Demons From the Past, Part 3
By Ralph Snart
Planet Express Building 4:30 PM
The delivery went perfectly, Fry and Amy got back on time and Fry had a few hours to get a nap before going to class to take his exam. Exiting the Planet Express ship, Fry and Amy saw Leela waiting in the hanger bay next to Fry's locker.
As Fry approached his locker, Leela stepped in front of him.
'Fry, I need to talk to you,' Leela said with her usual authoritative voice.
'Leela, I don't have time now, I have an exam tonight and I need to catch a couple of hours sleep before I go to class.'
Leela was taken aback by the coldness in his voice - so unlike Fry. She knew that she really hurt him badly in the past and that Fry had hit his limit. Realizing her approach was more aggressive than she meant, she softened her voice as she swallowed her pride.
'Fry, I really want... I really need to talk to you...'
Losing all composure, Fry started yelling at Leela, 'What do you want to talk to me about? How I'm a kid from the "stupid ages". How I'm not the man you want since I got rid of the worms? How I'm a fat sack of crap? That you can never love me? Leela - LEAVE ME ALONE! I'm trying to get over you, and I don't need you being kind and sweet after you haven't talked to me in six months. SIX MONTHS, Leela. You've torn my heart out for the last time. DAMMIT LEELA, I DESERVE BETTER! Tell me something: Why'd you flush my letter down the toilet? Do you know how I felt when I found it in the sewer? You never given me an apology or a reason for doing that.'
Leela stared ahead, her eye extra wide - utterly shocked by Fry's reaction. Everything Fry said was true. Some of her actions towards Fry were indefensible, and she knew it. Leela just turned away and rushed back to her office, slamming the door shut behind her, collapsing on the floor crying uncontrollably.
Outside, Fry got his stuff out of his locker, Amy by his side. 'Um, Fry, are you going to be OK?'
'Yeah, I'll be OK.' Taking a deep breath Fry stated, 'I'll take a spoonful of space honey before I take my exam. Don't worry. I'll see you at The Hip Joint tonight.'
'Flugh! I better! Good luck Fry.'
Fry left the building. Amy walked past Leela's office; she could hear Leela crying behind the closed door. The door wasn't locked, so Amy opened the door and walked in.
Leela was sitting on the floor, tears running down her face, her nose running, her eye puffy and red. Amy stared at the one-eyed, wide-hipped Amazon for several moments before saying, 'You deserved every damned thing he said.'
Leela was silent for several minutes except for her crying. She finally looked up and to face Amy. 'Perhaps. You're right, I deserved every word. and more. God, what've I done? Have I finally chased him away?'
Looking at Leela with contempt, Amy replied, 'Well flugh!' as if it were the most obvious thing in the world. "You've been doing that for three years. Congratulations! You finally did it! Now you can go find Sean and let him crap all over you again. You bitch and moan about men treating you badly, but that's the kind'a guy you chase. You got what you deserved, and I have no pity for you. You had Fry eating out of your hand! There was nothing he wouldn't do for you, but you treat him like crap every chance you get. You need help, Leela. professional help.'
With that, Amy turned on her heel, and walked out of Leela's office. Actually, Amy had much more to say to Leela, but she knew Leela's strength, martial arts skill, and tendency to cruise for a fight made her a dangerous adversary on a good day.
And this was not a good day.
LEELA'S OFFICE, 2 HOURS LATER
As Zoidberg scuttled past Leela's office, he hears soft sobbing from within. Peeking inside the door, he saw Leela hunkered down on the floor, appearing drained of life. Zoidberg noticed that something was wrong with her, but he just couldn't put a claw on it.
'What is wrong, Leela?'
'Dr. Zoidberg? You're talking to me? At least I haven't alienated you yet.'
'Talk to me, I'm a doctor, I can help you.'
'The only help that I need is finding a suicide booth,' Leela whispers.
Zoidberg, shaking his head, 'No, no suicide booth. Let's get off the floor and sit on the couch.'
Zoidberg knew that the deliveries had been made for the day, the Professor was probably asleep and Hermes had left for the day, so the Planet Express building would be empty; he and Leela would be alone and the couch would be much more comfortable for Leela.
Defeated, Leela did as Zoidberg suggest - she got up and walked from her office to the lobby's couch, laid on the couch and started babbling about the events of the day - the death-threat from Bender: The loud dressing-down from Fry: The lambasting from Amy.
'Everybody that I ever cared about is angry at me, and it's all my fault. I don't know what to do. I don't believe that I'll ever be able to friends with Bender or Amy again. And Fry... Fry...' Leela starts crying again.
Zoidberg looks at her with compassion, pulls a syringe with 5 mg of St. Joseph's Valium out of his bag and gives Leela an injection in her arm. Leela looks at Zoidberg with surprise before her eye closes and she goes to sleep.....
PLANET EXPRESS LOBBY, 11 PM
Leela awakens slowly, not sure where she's at. The events of the day come back to her as ghostly images. Bender, Amy, Fry, Zoidberg. She notices that a quilt is spread over her, she looks around and realizes that she is laying on the couch located in the Planet Express Lobby. Her vision blurry from crying, she sees Zoidberg sitting on the floor next to her.
'Ah, back to the land of the living, are we? Good. Now let's talk, why not?'
Leela continues to lay on her back, staring at the ceiling. Her mind numb, her body heavy and empty. The emptiest and saddest that she has ever been, even worse than when she found out that Sean was cheating on her, so many years ago.
'Dr. Zoidberg, can you find me a suicide booth?'
'What? And lose my only patient who's survived? Never!'
'I'm serious. I can't stand going on like this,' Leela said with her voice cracking.
'No, Leela,' Dr. Zoidberg said quietly. 'You will live. You need to talk, you do. So tell me, what wrong, is?'
Sighing deeply, Leela remembers parts of conversations during the day. 'Amy says I need professional help. I always have to be in control. I keep my weight within 5 pounds at all times, I work out in the gym every day, I pre-flight the Planet Express ship every day even though Amy can do it just as well as I can. I'm a control freak - I can't trust anybody to do anything. I yell at everybody... I have no life outside of Planet Express.' Looking at Zoidberg with desperation in her voice, Leela sobs, 'I don't know what to do!'
'Leela, I have help on the way. I'm friends with Dr. Phil McGraw's head - he'll be in my office tomorrow to help you. Hermes says that the company insurance covers it. Bender and I will take care of the deliveries. Relax, you'll get the help that you need.'
Leela looked at Zoidberg with her first smile in ten months. And in that smile was hope?