Story: Fears and Favors (chapter 1)

Authors: A Markov

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Chapter 1

Title: Working for a living

[Author's notes:

Wade checked the data once more; the answer was in there, he could almost taste it. Everything he needed was in front of him. He just couldn’t put it together in the right way. Eight years ago, twenty girls had been recruited by a raving lunatic trying to start her own personal army. They had all been subjected to illegal drug therapy and neural hypnotic manipulation. Now, eleven were dead and, of the eight known survivors, three had undergone brain surgery in an attempt to return them to a more normal existence. The first operation had been cautiously declared a success, but only six months had passed and doctors were still worried about its long-term effects. Their fears were compounded by the lack of positive response from the other two girls who had gone through the surgery. The young ladies had shown improvement but they were not well enough to enter back into society. It had been decided to delay further operations until the reasons for success or failure could be pinned down. Nineteen of the original twenty were accounted for, and one had vanished into thin air three years ago. It was like she had been erased. No, it was more like she had only existed in the program, there was no record of her before she entered the program and no record of her after Kim’s escape had ended it. Wade tweaked his ferret program one more time. He knew the answer was there, he just had to figure out the right question.


Shego plugged the beta unit into the mainframe and began the download. Now came the part that she didn’t like. She had to stay put, waiting for the damn machine to complete its tasks. She never liked to rely on anything outside of herself and being a slave to the timing of a computer’s program irked her to no end. She checked her timer, only eighteen seconds had passed, one minute three seconds to go… if the damn thing worked right. The beta unit started beeping. She wondered if that was supposed to happen and covered it with a note pad to muffle the sound. It was too late. The door burst open and an angry red headed woman ran into the room.

“Hold it right there!”

Shego glanced at her chrono… fifteen more seconds. She let fly with a mild plasma ball to distract the woman and followed up by throwing a heavy UPS battery. The woman ducked and came at Shego from the side. Five more seconds… Shego blocked several kicks and punches while holding her ground and when her timer beeped, she caught the red head’s wrist and twisted it up behind the woman’s back.

“Don’t make me hurt you, sweetheart.”

With a scream of rage, the red head managed to twist out of Shego’s grasp but tripped over one of the desks and spilled onto the floor. The pale woman took the opportunity to grab the beta unit and make for the exit. She threw out a couple of random plasma bursts to discourage the woman from following her but it didn’t work, the red head was right on her tail when she got to the main warehouse. Shego found herself at a disadvantage in the wide-open space. She really didn’t want to hurt the woman but she was being prevented from escaping with the goods and every minute she spent in here was adding to the risk of attracting more potent law enforcement. She continued to fight defensively and look for an escape route.

The red head had her cornered and was pressing the attack. Finally, Shego powered forward with lit hands and was pleased as the woman fell back from her strength. The thief was hoping that would open a clear path but the red head couldn’t just leave it be and came back at her with renewed vigor. Shego barely managed to avoid several punches and finally, in frustration, lashed out at the red head’s knee. A cracking sound echoed in the empty room and her opponent screamed and fell to the floor, cradling a broken knee.

“I really didn’t want to do that, sweetie, but you left me no choice.”

The pale woman picked up the grappling gun that had fallen a few feet away and used it to aid her escape through a high window. Once outside, she reversed the hook, and repelled down the side of the building. An eight-foot tall chain link fence separated her from the waiting hovercraft and she vaulted it without breaking stride. Safely on her way, she checked the contents of her pouch; the beta unit had come through without a scratch. SA Thomas would be pleased; Shego just wanted to kill someone.


Ron was having a hard time with his tie. They were running late for some dance troop party thing and he had forgotten to have Rufus fix his tie before he left him with the sitter. On top of everything, Bonnie was upset with him because he had been called away from the last party they had attended to help Kim. “Bon-Bon, you’re getting upset over nothing.” He said.

“I don’t think it’s nothing; you walked out on me!”

“You know I didn’t mean to leave you…”

“…All alone in the middle of the dance floor?”

“Bonnie, we talked about this. Crime doesn’t wait until after the party.”

“What am I supposed to tell everyone when you disappear?”

“How about… ‘My boyfriend went to help Kim save the world.’”

“And spend the rest of the night answering questions about the famous Kim Possible?” The brunette paused for a moment, then continued in a wheedling voice: “Do you really know her? Isn’t she so pretty? Can you get me her autograph? Where does she shop? What’s her favorite cuddle-buddy?” Her eyes burned now as she loomed over Ron. “Like I would know or even give a rat’s ass what her favorite sushi flavor is.”

“Is this about me leaving you at a party or is it about me going to Kim?”

Bonnie crossed her arms over her chest and turned away.

Ron walked over to her and began lightly massaging her arms and shoulders. “I’m sorry, Bonnie. I know these things are important to you…”


“No buts.” He said earnestly, “They are important to you and you are important to me…”

She tensed inside, waiting for him to say it, hoping he would say it, but he didn’t say it at all. He didn’t even come close to saying it. Important to me, he said. That was almost as bad as I like you as a friend.


Say it! Say you love me! Tell me you love me!

“I… Let me do something nice for you. Your choice… Club… chick flick… fancy restaurant… whatever you want… Let me make it up to you.”

“Whatever I want?”

Ron nodded.

“Turn off the Kimmunicator.” Her voice was barely above a whisper.


“For one night… turn it off…”


“Starting right now!”

“…O.K.” He turned off the unit and tossed it over onto the end table.

“Oh, Ron.” She collapsed into his chest. It looked like they weren’t going out after all. He was going to spend the next couple of hours trying to comfort his girlfriend. Somehow he was screwing everything up. Ron put his arms around the sobbing woman and tried to figure out what he was doing wrong.


The young woman moved through her katas with strength, grace and poise. She stepped and turned in time with an unseen choreographer, performing her deadly looking ballet for a hidden audience. A man and a woman watched her from behind the one-way glass.

“She progresses well.” The woman commented.

“When will she be ready?”

“Five weeks. Will everything be in place by then?”

“I’ll be ready to move in less than that. Can we speed up her program?”

“No. She is the lynch-pin of our revenge; we will proceed on her schedule.”

The man stopped stroking the small dog in his arms and looked over at his associate, “You’re the chief.” He said, deferentially.


Shego didn’t wait for the hovercraft to come to a stop before vaulting out and heading up the ramp toward the office complex. Pushing a few of the other agents out of her way, she strode through the hallways as though she expected everyone to make room for her, and most of them did. After only three months as a freshman agent at the NSA, Shego already had a reputation for being short tempered and willing to make her points physically. She was pretty sure that this wasn’t what she had agreed to, but she had gone along with SA Thomas’ request that she undergo agency evaluation and training before she started contracting because Kitten seemed to think it was a good idea. She threw open the door to the debrief room and slammed the beta unit down on the table.

“Tell me how these assholes know enough about me to put a guard that looks like her in the building.” She demanded of the two agents waiting for her.

“What do you mean Ms. Shego?”

“The guard at the warehouse was a red haired fem.” She snapped. She had given up trying to get them to just call her Shego about three weeks into this whole thing. “I want to know how the owners of this information…” she held up the beta unit, “…knew that I was going to be coming after it and how they knew enough about me to hire a guard that looks like my girlfriend.”

“Perhaps it was just a coincidence…”

“There’s no such thing as a coincidence in this business. Your organization leaks information like a teenager on MySpace.” She pointed at the beta unit again. “It took me one minute, twenty-two seconds to download that info. You’ve got two minutes to get what you want out of that unit before I take it and walk out of this place forever.”

“Ms. Shego, please remain calm and let us debrief you. Once we have all of the pertinent information, I’m sure we’ll be able to figure out what you want to know.”

Shego noticed that even as he spoke calmly, trying to placate her, he was busily connecting the beta unit to the desktop in order to transfer the data she had brought back. She pretended not to notice that the second agent had surreptitiously depressed a signal button. She hoped he was signaling SA Thomas, because if he was calling security, a lot of people were going to get hurt on her way out. She glanced at the clock on the wall, silently counting down the two minutes. When she reached twelve seconds, the first agent unplugged the beta unit and silently handed it to her. She stomped out.

SA Thomas was waiting for her at the hovercraft. She wondered if he kept all of his suits crumpled up in a ball on the floor or just wore the same one every day.

“Ms. Shego, would you please accompany me on a walk?”

The pale woman sighed, “No Special Agent Thomas, if you want to talk to me, you’ll have to get in.” To her surprise, he did just that. She went on, “I’m not bringing you back and I’m not guaranteeing I’ll listen.”

“Fair enough.”

They rode in silence for a few minutes. Thomas pulled out a cigarette and indicated he needed a light. Shego obliged and they continued in silence. She hated to admit it but his silence was actually starting to peak her interest so she gave in and asked, “What did you want to say?”

“You’re not happy with the Agency?”

“What the hell are you talking about?” she asked sarcastically, “This is my happy face… on weekends I use it to cheer up the orphans.”

“Where do you think things could be improved?”

“You want me to list it in order of importance or alphabetically?”

“You believe you could do a better job?”

“I believe a five year old could…” She caught a glimpse of him in the instrument panel and noticed he was smiling. “No.”

That took him by surprise. “What?”

“No.” She started looking for a landing site. “I’m not doing it.”

“Doing what?”

“I’m not going to join a ‘special unit’ or an ‘elite force’ or any other damned team for you.”

“I was actually thinking of having you lead a team for me.

“That’s even worse!” She snapped, “I work alone.”

“And the work you did with Team Go?”

“Ancient history… A fluke… A mistake… In the past.” She set the craft down in the middle of an intersection. “Now get out.” She continued to stare at him impassively while the horns began to sound from all sides.



“What’s the sitch, Wade?”

“I’ve got reports of a hostage situation at a private school in Maryland.”

“That sounds like something for a professional FBI negotiator team, why call me?”

“Check out this video…”

Kim watched as the picture resolved and Senor Senior Sr. came in to focus. He was seated in a large leather armchair next to a fireplace, looking immaculate as always. “To the families of the children gathered here, I send my most sincere regrets that this action has become necessary. However, I must insist that each of you come up with ten million dollars to ensure the safe return of your children.”

“Father! This was supposed to be my chance to sing with my new band!”

“Be quiet, Junior. I am speaking with our victims’ families.”

“But Father, I do not wish for victims, I wish for an audience of rich children so that they will buy my records and I will become a huge pop star in the United States!”

“Junior, you will do as you are told. Now get back to the hostages and do not disturb me again.”

“Yes father.”

There were sounds of falling equipment and the picture fuzzed out.

“He still doesn’t have the villain thing down yet, does he?” Kim asked.

“Not quite. Your ride will be there in about five minutes. I’ll contact Ron and have him meet you in Maryland.”

“You rock, Wade.”

“I know.”



“You told me you turned that thing off!”

“I did! Wade must have activated it remotely!”

Wade’s voice came from the end table, “Ron!”

Bonnie was adamant, “Don’t you dare answer that.”

“Ron, where are you? Why is it so dark there? Do you have the Kimmunicator in a drawer? Ron?”

The blonde looked at his girlfriend and glanced back toward the table where the Kimmunicator sat, covered by his jacket. Bonnie’s eyes held something in them that he couldn’t identify. There was anger… and hurt… but something else too. He didn’t know what it was and he wasn’t sure how to react to it. If he didn’t answer Wade’s call, the computer genius would probably activate the remote roving feature on the thing and come find him and he’d be forced to answer it anyway. His eyes flicked to it once more and when he looked back at Bonnie, he suddenly understood the look in her eyes. If he answered this call, she would be gone when he came back. He remembered telling her once that he didn’t want to choose between her and Kim; her words came back to him… I can’t make you choose and I won’t even ask you to, but sometime… sometime you’re going to have to.

It wasn’t a choice he wanted to make.


[End notes:
Next Time:
Chapter 2- High School Seniors]

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