Futurama

Fan Fiction

The Other, Part 22
By Rye Guy

Chapter 22

September 14, 3003

The next morning, Leela awakens to find that Fry is not in bed with her. Groaning and yawning, she sits up and looks around for him. A shadow on the floor catches her attention. Following it, her eye is led to Fry standing on the balcony, his hands folded behind his back and his legs apart in a powerful stance. Standing, Leela dons her robe over her naked body and walks to the glass sliding door.

"Fry?" she asks while sliding open the door. "Everything ok?" Fry gives no reply as he is immersed in meditation. She reaches out to tap his shoulder. Just as her hand gets close, Fry quickly yet gently grabs her by the wrist and turns to her with a smile.

"Good morning." he greets happily as he releases her wrist.

"Where did those reflexes come from?"

"Oh that? Just something I learned while I was training with Brio."

"Oh..."

Fry returns his gaze to the morning sky to continue his meditation. Leela stands next to him and leans against the railing.

"There's something I've been meaning to ask you."

"Yeah?"

"Back when we fought Bereave, where did...I mean, how..." Leela struggles to come up with the right words, "The way you fought with your sword; I've never seen you like that before. You were strong and powerful, forceful and balanced. Almost as if you had done it before."

He takes a deep breathe to end his meditation and leans against the railing as well, "I was wondering the same thing myself. All during that fight, I kept asking myself how I was able to weild it so well. Brio explained it to me. Since I am the prophesied Mighty One who was chosen for this battle, I was endowed with that strength and skill when I was born; but only when the time was right would I be able to put them to use. Or something like that."

"So I guess Brio taught you a lot, didn't she?"

He takes her hand in his, "Leela, don't worry. It was nothing like that. She was just like us; connected to this situation whether she wanted to or not."

"But Nibbler gave us a choice, right?"

"Well he offered us a choice, but really, we didn't have any say so. He just made that empty offer so we wouldn't feel forced into it."

"Hmm." replies Leela nonchalantly. Fry looks curious.

"I guess you're not surprised?"

"No, I am. But truthfully, I really don't care anymore. That was all in the past and Nibbler's long gone. All that matters is that you've come back to me."

The lovers share a warm embrace, "Just like I promised you."

Leela's curiosity peaked, she steps back just a bit. "That reminds me Fry. You said 'I'll meet you there.' What did you mean by that?"

"I meant that I would come back to you in someplace very special for us."

"You came back at Central Park though. There's no significance for us there."

"You sure? I could have sworn we kissed there that night."

"No, we kissed in front of my apartment building. Are you feeling okay?"

He stammers for a moment, "Oh yeah. Guess all this time away and going from one dimension to the next has just got my mind all scrambled up or something."

The alarm clock buzzes loudly from inside. Leela steps back in to shut it off. "Come on, we need to get ready for work."

**********

In the locker room at Planet Express, Bender is using an electric buffer on his ass. Once finished, he checks it out in the mirror and chuckles as it shimmers in the light.

"Bite my shimmering metal ass. Hmm, that could be my new phrase. Whoop, missed a spot." As he continues buffing the last remaining ass-stain, the sound of the buffer drowns out the Amy's voice. Bender has yet to acknowledge her presence, despite the fact that she's been standing there for about 10 minutes now holding a shoe box full of decorations. Fed up with waiting, she unplugs Bender's buffer.

"Hey, what gives? I wasn't done!"

"This is more important. Now, as I was saying-" Bender cuts her off.

"I heard you the first dozen times. You wanna show me the decorations you got for Skyler's surprise birthday party."

"So what do you think?" she asks holding up the open box.

"Why are you so obsessed with this anyways?"

"I don't know. I guess it's just because he's been so great to us all this time. I mean, he took over for Fry and even was our temporary captain for deliveries Leela couldn't go on. And besides, you know you've enjoyed him keeping you company since Fry's been gone."

"Okay, okay, geez! So the guy's a good worker and all but he keeps me up every night with those damn nightmares of his. Always wakes up screaming and I got neighbors knocking on the walls. The worst Fry ever did was that week he watched all of those zombie movies and wet the bed."

"Bender, please help me with his party. It's on the twenty second and it would be a nice gesture to show him that he's part of the family now."

"Not interested."

She sighs, "I'll pay you fifty bucks."

"Interested!"

************

Upstairs in the Professor's lab, Skyler and Farnsworth are having a private meeting.

"Skyler, the thing is that now that Fry's back, he'll be re-instated as our delivery boy which means that your services in that field are no longer required."

"So what? You're firing me?"

"Not necessarily. In fact, I may have a new position opening up for you. That is if I get the approval from the person currently in that position."

"And what position might that be?"

"I'll get back to you on that. But right now I have more urgently burning questions to ask you." Farnsworth walks over to a monitor on the nearby counter and inserts a disc into the drive. On the monitor, several different windows open up, each revealing a different chart.

Skyler leans in close but it unable to make heads or tails of it. "What's this?"

"I have a confession to make. For some months now I have been using that old energy sensor of mine to perform readings on you."

Skyler's face pales, "And when did you start this?"

"I first took an interest the very night you arrived. You blacked out and my sensors picked up an incredible amount of energy at that very same moment. I first thought it was coincidence but upon further examination, I found that every time you blacked out, my sensors picked up the same readings. And on more than one occasion my machines were destroyed. But what still puzzles me is what these readings have to do with you."

Skyler scratches his chin trying to come up with an answer. "I can't rightly say, Professor." he replies apprehensively.

"I also gathered more powerful readings like these back when I was attaching your new leg. Tell me Skyler, what causes your black-outs?"

He shrugs "It's usually a variety of things. Sometimes stress, being over-exerted or..." he trails off.

"Or?"

"Most of the time it's because something reminds me of my past."

"Oh, I see...well it seems that hasn't been happening within the past few weeks. Your black-outs at work have severely reduced. However, my last energy reading came the day Fry came back. So now I'm wondering if they have something to do with him too."

"Who knows? With all that's been happening lately, it could be any number of things."

"Hmm, I do suppose you're right." Farnsworth removes the disc but as he turns to continue his thoughts, Skyler is quickly walking out the door and is out of sight in seconds.

****************

Later that afternoon as the crew (i.e. Skyler, Bender, and Amy) prepare for a delivery, Fry is helping them load up while Leela watches from the sidelines.

"Man! I haven't been up in this baby in forever." exclaims Fry as he feels the joy of being home again.

"Why don't you come with us?" asks Bender.

"I'd love to but I gotta stay here and take care of Leela." he feels her hand on his shoulder.

"Nonsense. Go. I'll be fine here. Besides, after all you've been through, a good delivery is just what you need. Like the good ol' days, right?"

"You sure you'll be fine?"

"Sure. Amy can stay behind and we can go out or something."

Amy pops in, "Ooo! I know just what to do!"

Fry shrugs and smiles, "Awesome! Looks like I get to go."

********

Our two ladies are riding in Amy's car in the early evening...

"So where are you taking me?" asks Leela curious as to why Amy is so excited.

"There's this new restaurant downtown called 'Mojo's Mojo'. I know it sounds kinda bleh but they have a neat set-up. You gotta see it."

A short drive later and the ladies have arrived at Mojo's Mojo. From the outside, the building looks like a nightclub with the restaurant's name in huge pink and green neon lights with a flashing form of a rubber ducky with devil horns and sunglasses made out of red neon lights. Once inside though, Leela is surprised to see that it's more of a nice sit-down restaurant. A waiter seats them and they begin to look over the menu. Many kinds of rather exotic foods. Some Leela has heard about, and others she can barely pronounce. There are even some classic Earthican favorites such as the triple-decker pizza burger ( a hamburger with mini pizzas in place of meat patties. A dish made famous back in the 2980's.) Since Leela isn't familiar with a lot of what's on the menu, and with the lunch crowd, she hates to ask the already busy waiter what each dish is so she decided to go with the aforementioned pizza burger. After all, she is eating for two now.

"So, what do you think?" inquires a rather giddy Amy.

"Actually, it's really nice. I bet Fry would love it. I think I'll bring him here sometime." she takes a bit of her pizza burger. As the melty cheese dribbles down her chin, she can't help but chuckle.

********

Meanwhile, as the crew have just departed and are on their way back to Earth; Fry and Bender are standing in the bridge...

Bender is ranting "That's the last time I visit the Planet of the Whiners. Anytime you disagree with them about anything, they cry and whine like little pansies."

Fry just smiles and takes a comfortable seat by the navigation console (his usual spot). With a sigh of relief, she kicks his feet up onto the console. "It's great to be back."

Bender pats him on the back. "Missed you meatbag. We got some catching up to do. But first, I'm gonna go lay down and recharge for a bit. Wake me when we get back to Earth."

"Will do."

Just as Bender exits, Skyler enters with his nose buried in some notebook containing the ship's schematics.

"Hey Skyler." greets Fry warmly. "Whatcha reading?"

"What? Oh, just some prints about the ship. It's blue prints, schematics, stuff like that." his response is rather quick.

"Mind if I ask you something?"

"No, go ahead."

"Why is it that you seem so tense around me? Do you not trust me or something?"

"No Fry, it's not anything like that. I guess it's just getting adjusted to you being back and I'm kinda worried about what's happening with my job and my living conditions."

"Well, living condition concerns you can put to rest. I'm moving into Leela's place so you can stay at Bender's; if it's alright with him that is."

"Oh well that's nice."

There is an awkward silence for a moment or two before Fry turns in his seat to face Skyler.

"So I hear you're quite the hero."

"What do you mean?"

"Oh come on, don't play dumb. According to everybody, you stopped a centuries-old war on some other planet not too long after you showed up."

"Oh yeah. It was actually my first delivery since being here."

Fry looks rather intrigued as he readies his next comment, "I also hear you're quite the mysterious one. The loner hero with the troubled past, right?"

Skyler sits at the helm and closes the notebook. "Yes, but I'd rather not get into that right now. Not to be rude."

"So where did all those scars come from?"

"Oh, those are just-"

"Or that metal brace screwed onto your back?"

"What are you-" Fry keeps interrupting.

"What about the tattoo and the leg, huh?"

Skyler's head begins to pound and his heart races. With his shortening breathes, he struggles to answer the questions. It suddenly overcomes him and he passes out.

********************

Skyler finds himself in what appears to be a hospital. He is alone in the dark hallway. A light flickers on and he is now standing on one side of a viewing window in the maternity ward. On the other side of the window is the delivery room where a woman in labor is in agony. There are a few doctors and nurses scattered around the room and a haunting shadow in the corner. The window is smudged and foggy and though he can't make out her face, he's almost certain that it's his mother in there. He's witnessing his own birth. Everything seems to be going as it should until her heart monitor begins beeping rapidly. The doctor's try to stabilize her but it's no use. All Skyler can do is stand and watch in silence. But amidst all the confusion, he notices that his mother's gaze is focused squarely on the shadow in the corner. So he too stares, wondering what it could be that's got her attention. Suddenly, the shadow moves on it's own towards her. No one else seems to notice except for him. He bangs on the window and shouts but despite his best efforts, all is silent. The shadow moves ever close until it is casting over her. Once covered by the shadow, she begins to convulse and struggle for breathe. It's as if she's being strangled by some invisible force. He cries and screams, trying to break the glass to help her but it's all for naught. Just as her heart monitor flatlines, he wakes up.

Quickly sitting up, he is shocked to be in his bed in his and Bender's apartment. Regaining his composure, he wipes the tears from his eyes. He gets up, walks to the bathroom and throws up in the toilet for a few minutes. Once done, he washes up and goes back into the main room to fetch his jacket which is hanging on the back of the couch. He searches through the pockets and panics.

"Where is it?"

He double checks, then goes through his pants-pockets; still nothing. In a fit, he turns on the lights and starts the process of turning the whole apartment upside down to find the photograph that he's kept in his possession for so many years. Pilfering through the bedsheets, he notices something on the nearby end table. With one glance, he recognizes and grabs the photo. But there is the broken picture frame beneath is that gets his attention.

"What the hell?"

His eyes open wide and he gasps as he sees what picture is still inside the broken frame.

******************

The next few days go by as usual. Leela has been staying home more often now while Fry works at Planet Express, Amy continues to gather stuff for Skyler's surprise party and is eagerly awaiting Kif's arrival. Leela has only been seen a few times over these past few days. And the times she has been there, Skyler has gone to great lengths to avoid her at all costs (including hiding in closets or ducking behind corners to head off in the opposite direction when he sees her approaching).

As promised, Kif arrives at the first of the following week and with him here, Amy has taken a few days of vacation time so they can spend the entire time together. So lately it's just been Fry, Skyler, and Bender doing deliveries while Farnsworth, Hermes, and Zoidberg do whatever it is they usually do while the others are gone. But, despite all the new changes, one in particular has gotten little attention from the others. This thick tension between Skyler and Fry. Skyler's been watching him closely, observing his behavior, listening to how he talks. And even though he can't put his finger on it, something just doesn't seem right.

*********************

September 20th, 3003...

Amy, Kif, Fry and Leela have decided to double date tonight and go to Mojo's Mojo for dinner. Once parked, they begin the short walk to the front door. Amy is all over Kif, and for good reason.

"Come on Kif! You're driving me crazy! You've been here for three days already and you still haven't given me my surprise yet!" she wines.

"I know shmoopsie puffs, but I'm saving it for just the right time." He turns his head slighty and winks to Fry who gives him a wink and a thumbs up. Amy is oblivious to it but Leela notices and gives Fry a curious look. He leans in close and whispers in her ear. Leela smiles and looks at Amy with that 'I know a secret' look.

The happy couples enter the building. As they're standing in line to get a table, Leela gets a sudden urge in her lower tummy.

"I need to hit the ladies room real quick. Fry, will you walk me over?"

"No prob. I've actually got to go myself."

"Do you need me to come with?" asks a concerned Amy.

"No, I'll be fine. Besides, I figured you too can use a few minutes alone before dinner." comments Leela with a grin as she and Fry walk to the restrooms. While those two are gone, a waiter leads Amy and Kif to their table for four. As they patiently wait for their friends, Amy sees somebody familiar. Just a few tables away she sees Michelle, Fry's old girlfriend, with some mystery man.

"Come on Kif, I'll introduce you." they walk over to her table. "Michelle, remember me?"

She looks up, "Amy? Wow, uh, what are you doing here."

"Just out on a date. This is my boyfriend, Kif. He's a lieutenant for DOOP."

"Pleased to meet you." greets Kif extending his hand to shake hers. Though she's been in the future for some time now, Michelle still has some difficulty adjusting; especially when meeting some squishy green alien who's dating a young chinese girl from Mars.

She shakes his hand, "Charmed."

Amy looks but can't get a good glimpse of the mystery man's face. It's being covered by a baseball cap along with his long red hair and beard. "So who's your friend here?"

Michelle smiles proudly. "Oh, this is Fr-"

"Hey Michelle!"

-"Fry?" She seems almost in shock to see Fry standing before her. "What the hell-I mean, um, how have you been?"

"Great." he proclaims.

Michelle then notices Leela's big tummy, "Whoa! What happened to you?!"

"Fry and I are expecting!" Leela's face positively glows as she announces those words to her husband-to-be's bitchy ex-girlfriend.

"So, who's your date?" asks Fry.

Michelle just stares at the two still, seemingly in awe for some unexplained reason. "Oh, this is my boyfriend...Fr...Frank." she stutters.

"Nice to meet you." Fry holds out his hand but Frank doesn't budge.

"He's mute I'm afraid, and it takes him a bit to warm up to people he doesn't know."

"Oh, well no problem."

However, Frank reaches his hand in Leela's direction. The sound of him trying to speak is almost haunting; he sounds sad for some reason. Michelle, in a hurry, stands up grabbing Frank by the arm and hurriedly pulling him behind her. "Well it was nice seeing you all again but we really have to be going now. Good luck with everything. Bye." Before they know it, the two are out the door. No one got an actual look at Frank.

The couples sit at their table and Leela can't help but make a judgement about Michelle, "Wonder what she sees in him. I don't remember her being the more sensitive type, taking care of some mute shut-in like that."

"Probably the red hair." Jokes Fry as he runs his fingers through his hair. The two share a little laugh and then look through the menus, each knowing that this little encounter couldn't and wouldn't ruin their night out.

***********

After dinner, the foursome drive to the park to take a nice romantic walk. Even with all the city lights, they can still make out the stars filling the night sky. They walk the trail until reaching the lake. Kif looks at Fry and does a strange hand gesture which makes Fry and Leela walk away to give them some privacy. Kif and Amy sit together on the bench by the lakeside.

"Amy, we need to talk."

She looks worried, "Is something wrong?"

"Oh no my love. Everything's wonderful." he reassures her with a kiss on the cheek. "Amy, I love you with all my heart."

"I love you too."

"You really are incredible. And as much as I kind of hate to admit it, you are a lot braver than I am."

"Oh honey, you're brave. It's just the kind of bravery you have causes you to run and find the best hiding spots. Sometimes, it's braver just to know when to walk away. Or in your case, run away."

Kif laughs and then sighs as he and Amy look up to the stars. "No matter where I am out there, I always feel like a huge part of me is missing. Dearest, I know we've discussed this a few times before only for the answer to be that we weren't ready. But now...now I've never been so ready for anything in my life." Kif gets down on one knee, holds out a small open black box that reveals a silver ring with a princess-cut diamond inside and asks, "Amy Wong, will you marry me?"

Amy's mouth opens in awe as Kif slips the ring on her finger. She stares at it, then at Kif, then back at the ring. The whole tim her mouth hanging open and tears welling up in her eyes.

"Isn't there something you want to say?" asks Kif.

"Oh, Kif! Yes! Yes I will!" she throws her arms around his squishy neck and the two kiss tenderly causing Kif to lose control of his camouflage reflex. As they kiss, Fry runs circles around them with two sparklers in hand whooping and shouting for joy while Leela stands by the bench and does a little dance with her two sparklers.

***********

Meanwhile, at Planet Express...

Doctor Zoidberg and Professor Farnsworth are having a little looksie at Skyler's metallic back brace. It's been giving him some problems lately and he's wanting to get it either fixed or replaced. Well, to be more correct, it's been giving him problems since day one. Seeing as how it was just quickly constructed out of old medical supplies on short notice back home after his injury. He lays face down on the examination table while Zoidberg and Farnsworth assess the situation.

After much tinkering around, they let Skyler sit back up.

"So, what's the prognosis docs?"

"Unfortunately Skyler, that brace is attached onto your back with the bolts going directly into the bones of your spine." says Farnsworth.

"I'm surprised that you've been able to walk all these years after that kind of procedure." admits Zoidberg.

"Well, it was done kind of spur of the moment."

"Even so," continues Zoidberg, "you must have had an excellent doctor for this. If one bolt was even a hair further into your vertebrae, you would be paralyzed. But each one was inserted at the precise depth. Who was your doctor?"

Skyler smiles, "I, um, can't remember his name but he reminds me alot of you. So what's the final word?"

Farnsworth finalizes the prognosis, "The thing is that these bolts were originally intended for temporary use for like post-surgery recovery and such. But, according to you, they've been in for the better part of two years and they've actually grown into the bones. Your spinal cord and even your nerves have grown around them. If we were to do anything at all to them now, there is a 50/50 chance of you either ending up paralyzed from the shoulders down or dying from damage to your nervous system."

"Damn." is the only thing the young man can think to say in response. So there's nothing you can do for the pain?"

Zoidberg hands him a small orange bottle with blue pills inside. "All that can be done is give you these pain killers."

Dejected, Skyler puts his shirt back on and takes the bottle, "That sucks. Well, thanks for checking it out anyways."

Grabbing his jacket from the coat rack on his way out the door, he is greeted by Bender who is waiting by the elevator.

"Hey Bender, headed home?"

"Yeah. With all the lovebirds out tonight, I figured I'd just head on home and get drunk."

The elevator door opens and the two enter. "Awesome. Look, I have a question. Since Fry's moving in with Leela and I don't have a place to stay, I was wondering if I could move in with you..you know...permanently?"

Bender scratches his chin for a second and thinks "What the hell. It'd be lonely there by myself. Plus, I wouldn't be able to tell the neighbors I have a pet anymore. So sure, you can stay."

"Thank you!"

"But under one condition."

"Anything."

"No more keeping me up at night. I know you've leveled off more recently, but from time to time you still go off kilter."

The elevator reaches the ground level and they exit the building. "Alright. I can't make any promises. But if something ever happens at night, I'll try ot be as quiet as possible."

************************

Across town in a small townhouse, Michelle is in her kitchen with a glass of Scotch in her hand.

"What the hell happened back there?" she asks aloud to her companion before taking a sip of her drink, "I'm so confused right now. You have to tell me!"

But he just sits there, motionless, on the sofa; his head turned to face out the window.

"Damn it! I know you can talk! Now tell me, what happened? You must remember something!"

He whispers something softly but she can't hear so she leans in closer.

"What was that?"

He whispers the same word again, only this time, she hears him clearly. "Why? Why do you remember her? Please just focus only on me now. I'm all you have."

Michelle kisses him but he doesn't return it. His gaze still fixed on the night sky through the window. She throws her glass against the wall before falling into his lap and crying.

*************

September 22nd, 3003...

Skyler and Bender come waltzing into Planet Express, joking around like pals do, and make their way to the lounge where they find themselves among a celebratory gathering involving all their fellow crew members.

Amy looks up and smiles, "Okay, now that everyone's here; Kif and I have an announcement."

"We're engaged!" the happy couple announce in unison.

Of course, an announcement like this is taken rather well. Fry and Leela aren't as excited now because they were the first to know. Bender congratulates them both but that's about the extent of his good tidings to them. Zoidberg claks his claws in celebration; Hermes takes this opportunity to consult them about different life insurance policies to consider, and Farnsworth gives some kind of rant about interspecies marriages. Skyler however is seemingly less than thrilled. He just keeps to the back, away from the crowd. He feels a tap on his shoulder and turns to see Fry gesturing for him to follow. Skyler follows Fry down the hall to the conference room.

"What's up, Fry?"

"Sit down." he demands sternly, Skyler obeys and sits but Fry continues standing.

"Skyler, yesterday some things were brought to my attention that we need to talk about. What's this I hear about your little trip to Battletopia 7."

"We discussed this already, remember? About how I stopped the war and all that."

"I'm not talking about that, I'm talking about you hitting Leela."

He gulps, he had completely forgotten than had even happened.

"She was pregnant for God's sake! And you hit her? It was no more than two days after I went missing and you hit her?!"

"It's not what you think, okay. She was hysterical, crying. I was helping her get a hold of herself. And it wasn't a hit, it was just a slap to bring her back to her senses."

"There are different ways to help pregnant women than slapping them across the face!"

"Look, I'm sorry. It wasn't my place. I just didn't want to see her like that and the only thing I could think of was doing that."

"M-hmm. Alright, now explain this one to me." Fry sets his fist upon the table and leans in close to Skyler, boxing him in his chair. "I heard from Leela about your recent visit to her place just before I came back. So please, tell me what you meant when you said that you love her."

Skyler stands in defense, "That was a misunderstanding! I didn't mean it the way it came out!"

"NO! I know what you meant. Here's this woman who's weak, defenseless, lonely and vulnerable. The best time to try and have your way with her right?! Have your fun while no one else is around!"

Fry grabs Skyler by the collar of his jacket, lifts him off of the floor and slams him down onto the conference table so hard that it cracks beneath him. With his hands around Skyler's throat, he struggles to break free.

"She belongs to me! Stay out of my way or I WILL kill you!"

A fiery glow from Fry's eyes frightens Skyler to death. It's a familiar glow, one he hasn't seen or felt in a long time. His worst fear was come to life. Fry releases him, and turns to walk away while Skyler gasps for air.

"And that is a promise."

Skyler gets up and runs across the room. Just as Fry reaches the door, Skyler grabs him by the shoulder, makes him turn around and punches him square in the jaw.

Fry pops his jawbone back into place. "Insolent boy!"

**********

Back in the lounge, Amy is telling everyone about Skyler's surprise birthday party. They are all in the Professor's lab upstairs where Amy has already decorated and Bender has made the cake, no word yet on whether or not it's edible.

Amy continues with her planning, "Okay, everyone. Skyler has no clue that any of us know about his birthday and he's definitely not expecting all this. So we just need to bring him up here and..." she looks around and notices that two people are missing, "Hey, where's Fry and Skyler?"

Oh, Fry said he had some things to discuss with him in private." explains Leela, "I think he's just trying to keep him distracted while we finish up in here."

*********

Fry grabs Skyler by the throat and holds him against the wall. Skyler raises his fist and slams it down onto Fry's elbow, making him let go. Before Fry can react, he is kicked in the chest by Skyler's heavy boot-clad foot which causes him to take several steps back before being clothes-lined into the table, causing it to break apart. Skyler tries to pin him down to the floor but he ends up literally being flipped over and sent flying a few feet. Fry stands, grabs one of the chairs and bashes it against Skyler's back. While his back brace does absorb some of the shock, the bolts in his vertebrae send the shock to his spine and he is rendered temporarily paralyzed for just a few seconds. And a few seconds is all it takes for Fry to grab him by the legs and swing him around until he slams against the wall. Skyler tries his best to crawl away, but a still standing Fry lifts him up by his belt and drags him to the kitchen where he drops him on the floor and begins searching the drawers for a butcher's knife. He finds one in the first drawer he looks in, and just in time as Skyler is now at his feet. Fry turns quickly and begins slashing the knife back and forth. Skyler jumps back again and again to dodge but once cornered by the fridge he is cut right across the chest. Fortunately, it's not a very deep cut but his shirt is soaking in blood now.

********

"Do you hear that racket?" asks Kif.

A worried look crosses Leela's face, "Sounds like it's coming from downstairs."

Fry rears the knife back and just as he thrusts it forward to stab Skyler in the chest, his opponent ducks down, wraps his arms around his waist and flips him over his shoulder, causing him to drop the knife. Fry reaches for it but Skyler stomps his foot down on his wrist just before he can grab it. He crouches down, picks up the knife and holds it to Fry's throat.

"STOP!!" screams Leela. This distracts Skyler giving Fry and clear shot at tripping him up.

While Skyler stumbles on his feet, Fry makes a run for everyone at the door. "Kif, call the police!" he shouts.

Kif runs into the lounge to make the call while Bender, Zoidberg and Hermes force their way through the doorway to bombard Skyler. Bender grabs one arm and gets a hold around his neck, Hermes grabs his legs and Zoidberg gets his claw on the hand wielding the knife and with a squeeze makes him drop it. Amy runs to Fry's side to make sure he's okay. He's a little bloody and battered but otherwise fine. Leela is the only one being still as she stands in the doorway, holding firmly to the doorframe with one hand on her tummy and breathing deeply.

A panicked Fry grabs her shoulder, "Leela, are you okay?"

"Get me to the hospital! My water just broke!"

"Oh, God!" exclaims Fry as he takes her by the hand and leads her to the lounge.

Skyler sees the two leaving his sight and this makes him struggle harder to break free from their grasp. The sound of sirens echoes outside.

Amy steps in, "The police are here and Leela's going into labor! Hold him until the cops get in!" She exits to join the others.

Just then, the giant door of the docking bay is forced open and four officers with guns drawn rush in. Two of the officers tell Skyler's captors to let him go, the abide and the officers keep him pinned down and handcuff him. The three quickly run out to Amy's car where everyone is waiting. Leela is doing her breathing exercises with Fry at her side just as they climb in. They speed away from the scene and Amy sees Skyler being forced into a police car in her rearview mirror.

Skyler watches in sorrow as the car vanishes in the distance. The officers force him into the back of the car and begins driving to the station downtown. While they are on their radio informing the station of the situation, Skyler just sits back and curses over and over in aggravation.

"How do I get out of this one?" he mutters to himself.

The officer continues his transmission, "So, time of arrest is 10:35 A.M., September 22nd, 3003."

Skyler's eyes widen as he overhears the date and sits up, pressing his face against the glass between him and the officers. "What's today's date?"

"September 22nd."

A shocking realization of today's significance comes over him, "Oh no...Officer, I need you to pull over, I'm gonne be sick."

"Sit tight, punk, we're almost at the station now."

"I'm seriously about to blow chunks all over back here." he begins making vomiting sounds.

"Okay, fine! But no funny business!" he pulls over the cruiser and escorts Skyler out onto the sidewalk and keeps a hold of him so he won't try to run off.

While kneeling over, Skyler tries furiously to come up with a plan of escape. He knows running won't work and neither will fighting while handcuffed. Out of the corner of his eye, he notices a small bit of his prized photo in his jacket pocket. He wriggles around a bit until it falls out onto the ground.

"Officer, could you pick that up for me?" Sure enough, the cop bends down and as he does, Skyler head-butts him, knocking him out cold. He then jumps up and hoops his hands under his feet so now they're in front of him. The second cop notices what's going on and gets out of the car, gun in hand. Skyler stands back up with the first officer's gun in hand and, with amazing accuracy, shoots the gun out of the cop's hand. With no weapon, he holds his hands up.

"Come over here," demands Skyler. "Undo my handcuffs." The officer complies, as would anyone being held at gunpoint. "Thank you." says Skyler before knocking him unconscious with the butt of the gun. He then hides the gun under his jacket and drives off in the cruiser, racing to the hospital.

******************

Leela is being wheeled into the delivery room with Fry is right there at her side the entire way. Once in the delivery room, the doctor places her legs in stirrups while nurses ready the supplies.

"We have a stress induced labor.," the doctor explains "Luckily she won't be more than a week premature but we still have to be cautious."

With all the commotion going on, Fry finds himself in the far corner of the room. One nurse hooks Leela up to a heart monitor which is now beeping rapidly. She is screaming in pain.

"Come on, Turanga, push! Push!"

She grabs the bed railings and pushes as hard as she can. With everyone preoccupied with the delivery, no one notices that Fry has stolen the umbilical cord scissors from the nurses' cart.

*******

Down in the waiting room, the rest of the crew are eagerly anticipating news on how things are going in there. Amy's still distraught over Skyler trying so intently to hurt Fry.

"The look on his face, the way he was holding that knife, no doubt if we hadn't shown up when we did that he would have killed Fry." Amy wraps her arms around Kif for comfort.

Bender punches the wall, "I knew something was fishy about that guy! I swear, if I ever see him again I"ll shove my footcuff so far up his ass-"

Farnsworth stands to take lead, "Now calm down everyone, calm down. Yes, we just witnessed something horrible but now's not the time to focus on that."

"That's right," joins Hermes, "There'll be plenty of time to worry about Skyler later. Let da' police deal with him."

"Right now we just need to be here for our friends." finishes Kif.

Bender crosses his arms, leans against the wall and mutters curses under his breathe.

********

"The baby's crowning! You're doing great! Keep pushing!" shouts the doctor.

Fry takes the scissors and slits the throat of one of the nurses, casting her body to the side before doing the same to the second nurse. Leela looks over and even though she sees what's happening, she doesn't want to believe it. But as Fry moves closer to her with a hauntingly familiar red glow in his eyes, she tries to say something but her voice is strained from the pain.

******

"Where's Leela!" Skyler shouts at the nurses behind the desk. The crew hear him and are shocked to see him there. He notices them and jumps into the waiting room, "Where is she?"

"What the hell are you doing here? How'd you get away from the police?" asks Amy.

Bender sucker punches Skyler from behind causing him to spit up blood. Even though it hurts a great deal, he ignores the pain and repeats his question.

Amy gets in his face, "We're not telling you where she is. Just stay away from us. I thought I could trust you."

He grabs her by both shoulders and speaks in a much calmer tone, "We don't have much time. I need to know where she is now."

Amy still won't tell him. Suddenly, Leela's screaming echoes through the hall. Skyler grabs his concealed weapon and charges it.

"I have to save her this time." He turns and runs down the hallway as fast as he can, following her scream. "I won't let my mother die again!"

He's gone in the blink of an eye leaving everyone bewildered.

"Mother...?" is the only word on their lips now.

*****

Fry grabs the doctor and throws him against the wall head first, knocking him out. He drops the scissors and a sinister smile crosses his face as he gently places his left hand on Leela's throat. She is too scared to even scream from the pain now.

******

Skyler runs down the hallway with gun in hand, peeking in every room. A security guard spots him and calls for backup as he begins pursuit.

****

Fry bends over and whispers into Leela's ear in a voice not belonging to him; but the voice that has haunted her nightmares, a voice she has tried desperately to forget, "And so ends the life of The Other."

His hand grips tightly around her throat. She can't breathe, can't scream, she can barely move now. He just stand there laughing as he sees her dieing by his hands.

The door is kicked open and Skyler leaps in and fires five shots at him. Two hitting him in the chest, on in the left side of his face, and the other two blast open the window. The image of Fry is no replaced by a shapeless black smoke but the red glowing eyes remain.

Bereave's voice bellows out, "This is not over!" This smoke flies out of the window and vanishes.

Skyler drops the gun and turns to Leela who's monitor is at the verge of flatlining. She isn't breathing. He opens her mouth and begins performing CPR just as several security guards come running in.

"We need a doctor in here!" shouts one of them. The rest of the crew are already at the door and a doctor pushes his way through and makes it to a still unconscious Leela. With one last breathe, a crying Skyler begs for his mother to come back. Her eye opens, she coughs and gasps for air. A security guard tries to subdue him but Leela speaks up.

"Let him go! He saved my life!" The pain suddenly gets to her again.

"You're almost there! Just one more push!" coaxes the doctor.

She screams in agony as she gives her all into one final push. All is silent for what feels like an eternity and Leela fears the worst. The smiling doctor stands with the baby in his arms.

"Congratulations! It's a beautiful baby girl."

Skyler looks up with a very perplexed look on his face, "A girl?"

**********************************

Well everyone, here's the latest chapter. I tried to make this one longer so it could make up for how long you've all had to wait. I've been waiting 6 years to write these chapters and I'm so excited to finally get to them. I am really pleased with how this one came out (came out better than I ever thought it would) and I hope you all enjoy it as well. Now, what is it I usually say here? Oh yeah...

TO BE CONTINUED...

Buddies