Title: If You Build a Better Monkey (7)
Spoilers: Takes place after "But for the Grace of Ron".
Feedback: Some of you have been extremely helpful, and I hope you'll continue to do so. New reader opinions are encouraged too!
Disclaimers: Kim Possible, Ron Stoppable, Shego, Wade, and all other characters from the Kim Possible television series belong to Disney, its television production arm, and the creators and producers of the animated series. All original characters are my invention. I seek no profit from writing this, and expect none.
Summary: Their relationship for once secure, Kim and Shego follow a lead to central Africa, where Monkey Fist and a new ally believe that with their new and improved minions, the world will beat a path to their door.
"So, can I escort you two lovely ladies - AND this fine strapping boy you have - to the hangar where the SAFO is docked?" James Possible asked once he returned to his office and found Dr. Director there with his wife.
"Probably a good idea," Dr. Director said. "We wait too long, and Thomas gets bored. And a bored Thomas is not something this building is equipped to handle."
"Is he still rebuilding your electronic appliances?" Mrs. Dr. Possible asked her.
"My electric toothbrush was sacrificed the other day," Betty Director sighed, "along with the blender. They're in the garage, living their new life together as a custom-made set of power tools. On the other hand, those tools would probably cost several hundred dollars even at Smarty Mart, so you can't fault his economics."
"At least there's that," her friend murmured. "The boys still prefer creating things they can promptly destroy. I look at it as Drew Lipsky's just deserts - my children ended up being better at building death rays than him."
"Rocketry has a long and proud history in the military, Holly," James reminded her.
Holly Possible smiled tightly. "We're trying to get them to explore other careers than weapons designers, remember dear?"
Dr. Director chuckled. "Perhaps they could work for their sister one day," she said. "Explosives experts do come in handy."
"One world-saving child per family, Betty," Holly told her.
They began walking toward the elevators, but Mrs. Dr. Possible dropped back and pulled Betty, along with the stroller, with her. "You go on ahead, James," she said. "Girl talk between friends. You know how it is."
"Indeed," he said wryly. "Pretend I'm not here."
"So," Holly Possible asked once he was several feet ahead. "I hope Thomas didn't wreak TOO much havoc in James' office."
"He never bothered," Dr. Director said. "He found a new friend in the hallway." She described their encounter with Vivian Porter and her robotic assistant Oliver.
"Something's bothering you," Holly realized. "I caught a look in your eye when you mentioned Oliver. I've met him - or it - once or twice. Thomas would have been perfectly safe around him."
"Oh, it's not that," Betty said. "It's just that - is it possible he knew Oliver was a robot?"
"You didn't know. How could he?"
"I don't know how. But he seemed awfully intrigued by Oliver," Betty replied, worried. "Like he knew that man ran on metal parts instead of a beating heart. What if he sensed something? Holly," she said gingerly, "what about the implants in his brain? We know those have something to do with him being a technological prodigy. What if they enabled him to detect Oliver's true nature?"
Mrs. Dr. Possible thought for several moments before she answered. This had rapidly moved beyond "girl talk" and into the realm of "doctor-parent discussion". She had been the first neurosurgeon to examine the boy, back when he was Thomas Ronald Acceptable and not Thomas R. Director. She had concluded that Mrs. Acceptable, through some wizardry she couldn't possibly comprehend, had wedded Thomas' brain tissue to the cybernetic implants with such complexity that surgery to remove them would kill the child without question.
Of course she had encouraged Betty to get a second opinion, and a third as well, but the result was inevitable. Thomas would have to live with those implants, probably for the rest of his life. They'd been designed to enable his brain to "link" to computers, thus creating the kind of artificial intelligence that even machines like Sadie and Sappho, with all their personality, couldn't match. Possibly this was why he was so fascinated by machines, why he already seemed to know their inner workings even better than Dr. Possible knew the brain's, why he could mix and match their parts like some mad genius.
The word "mad" could not be avoided. There was literally no telling what having those implants in his brain would do as he grew older. Insanity was a definite possibility. Or, worst of all, they might just kill him one day.
"It could be," Holly Possible admitted finally. "I don't know one-tenth of what I need to know about how his brain works. Not to sound clichéd, but anything's possible - for Thomas Director's mind, that is."
"I see," Betty Director murmured.
"On the other hand," Holly said quickly, "there's no reason to worry. Even if that IS the reason he was so intrigued by Oliver, what's the harm? If he was older, he probably would have been more fascinated by Dr. Porter," she added, trying to change the subject.
"She is very pretty," Betty said.
"Pretty? You're underestimating her," Holly answered. "I think James stopped paying attention to her looks a long time ago, but I've seen her at holiday functions here, and there are a lot of middle-aged men who work here who obviously have been crushing on her all this time."
"She mentioned Kim helped her out of a problem once," Betty remembered. "Do you know what that was about?"
Holly thought back. "One of her colleagues accused her of stealing his designs. It turned out he was the thief, trying to steal credit for her work."
"I can't imagine why she needed Kim's help," Betty said. "Even as the head of GJ, word of V.F. Porter's reputation reached me. Surely James would have known - "
"He would have," Holly Possible interjected, "if he had known who she was. But Vivian had allowed people to think she was merely a lab assistant when she started working here."
"Why on earth would she do that?"
"Apparently Vivian had some bad experiences when she was younger. People saw her beauty and couldn't take her seriously, no matter how intelligent she was," Mrs. Dr. Possible explained.
"She overreacted when I asked her a simple question about her field of expertise," Betty recalled. "Now I understand why."
"That happened to me the first time I met her," Holly said. "Even now she's very insecure. I think she believes that everyone who meets her for the first time assumes she's a stereotypical 'dumb blonde'. Of course, everyone here knows that's the furthest thing from the truth."
"That's true," James said, and the two women discovered that, even as slow as they were going, they'd caught up to James as he waited for the elevator. "Still, even after the incident with Dr. Fen, she had her work cut out for her."
"What does that mean?" Dr. Director asked.
"Well, she'd basically lied about her identity to the other scientists, so they were a little skeptical of her." Then he glanced around. "Also, there was the matter of her dress," he added quietly.
"She dressed like a singer in one of those pop music videos. Who was that girl Kimmie met once?" James asked his wife. "Chrissy? Tiffany?"
"Britina," Holly told him, always a bit more tuned into pop culture than her husband.
"Right, Britina," he said. "It was a bit hard to take her seriously when she underdressed like that. I considered speaking to her about it, but I was afraid she might interpret my comments as harassment. Fortunately she figured it out on her own."
Dr. Director looked at him. "Why James, you're not a half-bad administrator after all," she said.
"Lucky me," he sighed.
"Anyway," Mrs. Dr. Possible said as they got out of the elevator a minute later and once more allowed James to take the lead, "Vivian has been an object of fantasy for some of the single men here for some time. And as long as she remains single, that will probably continue."
"Single?" Betty asked, surprised. "Brains and beauty? I would imagine she has a flock of suitors."
"Not when you still assume that men are only interested in you for your body," Holly pointed out. "Also, she's apparently one of those scientists who goes fifty hours without leaving her lab. Like someone who shall remain nameless until I got him to change his habits."
"Says the woman who operates on her patients for ten hours straight," James' voice floated back to them, and Holly turned slightly pink.
"Whatever her personal life is," Betty said, "I'm just glad that it wasn't just my big mouth when I offended her earlier."
"Yes, I think that's just a rite of passage for visitors here," Holly said. She glanced at Betty Director and shook her head slightly.
"What?" Betty asked.
"Nothing." But privately Holly thought that Vivian and Betty had something in common - both women were attractive and intelligent, yet allowed their beliefs on how others perceived them to keep them single. Only whereas Vivian thought everyone saw her as just another pretty face, Betty was convinced that a woman with one eye and one ear was not dating material. Holly had attempted to change her mind when she heard Betty say that, but her friend seemed resigned to letting her life revolve around her son and her work. "I'm just out of things to say about Vivian Porter."
"Then let's close the discussion on her and her robot, and focus on this SAFO and how she helps your daughter."
"Sappho" proved to be an amazing craft, and one oddly taken with Shego, Dr. Director thought. It had been disappointed when it learned Shego was not with them. When machines began preferring certain humans over others, it became hard to draw the line at where programming ended, and a soul began.
"And aren't you sweet?" Sappho laughed as the Possibles and Dr. Director finished their tour of the spaceship and exited through the hatch. The glowing white orb that served as its "eye" and "mouth" when it communicated with people outside the ship extended on its cable and lowered itself into the stroller where Thomas lay.
"Er, Sappho, that might not be such a good idea," Dr. Director said. She didn't want her son to work his magics on Team Possible's sole aircraft.
But Thomas only smiled as Sappho's eye briefly touched his forehead and pulsated softly. Sappho chuckled and pulled back. "He's quite the charmer," she said.
"He's a beautiful boy," Mrs. Dr. Possible agreed.
"Smart too. He was telling me how much he liked my design."
Dr. Director and the Possibles looked at each other, then back at the spaceship. "No, he didn't," Dr. Director said. "He doesn't even talk yet."
"Well, he was talking to me," Sappho said.
"He didn't speak!"
"I heard him perfectly fine. I've never met a human who spoke binary so well. Come to think of it," Sappho added, "I've never met a human who spoke it at all."
Dr. Director just stared. It seemed the only one who couldn't speak was her.
"Tired?" Kim asked that night as she lounged on Shego's bed. Her quarters were at least clean, but still short on furniture.
"Not really," Shego said casually. "Although you must be exhausted, trying to teach Ron Stoppable how to fight."
"Maybe if your teaching skills were a little better."
Shego just laughed. She stripped down to her underwear and cast the green-and-black catsuit aside before slipping on light green cotton pants. Her black sports bra would be the only thing covering her above the waist, Kim knew, having shared a bed with her several times.
Although they'd never shared a bed for the purposes of making love, and Kim found herself wondering when that was going to come.
"I'll have you know that Ron is catching on very quickly to some Japanese martial arts skills he requested studying," Kim said. "He's in the best shape of his life, you know."
"Good," Shego said. "He'll need that when Monique pulverizes him next month."
"So you say," Kim said dryly. "But I think I'll be seeing you in cargo pants and a turtleneck before long, Shego."
"As if," Shego replied smugly. "At least you won't have to go far when it's time to dress like me next month. I'm sure you haven't forgotten how to put it on."
Kim blushed. This wager wasn't about her not LIKING Shego's chosen outfit. It felt nice against her body, it didn't interfere with her during the mission, and of course Shego looked drop-dead gorgeous when she wore it. Like always, it was about the competition. It was about Shego seeing herself in Kim's mission clothes next month and being reminded that this round, at least, belonged to Kim.
Even though they were no longer enemies and consequently were no longer trying to hurt each other, Kim and Shego competed with each other even more than in high school, by virtue of the fact that they spent so much time together. It was something Kim might have expected from a rival or a sibling, not her girlfriend.
But then, it wasn't about beating each other, not really. In many ways Shego was the standard against which Kim measured herself, and Kim knew Shego felt the same way about her. Their endless cycle of challenging each other and sparring with each other was about becoming even better, and being the very best would always matter a great deal to both women.
Plus, there were the bragging rights. Not to mention the way their fighting seemed to stoke the fires inside them, especially inside Shego.
"Maybe I should just turn out the light now," Shego suggested. "With you being so bushed and all."
"So not the drama," Kim said, lying on her side as Shego climbed onto the bed next to her. "I could go all night if I had to."
There was an evil look in Shego's eye that hadn't been there a second ago.
"Really?" Shego drawled. "All night?"
"Uh-oh," Kim thought.
Shego got onto her knees and, without warning, pushed Kim by the shoulder. She rolled onto her back but, before she could go on rolling right off the side of the bed, Shego had clambered on top of her. Her thighs straddled Kim's waist, and she looked down at Kim with a predatory air.
"Hey!" Kim said warningly.
"Don't make promises you don't expect to keep," Shego said, holding Kim's shoulders down. Her waves of dark hair cascaded around her face and hung before Kim's eyes. "And you shouldn't say things like that and not expect me to - answer."
"You've been training Monique for four hours," Kim said. "By now you'd take it as an invitation if I offered to make you a sandwich."
Shego frowned. "Monique's very talented," she said.
"I know that, Shego. This isn't about the bet."
"I know that," Shego snapped. "What I mean is - she's very good, and teaching her is a lot more fun than teaching Junior how to pull off one measly heist. And there were a few thieves and muggers along the way . . ."
"Wait, you mean the villainess Shego actually helped fight crime tonight?" Kim asked slyly.
"The creeps didn't see me," Shego said with a sniff. "I was very stealthy. It was a good object lesson for the Oryx. People always wondered why a thief would wear such bright colors. Any clown can dress in black and hide in the shadows. But for someone to dress in an eye-catching shade of green and still be a master thief - that's a mark of stealth. Oryx saw that Icould dress like the lead singer in a hair band and still avoid notice. Stealth isn't about lighting or clothes. It's about knowing how to use your body."
"Bite me. Anyway, as I was SAYING, I was fighting all night, and it was fun. But - it's not the same as when I fight with you," Shego admitted. "There's something missing. So I suppose I'm a little frustrated right now."
"Hence the being on top of me," Kim said.
"Precisely. It would be useless to fight me on this."
Kim just lay there, smiling.
Shego scowled at her. "You're not fighting me on this."
"You said it was useless."
"Since when do YOU ever give up?"
"Well, ask yourself this, Shego," Kim murmured. Shego had barely moved for the past couple minutes, and the proximity was starting to make Kim quite aroused. "While I'm sure us fighting for control right now would be quite the turn on, would it be more or less of a turn on if I just lay here and allowed you to have your way with me?"
Shego chewed on her lip unconsciously as she thought it over. "There would be that nice feeling that comes from winning," she admitted, grinning wickedly now. "Taking my prize."
Kim moved her arms slightly and rested her hands on Shego's thighs. "And what if the prize was . . ." she whispered, and then stopped.
She couldn't believe she was doing this.
"Was what?" Shego asked quietly.
Kim closed her eyes for a moment before reopening them and looking into Shego's face. "My virginity."
Strangely, suddenly, all thoughts of sex fled from Shego's mind. She could only stare in shock. "You're a virgin?" she finally asked.
"Come on, Shego," Kim said, sounding a lot less nervous than she felt. "You said it yourself. When do I ever give up? How easily do you think I'd give up THAT?"
Shego shook her head. "Not easily at all," she mumbled.
"Shego," Kim said, "remember when the Supreme One came? And we were both panicking that if she disappeared, we'd disappear from each other's memories?"
"I wouldn't say I was panicking," Shego said defensively.
Kim just waited.
"Maybe a little," Shego admitted.
"Well, I also remember the moment after the Supreme One went into the portal," Kim said. "I remember how frightened I was that you were gone. And then the relief that flooded in when I found you . . . Shego, after all that, how could you not be the one for me?"
Shego trembled. "Kimmie," she whispered. "You - you can't want me. Nobody's ever wanted me."
"I don't want you," Kim agreed. "I need you. Don't you think it's been long enough?"
"I've - "
"I've been wanting to do this for weeks," Shego said.
Kim smiled. She realized how deeply she felt the words she'd uttered, and they washed much of the nervousness away. Her right hand moved up and tugged at the waistband of Shego's pajama pants. "Then why don't you come down here and take your prize?" she asked. "I promise you, you'll never win one like it."
"Never one more precious," Shego murmured, and this was as much a cause of the thrill that ran through Kim's body as was the way Shego's lips suckled at the base of her neck before moving up and kissing her demandingly.
This was when the Kimmunicator was supposed to go off, Kim thought dimly as Shego devoured her lips, allowing her hands to run up and down Shego's arms. This was when Ron burst in and saw something he'd never wipe from his brain until he died. This was when the interruption came.
Except it didn't.
"I guess the good karma finally paid off," Kim thought just before her ability to think left her completely.
To be continued . . .
Author's Note - What, you thought this scene would keep going? This is PG-13, remember:D
I've seen so many names given for Kim's mother, but I'm almost positive that the show has never stated what her first name is. I went with Holly because it sounds like 'wholly'. Get it? Hardy-har.