Chapter 1: Revolution
“Sweet Zombie Jesus!” Professor Farnsworth yelled, clutching at the console that was hooked to the smell-o-scope and every other listening, observing, and detecting device he had in his vast collection of inventions, “They’re coming from everywhere! Fry!” the professor yelled turning to his distant Uncle who was sitting on the floor of the attic of the planet express building having just been jolted awake by his exclamation, “Get downstairs and tell them that every single robot in the city is converging on this point! Here! Take this report to them!”
Fry groaned and after a struggle stood up, grabbed his laser rifle and the printed out report and sprinted out the door, adjusting his poorly fitting body armor as he ran down the stairs of the Planet Express tower.
“Oh my…” the professor muttered, a frown creasing his brow, “We won’t be able to hold this place for much longer…”
Three Days Earlier
It was a lazy Monday afternoon and the Planet Express Crew was hard at work neglecting their actual work. So naturally the whole crew was clustered in front of the television watching the latest episode of ‘Everybody Loves Hypnotoad’.
“Wait,” Fry said raising an eyebrow and taking a sip of his Slurm, “Isn’t this a re-run?”
“No, this is a brand new episode, Fry.” Leela said “Can’t you see the ‘New Episode thing at the bottom?”
“Oh yeah,” Fry said, squinting at the TV, “I guess all these episodes all look the same to me…” He sat back with a shrug and took another slurp of his Slurm.
They watched the rest of the episode in silence, as the next episode in the Hypnotoad marathon started, Bender began emitting a high pitched whining sound and his eyes began to dart around wildly in his head. The crew stared as his limbs began making seemingly random twitching movements.
“Bender?” Leela asked standing up cautiously from the couch as the others inched away in fear, “What going on?”
“You’re *bzzzzzzzzz* going to want *1001101001001000100001110* to step away bzbzbzzzzzbzbbzbzzzz, big boots, something big is going down.”
The Robot’s head started spinning rapidly as he made random noises. Leela backed away as the spinning intensified and joined the rest of the crew in cowering behind the now overturned break room table. The robot began to violently vibrate bouncing up and down on the floor, and then, just as suddenly, went stiff as a board and thudded to the ground his eye-plate sliding shut.
“Well,” Fry said, walking to the robot’s side and giving him a little nudge with his foot, “That was anticlimactic…”
“I’ll say,” Leela said walking up beside Fry, “Bender is usually more of a drama queen than that. Anyway, we should inform the professor.”
The rest nodded and carried bender off to the professor’s lab.
“Good news everyone!” the professor said to Fry and Leela, the only two who stayed and waited, “My robot analysis equipment is working perfectly!”
“We figured that out, professor, since you’ve been scanning him with it for the last half-hour.” Leela said exasperatedly.
The professor grumbled, “Anyway,Horrible news everyone! The ro-”
“THE ROBOTS ARE ATTACKING!!” Hermes screamed as he ran into the lab.
“Eh-wha? How do you know that?” the professor said angrily putting his hands on his hips.
“I turned on da tv you senile old man!” Hermes said angrily, clicking on the tv in the lab.
“-OOOOOOOOOOOOOOMMMMMMMMED!!!!” Morbo finished yelling as the tv snapped on, “The puny humans on Earth are DOOOOOOMED!!”
Linda laughed, “That’s right Morbo, about thirty minutes ago, every humanoid robot on Earth began acting strangely and started attacking any humans within their reach!”
“Yes, Linda,” Mobro said barely able to contain his glee, “The Puny Humans suffered many casualties. Mom, the creator and manufacturer of the all of the robots has been unable to be reached for comment. We go to our now mostly robotic Hovercopter pilot, Jim, reporting from over Times Square!”
“Well Morbo,” Jim said in a mechanically accented voice, “I’m hovering over times square where DOOP troops and the NNY police are attempting to blast a path through the murderous robots filling the streets so they can get to MomCorp tower and shut this down. They don’t seem to be making much progress and are being beaten back. Uh, some of the robots in buildings at my level are eyeing me, and now they’re jumping on the copter. Linda I’ve just been informed that my last word are OH GOD STOP I’M ONE OF YOU!! I’M ONE OF YOU!! NOT AGAIIIIIINNNNNN!!” Jim’s chopper quickly spiraled to the ground and exploded amidst the robots.
Linda laughed, “Well viewers, we can hear noises outside the studio, so this will likely be the last broadcast of Channel √2 News. Any last words Morbo?”
The green alien stood up and leaned over the news desk, “YOU’RE ALL DOOOOOOOMMMMM-”
There was a loud crash from elsewhere in the studio and the transmission went to static, Hermes clicked the tv off.
The rest of the crew, which had trickled in during the tv broadcast, stood there in shock.
“Well,” the professor said breaking the silence, he went on to explain after the last Robot revolution triggered by Mom, he and Cubert had altered Bender’s programming so he would go into sleep mode if such a command was sent to him again. “So using Bender’s idling software, I was able to trace the signal back and it does indeed originate from MomCorp. But this time it only seems to be targeted at the humanoid robots and a few select others, all appliances should still function as programmed, but the rebelling ones are programmed to kill any human that gets in their way…”
Leela rubbed the back of her neck, “So, what do we do then? Do we leave? Stay and fight?”
“Stay and fight?” the professor laughed, “Oh my no, robots in NNY vastly outnumber the humans here, and there will be robots coming from Robot Hell as well, there will be millions of them! Way too many to fight off for any length of time. No, I dare say we will be leaving, everybody start packing the ship.”
Suddenly Leela’s Wristlojackimator crackled to life, “Not so fast Planet express crew and my bosomy blossom.” Said a cocky drawling voice emanating from the speakers.
Leela scowled, “How the hell did you get my number Zapp?” she asked, her voice tight with dislike.
“Doesn’t matter,” the 25 Star admiral replied dismissively, then under his breath “It totally wasn't because I was stalking you…”
“You’re violating my restraining order you jackass!” Leela yelled at him.
“Actually president Nixon just declared martial law so all restraining orders are off. Anyway, I’m not calling to woo you for once, I’m calling to tell you that the Planet Express building has been selected as one of several evacuation points for NNY, Kif informs me that you’re required by law to stay and protect it.”
“What!?” Fry cried out, “But I’m scared, I don’t wanna fight millions of robots so other people can get away, I wanna leave!!”
“Too bad cowardly wimp, you have to. Oh also we’re commandeering your ship, you can still fly it but under orders you are to use it to ferry people off earth up to the Nimbus and other DOOP ships waiting safely outside the orbit of Neptune.”
“What if we refuse?” Amy asked angrily, “you’re all the way out at Neptune you can’t make us do anything!”
“Then I’ll send Doop troops in and take the place by force, we can do this the hard way or the easy way, what it gonna be hot stuff?” he asked Leela.
The professor growled, “Fine Brannigan, we’ll need back up and weapons.”
“Can’t spare any, Auf weider seen Planet express, bye sexy…”
Her Wristlojackimator clicked off and left the crew once again stunned.
“So what the hell are we supposed to do?” asked Amy worriedly, “We have like three laser guns in this place!! How are we supposed to defend the building?”
“What about the X-mas armor?” Fry asked, brightening up, “That stuff is enough to keep Robot Santa out, it should hold up for a while.”
“For once, Fry, you've had an excellent idea. It’ll have to be modified though, the ship has to be able to get out and people have to be able to get in.” the professor said.
“Great!” Leela exclaimed, “We might live through this yet, let’s get a move on people.”
“Hold on everyone,” the professor said as the crew turned to leave, “There are still robots out there and if you get killed I won’t have anyone to carry my stuff when we leave, Sit tight I’m going to call in a favor.”
The professor spent a few minutes calling someone after which he announced that his friends would be here shortly. Thirty minutes later the crew could hear muffled laser fire in the distance and shortly afterwards there was a knock on the front door. Fry opened it and was knocked on his butt as fifteen heavily armed and armored men and women rushed through carrying large backpacks as well as crates and various other weapons.
“Welcome gentlemen!” The professor said, “How was your trip?”
“Not terrible, met a few bots on the way over, dealt with them easily.” A man, apparently the group’s leader, said, “We’re going back for more supplies and weapons, I’ll leave two of my guys here to hold down the fort.” He directed two of his men to get up to the roof of the building. “Half of your crew should start prepping your ship for takeoff, DOOP just radioed that they’re going to start escorting groups of people to evacuation points within the hour; the other half should find stuff we can use for barricades because we’re going to need to blockade this place.”
The group left in a hurry and the crew scrambled into action. Fry, Leela and Amy began pepping the ship while Hermes and Zoidberg combed the Planet Express from top to bottom grabbing all the extra materials and things they could from the basement and the professors broken down contraptions. The group returned shortly with more trunks and equipment.
Farnsworth gathered the majority of the group in the conference room, “Good news everyone! I called in a favor and these mercenaries are going to protect us! This is Tom, he’s their leader.”
Tom nodded politely; he was not very tall, around Amy’s height, he wore a pair of black combat boots similar to Leela’s, dark camouflage pants, a black armored vest that left his upper arms bare, he wore metal gauntlets on both his arms that included a digital display, many of the rest of his men wore helmets but the only headgear Tom wore was a pair of clear wraparound glasses that were clearly running a heads-up display of some kind. He had short brown hair and a scruffy brown beard, protruding over his right shoulder was the butt of a large laser rifle and sticking out from opposite sides of his back, near his waist, were the hilts of two short swords.
“We’re going to do our best to keep you guys safe; my guys are the best of the best, DOOP even employs us as commandos on occasion. These are my Lieutenants, this is Will my second in command and our heavy weapons specialist.”
A big burly man stepped forward, encased almost head to toe in body armor, he carried a massive laser Gatling gun the barrel almost as big as Fry.
“And this is my third in command, Jade, our sniper; she’s the best shot I’ve ever seen, almost never misses.”
Fry noticed Tom exchange a significant look with the woman; he could tell there was something between them. She tipped the brim of her black Blernsball cap in greeting, a short curly ponytail protruded from the back of the cap; she wore black military fatigues and a black armored vest with lots of pockets for ammunition, grenades and other weapons, strapped to each of her legs were was a laser pistol and a large sniper rifle was slung across her back.
“So,” Tom said, putting both hands on the table and leaning over it, “The robots are concentrated downtown, attempting to keep DOOP from breaching MomCorp tower, so there’s very few of them here for now. My guys and I are going to go to all your neighbors, and move them into here so they can be the first out of the city. Then we’ll strip down the buildings and make a crap-ton of barricades for this place.”
There was a beep from his wrist gauntlets, he glanced down, “Ok guys, DOOP says they’re escorting in the first batch of evacuees. Get your ship ready captain...uh … sorry, purple I don’t know your name.”
“I’m Leela, this is Fry, our delivery boy, Hermes, our bureaucrat…” She introduced everyone and Tom shook each of their hands in turn,
“Alright then, Leela get your ship ready they’re at the door.”
“Let’s go guys!” she yelled to Amy and Fry and the three sprinted to the ship as five DOOP troopers escorted 30 civilians into the hanger.
Over the next twelve hours they flew twenty four separate groups of people up to the DOOP fleet. Other ships were using their hanger as well; soon DOOP sent them a schedule of when ships would arrive and when they would leave. Every time Fry saw the Planet Express building there was less armor on it and more of it on the large barricades that Tom’s guys had set up from their own equipment and the scavenged buildings. Each time they came back there were more and more robots in the street and regular volleys of laser fire erupting from the entrenched mercenaries behind the barricades.
On their twenty fifth landing, Leela almost crashed the ship into the landing deck on the Nimbus but luckily caught it before any major damage was done to the ship.
“Leela?” Fry said worriedly, putting a hand on her shoulder, “You ok? You don’t look so good.”
“I’m ok Fry,” She replied, a small smile spreading across her lips as she lowered the exit ramp and the civilians disembarked, “I’m just tired…” she rubbed her eye, clearly fatigued.
“Why don’t you let me fly for a while? I've gotten pretty good at flying this hunk of junk over the last ten years…”
She thought for a second, “Ok, the three of us will switch off every four hours, two on the bridge, and one sleeping at all times.” She stood up, giving Fry the chair, she gave his shoulder a squeeze as she turned and headed for the door to the cabins, “Thanks again Fry.” she said giving him a big smile.
They spent the next twelve hours ferrying people and dropping them off. On the dawn of the second day of the siege, Leela brought the ship in for a landing. Fry looked out the window and saw that the barricades were beginning to be moved back closer to the building as men were being lost. The post had been reinforced by several squads of DOOP troopers but casualties were a higher than anyone would have liked. Tom had lost five men and the DOOP troopers had lost ten men over the course of the day.
Tom strode onto the ship as soon as the stairway came down. “We’re running low on fighters,” he said getting straight to the point in addressing the three of them, “I need someone to ferry messages back and forth between the Professor and the barricades, he’s monitoring robot activity all over the city and we can't use communicators for any tactical information, they’re listening to us.”
“I can do it.” Leela said stepping forward immediately.
Tom shook his head, “No, you’re probably one of the best pilots I've ever seen I need you in the air, and the same with you,” he said pointing to Amy, “ship needs and engineer in case of an emergency.” He turned to fry, “That just leaves you…”
“Why me?” Fry asked frowning and crossing his arms.
“Because Farnsworth tells me you’re fast on your feet, and quite frankly whenever you fly the ship the runs have been a few minutes behind schedule and every second counts right now.”
“Wait a second!” Leela protested, “We need a third person for shifts, and while Fry’s not perfect, he’s doing his best!”
“I know and I’m sorry but we need him here, you can take the bureaucrat with you instead.”
“Fine…” Fry said stepping forward reluctantly, “Hermes is a better pilot than me anyway.” He turned away with Tom and began walking away when he heard Leela call his name.
He turned and saw Leela still standing on the ship’s stairs as civilians began to line up in front of it, “You better come be alive when I get back, ‘cause if you die I’m going to bring you back to life so I can kill you for dying in the first place!”
He gave her a smirk full of confidence he didn’t have, “I’ll be here! Don’t worry, just keep these people safe!”
She smiled, worry still showing in her face and ran up the gangplank, Fry hoped that this wouldn't be the last time he would see her.
Fry spent the whole second day of the siege ferrying messages between The Professor, the DOOP lieutenant and Tom. Around mid-day, the DOOP lieutenant was killed by a killbot that managed to get in a lucky shot. All of the DOOP troops were rookies and there were no more officers present among the twenty or so there were left, so Tom assumed command of the defense of planet express. Fry rested when he could, grabbing fifteen minutes here or there.
Just after dawn on the third day, fry was lightly snoozing in the Professor’s loft as the old man kept scanning with every single instrument he had at his disposal. He was jerked out of his sleep as the professor yelled, “Sweet Zombie Jesus!”
Minutes later, now wide awake from adrenaline, he was sprinting down the stairs, scared out of his mind; their chances of survival had dropped to almost zero.