The Full Circle, Part 2
John and Rob created by Mitch
NOTE: some of Leela and Kim’s dialogue from the last chapter was mixed. This is what was intended:
Leela: Your standards were less superficial than mine, and if Ron is anything like Fry, I’d say we both did well in the end.
Kim: I‘m still a little surprised, though. He was always flirting with hotties.
Leela: And you’re surprised he likes you?
Kim: I’m as vain as the next girl, but I have a bubble butt and my legs are a little thick…
Kim: Oh, sorry, Captain.
Sorry for any confusion.
About a half-hour after the situation began, Leela was on the bridge using the Planet Express ship's instruments to determine exactly what kind of field they were trapped in. So far, she found very little information and even less of it was useful. Whatever this field was made of, it was related to the time-manipulating chronotrons that she and her friends had run into a couple of times before, but not similar enough to help them find a way out of it.
Just as Leela was thinking about the situation, looking out the window, she saw another ship appearing in front of them. It was of an unknown design, but it reminded Leela of the ship Kim and Ron were found on, only this one was much larger and a little more phallic. She was about to hail it when a message came over their receiver.
"This is the New Frontier to the…Planetary Express ship?" said a female voice over the speakers.
"Actually, it's 'Planet Express'," corrected Leela, "who are you?"
"Well, I just said my ship's name," said the voice, "I'm Joan. I'm asking permission to come aboard."
Leela was suspicious. Still, this mystery woman coming aboard was less risky than Leela having her own crew boarding the strange ship. From the looks of things, it was this Joan who was taking a risk in trusting them. Then again, despite getting their name wrong, she felt like Joan knew something that she wasn't telling…
"Okay," said Leela, "you can access our air lock and we'll meet you there."
Eventually, everyone gathered at the airlock. Leela already knew that the mystery ship had attached itself to it (and she threatened Bender so he wouldn't make a dirty joke about it in front of the kids). The outer door was already opened and the inner door soon opened and a woman entered the Planet Express ship.
She was fairly tall and had short blond hair, coming into points near her ears. Her green eyes were a noticeable feature as was her relaxed, but alert, stance. Her face carrying feminine prettiness and overall cuteness, almost made her seem younger. She wore an oversized black shirt and green cargo pants. There was some sort of small metal-plated animal sitting on her shoulder. She didn't seem dangerous, but she also seemed to have more to her than met the eye. She walked to her hosts. On further inspection, the animal on her shoulder was a cybernetic naked mole rat.
Another naked mole rat fan, thought Leela, at least Ron will have more company.
The woman paced in front of the lot of them like a drill instructor. She seemed curious of them, but not at all surprised to see a one-eyed mutant, a robot, two teens, and another mole rat on board.
Hmmm, thought Leela, Fry's the only one here whose appearance wouldn't raise attention.
"Wow," said the woman, "I finally get to see you all in the flesh, er, no offence, Bender."
"If none's given than none's taken," said Bender, but then he was surprised, "how'd you know my name?"
"The same way I know the lot of you. You're sort of all minor celebrities to my family," she said as she paused in front of Kim and Ron, "especially you two."
The woman then walked to Leela with a professional expression on her face.
"Captain Leela," she explained, "I'm Joan. Let's stick with just my first name. I know your situation: you're in a rift between times: where past, present, and future can meet."
"So," asked Leela, "where, or when, are you from?"
"Earth, from a time after Kim and Ron and long before your time."
"You mean," said a surprised Kim, "you're from…?"
"The kids' future, your past," explained Joan casually to Leela, "the 'present', relatively speaking. Oh, and this little guy is Rob. He can help fix our ships and we have the parts."
"Uh-huh," the mole rat chirped in a voice a little more coherent than Rufus.
"'Our ships'?" asked Leela, "you're stuck here too?"
"Those are the breaks. I got access of the details from this little adventure from Kim and Ron's return. That's how I know about you all, but I'm stuck as well. My ship is powered by a modified version of the pan-dimensional vortex inducer from Kim's time, but it's not working right. Plus, my computers went down, although I thought they were prepared for this. I guess you can't get in here without getting stuck, but I was prepared in case of that. I've got parts we'll need."
She looked at them all, noticing their mix of suspicion and puzzlement.
"Look," she said, "I suspect you don't quite trust me" the stranger who knows your situation and all. But, you can check my gear. Plus, I'm outnumbered, unarmed, and facing Kim Possible, Turanga Leela, and more! So, I'm at your mercy."
"Why am I 'and more'?" asked Fry.
"Same here," said Ron, "I have a name! It's not as well known as Kim's, but…"
"Well, I'm suspicious," interrupted Leela, wanting to focus on the situation, "but you're probably our only hope right now. Guys, what do you think?"
"Something tells me we should trust her," said Kim.
"If Kim says we trust her," said Ron, "I say we trust her!"
"And if Leela says we should give her a chance," said Fry, "I say we give her a chance!"
"Boy," said Bender, "you two are whipped!"
"[Whi-cha!]" agreed Rufus, making his best whip-crack impression.
"Now," said Joan, "we may need any available power source, so Kim's trilithium power cell, the PE ship's TV, and anything that can be spared will be an option."
Bender was worried.
Somewhere, deep in the bowels of the New Frontier, a figure emerged from a hidden compartment. The first step in her revenge had been taken. Soon, this being would make her presence known…if she could find her way out of this confusing area!
The next several hours had Leela, Rufus, and Rob alternating on fixing the dark matter engine. Joan was working on the pan-dimensional vortex inducer and hoped to lend some of its power to Kim's ship. Leela was turning in for the night during Rob's shift. Originally, she wouldn't have trusted this job to hair-less rodents, but so far, they were proving themselves, even working faster than she would have. They would have to do something about Kim and Joan's ships when they were done, though. Joan had explained that the longer they stayed, the more strain they put on the space-time continuum and Leela already knew from Professor Farnsworth that space and time were quite vulnerable. Still running on Earth time, the lighting on the ship had switched to "night". Leela headed to her room for a deserved night of sleep. After changing into her nightshirt, she sat on her bed, but still felt tense. They left Nibbler, her pet, on Earth, so she was feeling lonely. Just then, she heard a knock on the door. She already had an idea who it was.
Ron was in a guest room on the Planet Express ship, feeling both bored and lonely. He and Kim were going to hit that fancy restaurant they had started to go to every other week.
Now, he was in bed wearing oversized pajamas he borrowed from Fry. Rufus was sleeping on a dresser.
Then, the automatic door slid open. Ron saw a somewhat surprised Kim wearing Leela's pajamas, which were too big for her. Also, her hair was a bit messy.
She was so beautiful.
"Oh, sorry Ron," she said, sounding embarrassed, "I was going to knock. You got a minute?"
"Sure, K.P. Uh, is this about the three bucks I owe you?"
Kim walked over to his bed and sat close to him.
"You know I've been paying for dinner since that time," responded Kim, "I feel like I'm the one who owes you."
"For sticking with me, even when I'm difficult. I know I'm a tough leader at times. And…I'm being regretful about my past boyfriends. You were still there even when…"
"Kim, it's okay. It took me a while to get a good look at my own feelings for you. I mean, we're teenagers, and busy ones, and…"
Kim put a finger on Ron's lips.
"It's okay, Ron," she said softly, "I get it and I'm being too hard on myself. I'm just saying we still have lot of catching up to do. I do feel sort of tense, though."
This gave Ron an idea.
"Worry not, K.P. The Ron-man knows what you need."
"Crazy night, huh?" asked Fry, sitting on the edge of Leela's bed.
"Yeah," said Leela, "it's good to see the kids again, but I wish we could move the ships."
"I don't know," said Fry, "we could have some quality time together. We've been so busy. That's why I'm here…"
"Fry, are you going to ask if we can…?"
"No, you know I've learned to be patient with that," said Fry, "well, to a point. What I mean is, we get to have some time alone. That is, if you're okay with that."
"Well," said Leela, "there's one thing you could do to make me feel better…"
"Oh, Ron…Ron. Yes, yes! Ohhh!"
Kim weakly smiled. Ron really knew his stuff with this, although she knew some girls with misplaced doubts.
He sure knew how to massage a foot.
It must have been his big hands.
"Ron," Kim cooed, "you're the best."
"I know," said Ron slyly, "but my own feet are sore too. Think you can return the favor?"
Kim was a bit annoyed by that, but she loved him too much to turn him down.
"Sure," she said seductively, "just to show you how it's done."
Turanga Leela was in heaven.
Fry was giving Leela a backrub. She was partially afraid that he would use this to lead up to something but, so far, he was being considerate. She could tell he was enjoying it, though. She relaxed, planning to return the favor at some point.
"Hmmm, Fry…have you seen Bender lately?"
"From time to time," answered Fry, "I think he's hanging with Ron's mole rat during his breaks. I saw them access Joan's ship earlier. Why do you ask?"
"I starting to be concerned about Bender," said Leela, "we've been so busy with each other lately, I'm worried that he may be feeling left out."
"Why won't you let him help fix the engine?"
"First, we don't need to bend the engine. Second, he wouldn't be interested. Rufus has been a great help, though. We're getting closer to escaping all the time."
On the New Frontier, Bender walked through the hallway from the engine room with Rufus on his shoulder. Joan and Rob were taking over Rufus' shift, so the naked mole rat had a break.
"Lonely, huh, naked flesh bag?" Bender asked the mole rat.
"[Uh-huh]," admitted Rufus in his chirps, sounding sad.
"Yeah," said Bender, "with those other organ sacks playing 'lip-on-lip' with each other, acting on the urges of millions of years of evolution, we're on the sidelines. Alone together and forgotten among friends."
"[Not that bad.]"
"Oh, don't tell me that it's not that bad. It's that bad. Honest! And it's just us! Was Fry ever alone? Was Leela? Was Ron? Was Kim?"
"Whatever! Those are just details! And to top it off, every power source is on Joan's list of materials. I'm a power source! I'm just a spare battery to them! Let's show 'em! Let's duck out for a while!"
"Uh-huh! This is a big ship; there must be a lot of places we can go! They won't need us."
He then saw one of the New Frontier's computer terminals and got an idea.
"Hmmm. I guess the computers are back online. I could hack into the main computer from here, but I'll need some help. You in, skin bag?"
"Good. Now, no time for foreplay. I'll just interface with it and…"
As Bender said this, he attached a cord from the terminal to his head and vibrated violently. Everything was a blur until he found himself stopping suddenly. He then saw Rufus standing proudly on the terminal. A map of the ship was now on the screen.
"So," said a recovering Bender, "you unhooked me and found a feature to put the ship's specs on the screen?"
"I guess that works too. Now, let's see…here's a spot. I don't think they'd find us there."
"Oh, come on, it won't be for long! Joan will forget that silly order! And they'll miss us! Don't you wanna teach 'em that we're more than just sidekicks?"
The mystery figure was starting to notice it was no longer just her, Joan, and the cyber-mole rat on the New Frontier. There were others and soon she would face them.
She pitied them in a way.
To be continued...