Delicious Surprise, Part 10
See part one for disclaimers!
Lyrics to "Where It's At", written by Beck, performed by Beck, used without permission. Once again, very brief, and no rights intentionally smooshed in the using!
This chapter focuses a bit more on Kif and Amy, whom I've been ignoring a little bit.
"Recently widowed?" Bender covered his surprise at Angelyne's news by coughing and shifting position. "Huh... Shame about Flexo. What happened?"
"We were off on a second honeymoon in the Steel Jungle of Fram 22. We were so happy, bending and laughing. Until that pile of girders just fell out of the sky," Angelyne sobbed. "All they found was his goatee!"
"Aww... there there... shuddup," Bender urged. Angelyne mopped away her oily tears and gave Bender a sad look.
"What are you doing here, anyway?"
"Eh." He leaned against a pillar, trying to look cool. "I'm leading an important rescue effort. I have to dig through four layers of concrete and get - uh - Chester A. Arthur's head!"
"How brave of you!"
"Yeah, that's what I said. Yeah." He stuck a cigar into his intake tray and inhaled. "I was wounded in combat once! This bomb blew up in my compartment."
She crossed her arms. "You told me you got that while saving a bunch of robo-nuns from some terrorist biker rapists!"
"Uh! Yes! But they put the bomb in there! Dirty biker rapists...though they do make the sweetest creamhorns known to man-"
"Bender! Nibbler needs to go make!" Bender choked on his cigar as Lilah appeared from behind a pillar.
"Why don't ya walk him yourself, meatball?" he snapped.
She shook her head. "He's pulling the leash, at least whenever I try to lead him. Come on, I want to go to sleep."
He snorted. Angelyne smiled behind him as he took the leash.
"'Special mission'?" she repeated sardonically, as Lilah disappeared back into the Hall of Famous Heads. "You've got something to tell me."
"Uh-yeah," he stalled, as Nibbler pulled him toward a too-inviting plastic tree in the display. "The real truth is... I'm an incredibly wealthy slave trader! I'm putting this thing on the market." His eyes narrowed. "The girl goes the first thing after I get out of here."
Angelyne smiled. "Why don't we walk awhile and see if that story comes loose?" They strolled away, Bender still unsure of what exactly to say.
Back in the Hall, Lilah curled up on a bench. The day's events had exhausted her to the point of sleep. As she drifted off, a faint scratching sounded by her ear.
She frowned, fairly sure that all of the heads behind her had been asleep for awhile. She opened a cautious eye and let out a shriek at the watery reflection staring back at her.
Her half-sister, who had been curled up in a ball, sprang out of the shelf, splaying across the floor on all fours. "Uh-I'm not here! It's a hologram!"
Lilah snorted. "I'm not stupid! What are you doing here, you're supposed to be with Kif and Amy!"
Dania shook her head. "I haven't been home all day. I followed you here!" Her tone was filled with pride.
Lilah groaned. "They're going to kill me!"
"No kidding! Marco told me not to go, but when you passed by our place I knew I didn't want to be stuck there with him and the dumb robo-sitter! I knew whatever you and Uncle Bender were doing, it had to be way more fun. So I just tracked you here." She tried to crack her knuckles, but, naturally, it made no sound. "Used my junior field scout kit!"
Lilah laughed. "Oh, brother. Well, what do you think?"
She shrugged. "Meh. Better than watching The Happy Little Elves 3000."
"Ugh! You know how Kif is!" Lilah protested. "He's going to start hyperventilating. My mom's already got to be going crazy wondering where we are."
"Lilah, cool it! This is a total adventure!"
Lilah groaned once more. Dania combined, in one being, the enthusiasm of her adoptive mother and the recklessness of her natural mother. At this point Lilah was surprised that her parents weren't keeping the girl under permanent lock and key in a negative zone.
"Well, what do you suggest we do now?"
Dania sat down at the foot of the Professor's jar. "We could get him to tell us a story."
Within his jar, the Professor snorted. "Huh!? Damnit, keep quiet!"
"Sorry, Professor," Lilah said.
"Yeah, sorry, Gramps." She muttered sarcastically.
"Gramps?!" he glared into his dim surroundings; even to the professor, Dania was impossible to forget. "Who let the squishy one out of her cage?"
Dania rolled her eye at the old man's reaction.
"I think she picked the lock," remarked Lilah smartly.
Dania tried to hit her, but her liquidy exoskeleton didn't provide much punch.
"Hmm...Professor, maybe a story will put us in the mood for sleeping," Lilah offered, while Dania rubbed her hand.
"I'm too old for a story!" Dania cried out. "I'm five years older than you!"
"Yeah, but if we count from when you crawled back onto land, you're only two!" taunted Lilah. Dania blushed, her entire face turning clear with embarrassment.
"Bah! I'm not your Mother Goose! The tests proved conclusively that I have no gosling DNA!" the Professor cut in.
"Great," Lilah groaned. "So what are we going to do now? It's almost morning!"
"Ya want a story, kids?" Bender's voice rang through the museum, as Nibbler forcefully pulled him down the Hall of Heads. The creature finally came to a stop, knocking Bender and Angelyne together with a metallic thud.
"Damn!" Bender muttered. Swiveling toward the kids, he said. "Yeah, I got a story for you. One that involves yer folks, so it should shut ya up faster than a Rouffie Colonic!" He leaned in conspiratorially. "An' it all started when Lilah's folks came back from their honeymoon..."
Leela gave her apartment one last check before picking up a glowing stick of "Seal-O-Matic". She sealed the cardboard box, astonished that her entire life to this point fit inside.
Fry emerged from her bathroom. "Shower's clean." He wiped his bare hands together, indicating that he had done as thorough a job as possible.
"Thank you." She kissed his cheek. "I'm ready to go!"
He eyed the box warily. "That's all?"
"Bender already took Nibbler and his box downstairs," she reminded him.
Fry nodded. "I know." He wiggled his brows suggestively as he dipped his wife backward. "Nothing's here but us!"
"Fry, this is nice..."
"But this isn't going to be my apartment for much longer..."
"But it's still your apartment right now."
She paused. "You know...for another ten minutes, it is..."
A camera clicked.
Leela curled up in an oversized armchair, her hand lazily combing through Nibbler's fur. The move to Robot Arms hadn't taken very long, and, with the rest of her day off to waste, she wondered in silence if it would irk Fry too much if she slipped down to the gym.
No, she had promised to wait for Fry and Bender to return from the store with some supplies before doing anything else. Fry had worn himself out trying to clean the apartment for her, and she appreciated his efforts. He deserved a little break.
So did she.
Her eye lazily scanning the room, Leela noticed Fry's video game system, sitting idle beneath the TV stand. She noticed that the game in the deck was new, possibly purchased by one of their friends as a wedding gift. Crap! Thank you-notes; another task to avoid. She quietly picked up the controls and turned on the machine. It let out a trumpeting noise, and she swiftly turned the volume down, as Nibbler had fallen to sleep. A series of little blue and green three-dimensional planes began to fly down from the top of the screen, forming a stationary line above a white ship at the bottom. Leela realized quickly that the bigger white plane was her "guy", as Fry had termed it, and that the planes at the top were the enemy.
She made one move to the right and her plane exploded instantaneously under a hail of green bullets.
"Crud!" Leela muttered, seizing the joystick. She had defeated many a flight simulator before, and this scrap of metal wasn't about to take her down. Glaring at the screen, she grimaced in concentration as the ships reappeared.
"Darn!" she cried as her vessel imploded again, disturbing Nibbler's sleep by leaping to a standing position. The little creature looked insulted, but Leela was transfixed. "Sorry, Nibbler; mommy's got a war to win!"
Two hours later, Leela realized that she had managed to advance to the second level, but she still had no clue why pressing the "y" button caused her plane to self-destruct. The manual, badly translated from Martian as it was, at least told her how to do a barrel roll. When she found herself tempted to call Amy for a translation, she dropped the controls and shut the unit off.
At that moment, the door opened, admitting a stumbling Fry and Bender, who had his metallic arm wrapped around a hookbot.
"What's going on?!" Leela demanded.
"Hey, Leelahs! Look! Bender finally found thomone!"
"And I can be your someone, too, for fifty bucks an hour!" the hookbot announced.
"Hush, my lady love," Bender soothed. "Leela, Fry still sucks at holding his liquor. Here ya go!" He tossed a limp Fry into his wife's arms.
Fry smiled blearily at his wife, then belched a cloud of Olde Fortran in her general direction. "What did you do to him?!" Leela cried out.
"Ey, that drinkin' contest ain't my idea!"
"Just try to keep it down in here!" she snapped, glowering at Bender.
Bender shrugged and turned to the Hookbot. "You heard her; keep the .WAVS down when we interface...ALL NIGHT, baby!"
Leela snorted at Bender's tone as she dragged Fry into their bedroom, slamming the door behind her.
An hour later, Fry came awake. "Uggggh, my head."
Leela pressed a cool, damp sponge to Fry's forehead. "Next time, don't try to drink Bender under the table."
"But it tasted so good! Like antifreeze, only with pineapple in it."
"Fry, drinking so much isn't good for anyone. I know your friendship with Bender is very important to you, but I think we should start seeing less of him, for our own good."
Fry tried to say something, but he rolled away from her, groping for the trash can.
You always wanted someone to take care of, Leela, she reminded herself, as she went in search of a mop.
"WHERE IT'S AT!!"
Leela jumped awake at the sudden blast of music.
"I GOT TWO TURNTABLES AND A MICROPHONE!!"
Leela staggered out of her room, not surprised to notice that Bender was sitting on the couch, grooving happily to the music with robot friends. The sight of Bender's bouncing around was only slightly more uproarious than the fact that he was wearing a large, leopard-print hat. Glaring, she slammed her hand down on the stereo system's OFF button.
"Who the h-" Bender began, but then saw Leela standing in the doorway. The male robots in the assembly hooted appreciatively.
"Hey, Bender, who's the sexy alien?"
"I'm not an alien!" Leela snapped, then blinked in chagrin. "Uh - I've been an American citizen all of my life!"
"Leela, you're wreckin' my flow! Step offa my case, biatch!" Bender intoned.
Leela, seizing Bender by the collar, snarled, "Who are you calling a 'biatch'?!"
"Uh-noonemamsorrymam!" he sputtered.
"Party's over!" she declared, "Everyone out!"
The assembled robots whined, but followed her orders, parading out of the opened door. "If you ever need a good time-" the final hookbot began.
"Not in this lifetime!" Leela closed the door behind her. "Bender!" she shouted.
"Fry never had a problem with my parties!" Bender complained, seeming not only annoyed, but hurt.
"Fry is passed out on our bed! And I'm not Fry; you'll just have to understand that I'm his wife, and until we find a place of our own, you'll have to put up with the two of us."
"Leela! Where're you? I want a glass of water, and my pants are too tight!"
Leela glared at Bender. "We'll finish this in the morning!"
"Oh yeah? Well, I ain't gonna be here in the morning!"
"Bender, you've run away three times before; you always go to the exact same place every time!"
"Yeah! I'll just look for you in Elzar's dumpster!"
The woman turned on her heel and angrily sashayed back into her room, leaving Bender alone to plot his escape.
"But I don't know where he could've gone!" Fry protested, staring out of a window at the top floor of Apartment 3D.
Leela squirmed guiltily. "Bender's fine, Fry. You know he likes to do this sometimes, just to keep us on our toes."
Fry kicked at the leg of the piano. "Yeah," he sighed. "I'm sorry I drank too much last night, but Bender said he felt bad because we didn't do the bachelor party thing before I got married..."
"You don't have to explain, Fry. Bender's just a bad influence."
"He's my best friend, and he's saved us a bunch of times."
"Ahh, a first spat between newlyweds!" enthused their bouffant-haired real estate agent, which swept into the room with such suddenness that they leapt in response.
"Sorry," Leela said, smiling. "How much is this unit going for?"
"Well, I can get it for you at around a thousand a month."
"A thousand a month?!" gasped Fry.
"That's a reasonable price, Fry, especially in this market."
"I know, but everything's in black and white!"
"The previous owners were very old-fashioned," noted the broker. Fry frowned at the walls.
"But they're made out of plasterboard." He leaned against one and the fašade collapsed, revealing a redheaded robot and her familiar-looking husband lying in their twin beds nearby.
"Looo-cy! Did you try to sell the apartment again?"
"But Ricky!" whined the redhead. "You said I needed to make my own money to get an outfit for the new expo."
"Ai-Yi-yi! Than you can no be in the act!"
The Redheaded robot's eyes suddenly glowed a malevolent black. "Destroy!!" she cried, a fist shooting out from beneath the covers...and knocking the pompadoured head right off of the other robot.
Leela groaned to herself as she crossed another ad off of the list. "That was the fifth place this week that's worse than Robot Arms!"
Fry plucked a twig from his hair. "Hey, the tree people were pretty cool!"
"Yes," Leela nodded. "But they seemed awfully eager to move into Central Park."
Fry's shoulders slumped as he stuffed his hands dejectedly into his pockets. "Maybe we can check out the West Side again."
Leela sighed. "We might just have to stay at Robot Arms, Fry. Thanks to the fact that people are living longer than ever, it's almost impossible to get a good place." Fry's expression turned pathetic, and she added, "Well, would you want to die if you had a rent-controlled apartment?"
"Good point." Fry slouched dispiritedly on the park bench. He added unhappily, "I don't wanna be Bender's live-in for the rest of my life."
Leela's expression dimmed. "I don't want to, either, but at this point, what choice do we have? They wouldn't even give a break to ME, and I saved New New York." Her eye had focused on a digital billboard, in which a very happy-looking Leela plugged Grandma's Regurgitated Infant Meals. Her sad, longing expression was disrupted by a beep from her communicator. "We're late! We have to get to Elzar's Too for Amy's graduation dinner!"
Fry groaned. "What's wrong with the original Elzar's?"
Leela followed him to the hovercar. "You know the Wongs. They love the newest, brightest things."
"Do you think the chef there washes his hands?" Fry asked as he slipped into place beside her.
"It's run by Elzar's cousin's clone. I'm guessing no," Leela replied pertly, revving the engine.
Kif was nervous that night. More nervous than usual, which meant that he was all but vibrating in his seat. The Wongs seemed surprisingly tolerant of Leela and Fry's presence at the table, but after all, they were very impressed by Amy's achievement.
"We have big announcement," said Inez over a round of drinks. "Our Amy get job offer to be big time engineer with Mom's when she graduate!"
"Wait; Amy told us that she's planning to stay with the Professor. He needs her, right, Fry?" Leela asked.
"Mgmph?" Fry managed, around a mouthful of food.
"What my husband's trying to say is: we love Amy, and without her we wouldn't have a working delivery system."
"I - uh - er - have an announcement of my own..." Kif began.
"Hah! Our Amy be success now! She no need your stinky company," Leo retorted.
Leela sighed. "It's really up to Amy, you know."
All eyes fell on Amy, who responded by frantically drinking down her cocktail.
"Amy, we work hard to get you job offer. You no disgrace family by working with tiny little stupid company, right?" Leo asked.
"This tiny, stupid company needs you, Amy!" Leela pleaded.
"Yeah, no one else knows how to make the engine go 'vroom!'" Fry added.
"So, what's your decision?"
"Yeah, what you decide?"
"...It's very important..." Kif said timidly.
Amy, her eyes darting back and forth, opened her mouth to speak.
And her voice was drowned out by the clatter of a large plate hitting the center of the table.
"Bam!" Elzar II shouted. "We got your super-sized lobster fer six. Our wine guy'll be around in a minute." He bent low and whispered in Leo's ear. "And I didn't have the bus boy spit in the food like usual. Only primo stuff for the Wong family. I tell ya, I spit in it personally!"
Leo nodded, but his full attention remained on Amy, who was in the process of cracking off a large claw for herself.
"You still have question here, Amy," Leo pointed out. Amy once more opened her mouth, only to be interrupted by the appearance of the wine steward.
"Hey, what's yer pleasure? I got four gallons of eu de merlot ready ta squirt!" The server indicated the tanks upon his back and the hose attached to his wrist.
"Bender!" cried Leela.
"Oh damnit!!" he blurted, glaring at Leela, "Why don't ya just eat with the rest of us poor slobs at McGobbles?!"
"I wanted to, but they say I'm too old for the Sappy Meal," Fry complained.
"I can't believe you ran away to be a waiter!" Leela laughed.
Bender frowned at his family. "Yeah, so what?! Food's always been good to me, unlike you jerks!"
"I don't get it," Fry remarked. "What did Leela do?"
"She kicked me out!"
"I did not! He got you drunk and then tried to hold a party until all hours. I was trying to get some sleep!"
"She said she couldn't wait to move out!"
"He called me a ho!"
"I called ya a biatch, Blinky!"
"...It's very important..." Kif repeated.
Fry stood up, pushing himself away from the table. "That's it! I don't want to be dragged into this! Leela, I love you. Bender, you're my best friend. If I remember right, you used to like each other."
He strode away.
Leela and Bender stood awkwardly, shamefaced at their actions. The Wongs, unconcerned, continued to badger Amy.
"Mom give you office with window!" enthused Inez.
Amy stared at her salad. "Uh, this is really good. What is it, Mars arugula?"
Kif sighed, carefully returning the velvet box he had been clutching the entire time to his waist pocket.
Leela glanced blearily at the clock. It was four in the morning, and she still couldn't advance past the second level.
She glanced over her shoulder, into the bedroom and at the curled, sleeping form of Fry. Last night marked the first time since their marriage that they hadn't sought the comfort of each other's embrace. Leela took in Fry's boxer shorts and her get-up, which consisted of a BlernsBall T-shirt and a pair of panties, and realized they were well past the comfort zone. Last night also marked the first night she hadn't tried to dress up for Fry's benefit. Leela stood, staggering toward the bedroom for some misbegotten sleep, when she remembered why the time was so significant.
"Fry!! Amy's graduating today, we need to get up!" He continued to snore. She stepped over the threshold, reached down and shook him. "Fry?!"
"Wah?!" His eyes shot open.
"Amy's graduating! Today!"
"Guh; can't she graduate tomorrow?!"
Leela rolled her eye. "Your suit's already laid out."
Fry rose, grumbling, and stumbled to the bathroom. Leela busied herself by feeding Nibbler and setting out her formal suit.
When Fry emerged, clean-shaven, Leela gave him a quick peck on the lips. "Change your underwear, dear."
She shrugged. "It sounded right." She strolled off to the shower. "Hope you left me enough hot water."
Fry nodded, rubbing his lips and smiling at Leela as she left. No one had warned him that the small stuff in marriage would be this delightful.
When they were dressed and ready to leave, a knock sounded at the door. To their surprise, a bleary-eyed Bender stood on their steps.
"What-" Fry began.
"Shove it, meatwad," Bender said tiredly. "I just spent two hours on a park bench." He scratched his metallic rear. "I ain't as young as I used to be."
"We're going to Amy's graduation. You want to come?"
"Ya know, maybe I could re-connect with my old buddies from Robot House..."
Leela's smile seemed to mend that last rift between the old friends. Fry was once again awe-stricken by the way his friends could be ready to kill one another one moment, then on civil speaking terms the next.
Mars was as it had always been; a steamy, plant-heavy atmosphere. The sky was clear, and therefore graduation was held outside. As Fry and Leela were seated, Leela was reminded of her dealings with the Dean, and fervently hoped to avoid him.
"Y'know, I wonder how Guenter's doing in business school..."
Leela looked through her digital program. "I think the Professor said something about him graduating soon. He's doing very well."
"Oh, right." Fry thought for a moment. "I wasn't any good at this stuff, but, ya know, I hope our kid is."
Leela's expression warmed; she and Fry had only discussed children in passing. "Our kids are going to be great."
Fry nodded. "We're gonna give them the best of everything...Sometime soon."
Her smile dimmed. "Soon." A silence passed between them before she turned to him. "When?"
Fry coughed; suddenly, the air was very warm. "Uh-sometime?"
She sighed. "I know you don't want a baby right away, Fry, but...you know I want to have kids."
He nodded earnestly. "How many?"
Fry had never envisioned himself as a parent, but he swallowed and bravely nodded. "Okay." He paused. "Remember how many kids you and Kif had?"
"Technically, but they're really Amy's, remember?"
"Yeah... there were a whole lot of them, right?"
"You don't think Kif and Amy'll be able to handle them all, do you?"
Leela paused; this option had never occurred to her, even though it had been in the back of her mind that, even after twenty years, Amy wouldn't be mature enough to handle raising so many kids. Kif she was sure of; he, after all, had experience raising Zapp. How many babies had there been; fifteen? Twenty? How old would they be when they came onto land? The fact that they had nineteen years ahead of them to figure things out didn't seem a comfort.
The approach of Leo and Inez Wong interrupted Leela's brooding thoughts. "One-eye, we have proposition for you," Inez said.
"Business proposition, not indecent proposal," Leo continued.
"I'm listening," Leela said coolly.
"You let Amy take job with Mom," Inez said, "And we get you nice place on West Side!"
"There fewer gang wars there. Killings down twenty per cent!"
Leela shook her head. "Sorry, no."
Inez frowned. "You holding Amy back from big time opportunity! What kind of bad boss are you?"
Leela shook her head. "I'm not her boss." She pointed to the Professor, who was drooling and snoring nearby. "He is."
Inez frowned. "You got someone I can talk to with half brain?"
A fanfare interrupted their conversation, and the Wongs seated themselves to Leela and Fry's left. Leela turned on her wrist communicator, beaming a feed back to the Planet Express building. Students were allowed eight guests apiece, and Amy had chosen other friends instead of Hermes and Zoidberg.
Bender's snickering disrupted the lovely strains of "Pomp and Circumstance". A glance at her feet confirmed that Bender had crawled his way to the ceremony.
Sitting up, he laughed beneath his breath to Fry, "I pulled another prank on th' Dean!"
"What is it this time?" Fry wondered.
Fry stifled his laughter, and Leela groaned; on the stage stood Dean Vernon: in full clown makeup, with a rainbow-colored fright wig on his head.
Bender's chortling came to a stop as the Dean stood, his expression frozen, at the end of the aisle.
"Hey! He ain't screamin'! The kit promised screaming!" Bender muttered, glaring at his Li'l HAL Prank-Playin' Kit. "Whatta gyp!"
"I heard he's on Repressitol now," Leela whispered. "No wonder he looks so peaceful."
The Dean's eyebrow, however, was twitching out two words in Morse code.
"R. O. B. O. T. H. O. U. S. E. !."
"Heh Heh!" Bender crowed, leaning backward in his chair. "I still got it."
The graduates slowly filed up to the stage, and the valedictorian gave his speech. This was interminably boring to Fry, who tried with all of his might to stay awake. Leela's prodding brought him back to consciousness just as he drifted off the final time.
He didn't need to be kept awake, however, when the keynote speaker stepped up to the podium. Zapp Brannigan, wearing a chestful of medals and his best dress uniform, began his speech by declaring that the entire class was the hope of the future.
"A future which will pale in comparison to the awesome power of one the Zappilicious one!"
Kif rushed over to his seat beside Leela, climbing up on it and standing in order to see. "Did I miss much?"
"Kif! How did you manage to get away from Zapp?" Leela asked.
Kif pointed to Zapp's gloved hands. "He decided to write his speech on his hands. He said I was 'unnecessary'." He caught Amy's gaze and waved to her.
"...And that's how I defeated the entire Planet of Doo..." Zapp squinted at the words on his hand. "Doo-" He frowned, then shouted to the audience. "Kif, what is this supposed to say?!"
Kif smacked his forehead in agitation.
Zapp switched hands, "I would also like to announce my candidacy for Earth President. With the Head of President Nixon now residing full-time in Robot Hell, I believe that I could be exten-tor- Taco shells, Milk, cheese." Zapp's eyes followed the track of words down his wrist, then concluded, grinning widely for the press, "No luscious, hotttttt" - he dragged the 't' - "Lady can resist the Presidential Lovnasium. It's Head-Of-Clinton Approved!"
Leela fumed while Zapp left the podium.
"Don't worry; he won't be elected," Fry soothed.
"Fry, Americans love good-looking presidential timber. That's how Dan Quayle won in 2030!"
"So you say," shrugged Bender. "I voted for him because of his good standing with the National Potatoe Council! And his support of the national spelling bee agreed with my processor."
Leela decided to focus on the ceremony. This was Amy's day, after all, and a day for all of the other graduates. Amy would receive her diploma right in the middle of the ceremony, between Daar Williams and S84 Xrapolies. When Dean Vernon called out "Amaryllis Wong," Leela and Fry shot a look to Leo and Inez.
Leo shrugged. "Oh, we into doobs big time when Amy was born."
"You remember when she just a baby? You kept trying to smoke her rattle!"
Leo sniffled. "Those good times."
When Amy tossed her mortarboard into the air, the entire crew shouted their happiness along with her. Naturally, she rushed over to Kif and began excitedly chattering away to him. Everyone seemed moved, except for Professor Farnsworth.
Who awoke with a snort. "Oh my. Did I miss anything?"
Back at Robot Arms, a party was in full swing. Amy's first real decision as an adult had been against the formal party that her parents had wanted. Instead, she sipped homemade punch while dancing with Kif.
"I'm having a wonderful time," Kif said
Amy held him tightly. "Me too!" She smiled. "Since we're here, Kif, I've gotta tell you some stuff."
"Amy, how wonderful! I have something to tell you, too!"
"Oh, me first!" she said, excitement in her voice. "I'm not taking either job."
Kif's face fell. "Oh. What are you planning on doing?"
"That's the coolest part! I'm gonna bum around the galaxy for a year! You know, go to the French Planet, go to the Chocolate Galaxy, stay on the Lipo Star.."
Kif's disappointment was obvious. "Oh..."
"Kif, you look sad!" She held him more tightly. "We're gonna see each other a lot more this way."
"I...suppose," Kif sighed. The ring in his pocket felt very heavy.
Watching this, Fry couldn't grasp why Kif seemed so upset. A knock at the door interrupted his thoughts. To his surprise, it was their landlord.
"You lookin' for a new apartment?" he asked.
Fry blinked. "How did you know?"
"Your owner said somethin' about emancipatin' you. Said he wanted ya to have the new suite that just opened up."
Four seconds later, Leela and Fry opened a door and caught an eyeful of their new place.
Leela gasped softly; this place was as beautiful as Fry's old one, but much bigger. There was an extra bedroom, a full kitchen, and a multipurpose room. In short, it was exactly what they needed.
"How much extra a month?" Fry asked.
"Nothin'." He bobbed his head toward Leela. "I'm waivin' it, if yer lady friend does a commercial for me. I'll even lease it to the two of you, considerin' that she's who she is."
"I'll do it!" Leela enthused.
"Are you sure?"
She wrapped her arms around Fry's neck. "This is everything I ever wanted, Fry!"
Fry grinned. "I guess we'll take it."
The twosome was left alone in their new apartment. They went from room to room, laughing deliriously. The sudden appearance of Bender quieted them.
"You gonna forgive me now?" Bender asked.
Fry and Leela glanced at each other, then at him. "Guess we'll have to."
"Yeah; I'll be takin' the closet, if you don't mind."
"What's wrong? I thought you had a job..." Leela said.
"Yeah, well..." Bender trailed off. "I got fired fer makin' a shrine to Elzar II outta butter."
"Not again!" cried Leela.
"I can't help it," he sniffed.
"Guess we're stuck together...just..."
"No more loud parties, unless you invite us," Fry finished, and the maturity in his voice surprised Leela.
"Eh, fine," Bender said. "The real action's out on the street, anyway."
It was a good enough promise for Fry and Leela. Everything in their little family was, for the moment, forgiven.
"...And I stuck to that promise," Bender finished.
"Oh yeah?! Why did we find you hanging from the chandelier when we got back from vacation, then?" Lilah asked.
"That's different! That was havin' a party behind your folk's back."
Dania said quietly, "Wait a minute; how could you know all of that stuff without being there?"
"Foolish squishy thing!" the Professor declared. "The satellite system I installed in Bender's head tells all!"
"Ooh..." Dania piped. "Cool! Can you get the Blernsball game on that?"
"Hey, I ain't no TV set!" Bender protested, backing away from the girl.
"Yeah, well, what're we gonna do for entertainment now?" Dania complained.
"We could try something called 'sleep'," Lilah announced.
"Nah! Bor-ring!" The girl's smile turned wicked. "Uncle Bender, tell us about Zapp!! Was he as crazy as they say?"
"Nah. Just stupid."
"Then how did things end up the way they did?"
"They just did, kid." Bender seemed contrite as he exchanged glances with Angelyne. "Go to sleep."
And they did.