of all people, could possibly have an affair. Especially, not while possessing a man so perfect as himself. After all, he was a real swell catch! Why on Earth would she possibly want another man, when she had him!

Chapter 5 - Casablanca

When Bender arrived at the apartment at 7pm sharp the day after, Leela's secret love affair with the builder and all her plans for tonight were explained to the robot in detail. Although Bender was initially upset at having his evening disturbed by Fry's insistence, he was happy to escort his best friend to the Casablanca for the gossip, as he had to see it to believe it!

As Fry and Bender slyly sneaked off together to the Casablanca, the unsuspecting wife dolled herself up like an American Beauty... exactly how she had done so on her previous missed big night out. As far as she knew, everything was going smoothly this time: Fry had gone to the casino with Bender, the landlady was baby-sitting for Alison, and her dream lover had arrived at eight on the dot, to drive her to her big night out.

Meanwhile, already at the Casablanca, Fry and Bender seated themselves in a small cubicle for two, behind blue velvet curtains. They'd taken the last hidden lovers cubicle, specifically so they could spy on Leela and her new man. This meant, when the lovers arrived, they would have to sit at a table in the open space, where the two sly spies could keep a close eye on them, without being seen. They played and messed about like children for a while; opening and closing the little slit, which separated the two pieces of blue velvet, just to play I Spy with my Leela's eye....

To see the lady of their jokes with any man other than Fry seemed so unlikely, and neither of them really believed it would happen. Therefore, when Fry heard a man much better looking than himself speaking to his workmate about his date tonight, he felt he must have misheard or misunderstood something that had been said.

After they'd played their childish games till 8.30pm, Bender's binocular looking eyes made their way out of the blue velvet curtains, towards the rotating doors. "Hey Fry, I spy with my Leela's eye... something beginning with P... a purple haired cyclops, with a human male attached to her arm!"

"What! Where?" Fry shrieked, not really wanting to believe that she would ever run off with somebody else. "Good God, it's true!" he shrieked again, in amazement and shock.

"Let me see! Let me see!" Bender blurted out, wanting to get a little more of the action. Besides, he was just dying to steal a peek, in order to chatter to everybody at Planet Express tomorrow, especially Amy... she'll never believe that she's finally met her match!

"Oh Wow! Wait till I tell Zoidberg what they've just ordered... wasn't that one of his relatives I just saw arriving on a plate? This is really hot stuff man, he'll probably snap her to pieces with his claws, and eat her up. Yum, yum, juicy stuff!" Bender was enjoying this, but Fry was beginning to see his world fall apart.

The lobster-eating lovebirds began to pass their meal from mouth to mouth, edging over the top of the table. They seemed more preoccupied with themselves than worrying about getting some food on their fine clothing. A lot of their expensive delicacy, was getting everywhere but their mouths... but that didn't matter, as their mouths were occupied on other business. They held each other tightly and snogged on, and when afters came, they managed to find ways to occupy themselves other than by eating it.

As Fry looked on at the lovers, feeling angry and horrified at how his woman was holding the other man, he growled fiercely, "She's never kissed me like that!"

"I don't think you've ever kissed anybody like that," came Bender's cocky return.

"I was asking for that, wasn't I?"


Fry turned to his best friend for a shoulder to cry on. "Oh Bender, tell me the truth, am I really such a loser as a lover?"

Although Bender knew that the truth would hurt Fry, his disposition said to him that this was an ideal situation to take advantage of... such was the robot called Bender! "Well, Amy seems to think so, Leela seems to think so, and judging from the amount of time you spend with your babes... I bet their none too impressed with your bedroom frolics either."

Later, after they'd finished most of their games, the two lovebirds had left the restaurant, and after spotting a beautiful romantic hotel, sitting there opposite them across the road, they went inside to consummate the evening.

The depressed Fry also left with his best friend, shortly afterwards, splitting ways, so that he could go back home and review his miserable life.

When he returned home, he felt as if he'd just been watching his wife teasing him, provocatively, exposing his weaknesses for him, and others, to see. Was he really that bad a husband, that bad a lover, that bad a father, a complete failure as a human being?

He sat in silence, on the burgundy couch, wondering whether Leela and her new man had ever made love over the top of it, while he was out making deliveries. He wondered about how long they could have been having this affair behind his back, and he'd only just found out about it!

He stopped to think for the first time ever, that it might even be his own fault, and he wasn't a real swell catch after all. If the standard model of an average man was to be a crazy, lazy, loser, who was anything but perfect, had gambled away his family's life savings, and completely ruined their lives, then at least he could be that man.

When Leela had arrived home, it was 7am. Fry had collected Alison from the landlady, and sat bottle feeding the sleeping baby in his arms, while he also lay fast asleep. After taking Leela for granted all these years, seeing her with somebody else had alerted his mind to wake up and do something to please her.

She thought she would have caught him slouching on the couch, waiting to hand her over several more IOU's, after a late night with Bender. She spoke to the sleeping father on the couch... she knew he couldn't hear her, but she spoke to him all the same. "Oh Fry," she sighed, as he lay there sleeping, "what time did you get back home from your play-date last night? Usually you wake up with a big hangover, and show up at work exactly the same way." She went closer and smelt his breath, but strangely, there was no smell of alcohol. "You didn't even drink!"

She'd taken the baby out of her husband's arms to take to bed first, but when she returned to collect him, he had already awoken.

"Good morning, Fry. You don't look like you had much to drink last night with Bender. We'll have to bring a couple of bottles to work this morning, or he'll be completely down in the dumps all day."

Fry looked up at her, with sorrow in his eyes. "Leela, there's something I think you should know... instead of going on a playdate last night, me and Bender went to the Casablanca. We saw you there... with that workman."

Leela gulped, realizing she'd been caught out, but Fry had more to say: "After seeing you, it made me wonder why you could have rejected me. You made me think harder and harder, till it finally came to me. Everything I've ever done to you over these five years we've been together, all the sorrow and heartbreak... it was my own fault, wasn't it? I'm some sort of monster." He looked down to the ground, and tears began to fall to the carpet, making wet dots.

"Oh Fry, you're not a monster... you're just a little careless, maybe sometimes a little thoughtless, that's all."

"Bender told me that he was gonna do some tongue wagging today at work, so if you start getting any dirty looks from any of the others, you know why."

Fry was acting far less hysterical than she thought he actually would, but she still managed to feel a sense of deep vulnerability inside him. There seemed a little boy lost somewhere within, which made her look deep inside her heart, to make her attempt to fish out the man she'd married. She felt she'd lost him for years, but could he possibly come back again?

Leela had to know how long he could keep his "better" self with her for, so she asked, "Will you remain this way for much longer, or will you run off with that giant tin can as soon as you get the chance? Tell me if you're only back temporarily for tonight, so I'm not left hanging on a string, waiting forever by your side in a vain hope for you to return permanently."

Fry couldn't really give her any sort of long-term, definite guarantee of any kind. "Leela, you know Bender's my best friend, you can't expect me to completely cut off my life with him. Couldn't I just say I'll do my best?"

As she sat there next to him, scratching her head, and trying desperately to find a solution suitable for both their needs, she finally came up with, "Look, I want you to spend more time with Alison and myself... we are meant to be a family, after all! Sure, you can play around with Bender... but one thing I don't want is you going off and sleeping around behind my back. After all, you didn't seem to like it when it was done to you. I don't mind you partying, now and then... but I do want to see the weekly wage before you go off and spend it... we do need stuff here!"

"But... but... I do love you and Alison... I'm your husband and her father! I know I mess around with other women, but they're just playthings to me, like pieces of meat." He noticed that Leela began to look uneasily at him, and decided he ought not to go down that route. "They're not like you, Leela. I respect and love you. You're different to me, can't you see that?"

However, that didn't seem to impress her either. Something in his voice still stressed an unwillingness to change; even a little seemed to be too much for him. All she could do was answer him in the same, unwilling way: "I wish I could believe that Fry, but after all these years of torment with you, I don't really think I could believe anything you say to me again, especially as you still can't even give me any sort of firm guarantee that you'll give up gambling, drinking or babes. I'm just getting really fed up with all your lies and all your jerking me about like this!"

She did had previous thoughts about leaving Fry, but always dismissed them due to wondering what else she could do, where else she could go; and anyway, there was Alison to think about. But, she'd found somebody to help her escape him, and his screwed-up life, and somebody who could be responsible enough to bring up Alison, too. "I'm sorry, but this is something I just have to do, probably one of the strongest and most correct decisions I've ever made in my life. I want to be free of depression, free of being taken advantage of, free of you. I want to be an independent woman, with a partner who makes me feel special, feel loved, and last, but not least, I want my partner to be able to communicate with me. You had your chance, and you screwed it all up, so now it's my turn to think about myself for a change, instead of looking after you."

Fry tried desperately to get her to stay. "But Leela, I need you, I don't know what I'd do without you, please don't go, you're all I have!" Fry's tears had now fully changed from teardrops, into heavy rain pouring over the carpet.

"Please don't try to make me stay on behalf of your sympathetic lies, Fry. You've played this trick on me so many times before, yet now looking back, I wonder whatever made me fall for it time after time. I'll never forgive myself if I fall for it again.

"Besides, I don't think you ever needed me to begin with; you only seemed to have needed my money as far as I can see! Which reminds me, all your hundreds of unpaid IOU's are sitting in the drawer next to your bedside cabinet.

"As I'm going through the heavy trauma from the effects of our past life together, I'm not sure whether I ought to see you again; whether I even want to see you again. I'm trying to tell you that I don't think I love you anymore, and I think it's best we don't see each other again. I'll leave Planet Express... besides, you always wanted to be captain didn't you?

"I'll leave it up to you to explain... if Bender hasn't called everybody up on his cellphone to do so already! Maybe I'll come and see how you're getting on in a couple of weeks, just to see how everybody's managing without me."

Fry could see that Leela had made up her mind to leave him, so there seemed to be nothing that he could say to make her stay. He felt that she didn't really know him, as if she'd never stopped to think how much she meant to him, or even why he'd never treated her like a piece of meat. Besides, she wasn't just his lover, but he felt that she was his best friend too... other than Bender.

She walked back to the nursery, put Alison in her Moses basket, and began to leave the house. "You'll get the divorce papers as soon as I can get hold of a good lawyer. But, for now, you can attempt to gain custody of Alison if you want, though I don't think you'll have that much luck, after the way you've treated her... us."

Before leaving, she packed a small suitcase, containing some belongings for her and the child, and grabbed some loose change for the NNY tube. She left the apartment still wearing the same black evening dress, as well as her favourite green coat, as it was a little chilly outside. Now she was on her way to Chuck's apartment, knowing that her lover was there to help in her desperate time of need.

Chapter 6 - Breaking Up is Hard to Do

Harry had sent another two builders to finish off the job that Chuck and himself had started. Later, he drove Leela down to her own apartment, to collect some more of her things. Besides, Chuck's place was getting a little crowded, and so they had to find somewhere of their own pretty quickly.

As they both walked into the living room, they spotted Fry, still sitting in exactly the same place, in exactly the same position that she'd left him. He was still in his best navy-blue tuxedo, that he'd worn to the Casablanca the night before, just staring into space, like a sitting dummy. He had only moved every once in a while, to go to the bathroom, but even that was delayed for as long as possible, as it reminded him so much of the man who'd "stolen" his wife.

"Hello Fry, you don't look as if you've been to work today, are you... OK?" she asked the statue, who had changed into a much paler colour, as the glum look on his face seemed to reflect how miserable he felt. Fry sat there in silence, without saying a word to anybody, but continued to stare at the blank wall.

She waved one of her hands in front of his face, to attempt to get some sort of reaction. "I've come to get my things, Fry... change out of this dress, and into something more comfortable."

When she'd finished changing and packing most of her belongings, Harry helped her take them down to the car. Deep down inside her though, there was still something that wanted her to stay behind and take care of Fry, as though something was saying, he needs you.

She felt awful, but she knew from the very beginning that although all three of them would get hurt, the perpetrator of the tragedy should suffer the hardest. If she turned back now, she would be back again for good, with the same crap occurring again and again, so she left her miserable life behind her, and walked out the door, hoping never to return.

Over the next fortnight, Harry and Leela looked for a cheap apartment to rent out, to start a new beginning of their own. However, during this time, Fry had hardly moved an inch at the now fixed-up apartment, that used to be his marriage home. Still sitting there alone, lonely and completely torn apart, Fry had began drinking to extreme excess, his alcoholism had gotten worse. Other than the effort to get up and get another bottle, as well as move his arm and wrist to lift the weight of the whiskey bottle to pour it into his mouth, he remained sitting in a tranced and an extremely traumatic state.

Why did he take her for granted? What had made him become uncaring, unresponsive... unloving? If he'd only attempted to discuss their problems over, or even sort some of them out with her, then none of this may have happened in the first place. It was really his fault, therefore he only had himself to blame for her leaving. Leela was right when she told him how he'd had his chance, yet he screwed it all up. But, for him, crying over spilt milk wasn't going to help him, yet he saw it as his only option.

Now that the two weeks were up, Leela returned to work to visit, hoping that Fry had gotten over their traumatic break-up, and made it back to work. She walked into the Planet Express lounge, where Hermes came running towards her, waving accounts for undelivered goods into her face. "Where huv ya bot been? We've all been tryin' to contact ya, but dere's no answer... we've even gone around yer house... but nuttin'. We have replaced ya wit subs, and dey're completely useless. We all been so worried."

"Both been?" replied Leela, after just realizing Fry hadn't turned up to work either. "Did you just say 'both been'?" Leela figured she already knew why Fry hadn't turned up for work over the fortnight, and so decided it was up to her to do most of the explaining.

After they all listened with great interest, eager to pick up every piece of new gossip, Amy finally remarked, "Oh cool, I've always believed a girl should be young, free and single. Besides, he was never that good in bed anyway!"

"I told them about your disgusting little romp at the Casablanca with that strange dude," Bender blurted out. Leela had become bright red with embarrassment.

She had decided she'd better go and revisit Fry again, as she felt that something may have happened to him. So, despite the difficult and traumatic events of their marriage and the after-effects of breaking up, that left quite a lot of unwanted scars, still attacking her from the inside, she just had to go and see what had happened to him. She told Hermes that she was leaving the firm, and asked if he'd stick Fry on sick leave.

After leaving Planet Express, Leela then made her way to her old apartment, just to satisfy her curiosity as to why Fry hadn't been back at work. As she still had their old doorkey, she unlocked the door, and began to walk straight through the hallway, where she began to smell something extremely pungent... like a decaying human being.

Thinking the worst for Fry, the worried sick woman zoomed like lightning into the living room. But, when she got there, she was relieved to find that Fry hadn't died, but instead hadn't bathed for the entire two weeks she'd been gone.

He still sat there, whiskey bottle in his hand, and in the same navy-blue tuxedo. He hadn't washed his hair, body or clothes, and with the addition of the bad smell of the apartment to join his own disgusting odour, it wasn't a pretty sight. To add to the scene, there were also a few delivered empty pizza boxes lying over the incredibly messy apartment floor, as well as dozens of empty whiskey bottles. He seemed to have taken their split-up rather heavily, appearing malnourished, and he seemed to be in some world of his own, as if in a state of mental exhaustion. Fry needed help, right now, and as before, when they were together, she was going to have to be the one to rescue him again.

She ran off to the bathroom, and began to run a steamy, hot bubble bath for him. She managed to drag him inside the bathroom, away from the overpowering scent in the other room. Her first major battle with Fry began with trying to separate him from the tuxedo that was stuck to him, drenched in pizza, whiskey, and bodily effluent.

After taking off his soiled clothes, she threw them in the waste bin, then with a little more trouble, she went through her old routine of sticking her fingers down his throat, to get him to puke up in the toilet. As he'd become very weak, Leela had to also help him, with all her strength, into the bath itself. Quite a lot of bathwater came splashing out, all over Leela's clothes, as she bounced the pungent naked body of Fry into the bubbled water.

The water began to change into a dark brown colour, as she sponged off the sweat, vomit and faeces from his body. She also had to shampoo out the muck, knots and flies which had accumulated in his hair, while she'd been gone. She even had to give him a second bath, just to rinse the first lot of mucky bath water off, and the entire thing took just over one and a half hours to finish. Leela knew it was a dirty job, but somebody had to do it, and unfortunately for her....

After towelling him dry, she put him to sleep, and gave him an aspirin for his headache. However, things didn't seem to be getting better, and Fry awoke in a sweat and started moaning out unintelligible words, which worried her. She had to seek medical help, so she called the ambulance to come and take Fry to the hospital, and sat with him until they arrived.

Leela went to the hospital with Fry, just to give the receptionist his details, and make sure he had safely been seen by a doctor that knew what she was talking about. After she was satisfied that her expectations were in order, she finally left his side.

She then returned to Harry, via the NNY tube system, to the small apartment of their own that they'd found, just to settle into for the time being. Although her new man wanted to get away from all their past life, Leela felt she had to remain close by, just in case Alison needed to spend some time with her father as she was growing up.

She always knew that she couldn't play mother to Fry forever, and one day, he would have to pick himself up, pull his socks up, and look after himself. Now was as good a time as any to start, or else he would never learn. Besides, she couldn't sacrifice the happiness of the man whom she now loved deeply, and that loved her just as much in return, for the other man who had ruined both hers and Alison's lives. She also had an exquisite utopia lying not far away in her future, instead of a deeply depressing and gloomy drudgery that would have been her life with Fry. Despite her worries about Fry's health, she had new feelings inside that she was finally getting somewhere... somewhere glorious, somewhere that was right for her; somewhere where she really belonged.

Chapter 7 - The Remedy (Final Chapter)

After about a month, Leela decided to return to the hospital to see how Fry was getting on. Walking through the ward, towards his bed, she first noticed that Fry seemed much better than when she last saw him. He was sitting up comfortably against his pillow, with what looked like the most amazing ear to ear grin on his dorky little face.

As she walked closer, he finally caught sight of her. "Hey Leela, great to see you!" he called over to her. He was in a very happy mood indeed. "I've got some cool news for you, Leela. Sit down next to me and I'll tell you."

"Well, what is this cool news?" she eagerly enquired, as she sat on the edge of his bed to listen to him. She seemed to have the strangest feeling that he somehow had a real big surprise to tell her.

"You're in luck, you really don't have to take care of me anymore, as I've found somebody else!" he blurted out chirpily.

"In just one month... that was quick!" she exclaimed. "Who is it... a nurse, or someone you met here, at the hospital?"

"Nope... go on, guess again," he urged her, wagging one of his hands around, for her to continue.

"Gimme a clue... is it somebody I know?"

"Yep... in fact somebody we've both known for a very long time." Fry had given her one of the best clues she could possibly have gotten from him, but she seemed to be slacking in her detective work.

The guessing cyclops tried desperately to think of any females that they'd both known for a very long time. The only one which came to mind, was... "Amy...! You're dating Amy?" Her question came out loud, adding a surprised look on her face, as if she'd seen a ghost from the past.

Fry broke out in laughter, as he'd never gotten one over Leela before. "Wrong again," he laughed out loud, still urging her to carry on guessing.

Leela, though, was fed up and wanted to know now. She began sulking, and huffed out, "Ohhhh... I give up... I'm sick of guessing."

Fry finally decided that he ought to show her the dozen red roses that his lover had sent to him, as there was a card on the flowers that could give her another clue. "Read the message of love on the card, Leela."

She searched deep into the red blooms, when she at last found a tiny little heart-shaped card inside, hardly big enough to write a love message. It just about managed to fit the little limerick squashed on the inside of it. It read:

There was once a cutie named Fry,
Who married a witch with one eye.
His wife has now gone,
For his life was a con,
But waiting in line, here am I.

As Leela read the card that Fry's secret love had sent to him, his sweetheart seemed to be becoming more and more of a mystery to the cyclops with every clue. Mind you, she felt a sudden anger for whoever it was, as that person had called her a "witch"!

Just as she sat there, still totally confused, scratching her head, and trying to play Sherlock Holmes to find Fry's new love, she began to hear the clanging of metal shoes on the vinyl floor from behind her. She knew who had arrived, even before she'd turned to look around.

"Hi, Fry," announced the cheerful robot. "Have you told her yet? Hey, have you, have you?" asked the enthusiastic tin can.

"Not yet, Bender... but now you're here...." Fry turned his head, from facing the robot, back to looking into Leela's giant eye. "Leela, you don't need to wait any longer." He embraced the shiny metal robot and kissed him on what were his lips, confirming to her that this was his one true love.

"I bought you a box of chocolates, Red, and I've also written you another love limerick," Bender affectionately told his love.

"I'll read it later," replied Fry. "But for now, come and sit by me, and we can snuggle and cuddle up close."

Fry then turned, to look at the now shocked Leela again, attempting to explain his new relationship to her. "You first put the idea into my head months ago, during one of our marriage fights, when you screamed at me that I was so close to Bender that I should marry him. I'm afraid that the quote simply stuck into my head, as we both just got closer and closer."

Her eye almost popped out, as she gawked at the two robosexual studs, although it wasn't altogether that unusual, as they had always being quite friendly with each other since she'd known them.

As Bender stuck his arm around Fry, to squeeze his lover's body ever closer to his own, he had to make a stand, not just for himself, but for all machines in the 31st century. "What, are you prejudiced against robosexuals or something?"

"Not prejudiced, just wondering how you do it without a wiener, that's all," she replied.

Bender and Fry weren't going to tell Leela their biggest secret, but they did have another big secret to tell, and since she was here....

As they both grinned at each other, Fry suddenly pulled his hidden hand from under Bender's shiny metal butt. "Look what Bender got for me, Leela."

He shook his left hand, straight in front of her massive eye, so she couldn't miss the large diamond ring which was sitting where his previous wedding ring had been. She wondered why she hadn't noticed it before.

Bender looked extremely proud of himself. "I stole it myself... from our local jewellers!"

As the two lovers warmly embraced, the stunned cyclops looked on, bemused, deciding to make a quiet exit and leave them to it.

The End