Friends, friends, I have cuddles enough for all!
Is everyone PMSing today or is it just me?
I should never have said "Don't panic" to such a contrary bunch.
I also should have followed my own advice. I, I am very, very relieved. My first reaction was in fact, a laugh, but then my natural skills as a worrier kicked into over drive. (Cuddles I)
NIC2001: Ne t'inquietes pas, mon ami! Je ne voudrais pas te stressť. Merci beaucoup pour ton offrir, mais je peux le faire moi-mÍme. Pour rťpondre aux questions:
Yes, that is my real email address.
It's 3-4 pages long.
It's due next Thursday and I haven't started it yet thanks to having a presentation today.
But don't worry about it, dear, I'm sure it will be fine.
Now, on to the lovely wonderful awesome Venus. I don't think I used the word favorite, after all, how could I choose between all these lovely people... oh wait, I did use the word- (ish thing) favoritist at some point. Oops.
Allow me to quote myself from ages ago:
Venus, I am soooo glad you're still writing (your lovely fic). (Shhh... it's a large part of my decision to post this story.)
Venus: LOL! Yes, you influenced me. So keep writing that fic!
Venus:It's always nice to have you comment, oh queen of inspiration!
See! Now don't you feel loved? Well you should!
Hmmm... how else can I reassure... oh, I know. (devious smile)
Warning: The following is not to be taken seriously and is best read when your judgment is impaired in some way. I take no responsibilty for anything I may directly be implying, so there.
Fry jumped guiltily when the hand touched his shoulder. He spun sharply, yanking off the helmet to see Leela, looking as attractive as anyone could while sporting the profondly dorkifying, electric green VR helmets necessary for wandering the internet in style. She was still very much in the real world however. There was a wry curve to her lips, playfully bearing witness to the fact that she had fully intended to startle him. Fry grinned back, despite his desperate desire to hide his latest netsplorations. The redhead felt sure that he was the only person that really noticed and appreciated Leela's rarely seen mischievous side.
"Hi, Leela!" he chirped, voice cracking just a hair, only enough to maliciously betray his nervousness.
Leela's smile grew broader. 'Ooh, boy, she's in a good mood,' Fry thought, both delighted and terrified, in a kinky sort of way.
"Hi, Fry," the cyclops returned sweetly, clearly revelling in his discomforture. "What are you doing, poking around the internet at this late hour, all alone, without the Professor's permission?"
A flurry of thoughts frantically chased each other through his head as he tried to come up with a convincing reply that wouldn't take Leela out of her unusually high spirits. Unfortunately, one of the thoughts got distracted by her closeness and tripped in an amorous haze, resulting in a massive multi-thought pile up. "Uh..." The limp, verbal expression of that spectacular mental crash staggered out of his lips and shrugged apathetically.
"Having a little late night fun?" Leela pressed him, quirking one, not remotely, solemn eyebrow, seeing as she only had the one, and Fry blushed slightly as he finally caught her implication.
"Hey, nothing like that, Leela."
"Oh, I know," she laughed, humour sparkling in her eyes. "You don't really think I'd pop in there if I thought I'd be... interrupting."
Fry couldn't help himself. "Well, you're always welcome to join me. We can make our own fun." He waggled his eyebrows at her.
Leela scoffed derisively, though she didn't lose her smile. "Nice try."
"I checked out the URL before I tapped you." Tension wrapped itself around Fry's spine. Under Leela's gleeful expression, he grimaced. So someone had finally caught him. Fry squinched his eyes shut in humiliation.
"Well, er, you know," Fry struggled valiantly to defend himself, "it was just something to do... lots of guys do it. Cool guys."
"Is that so?" she asked lightly.
"Um... yeah?" He tried to look certain, confident, and failed miserably. "It's perfectly normal. Good clean fun!" Fry couldn't bring himself to look at Leela. It was hard enough for Fry to prove his worth and general manliness to her; this would set him back at least six months. (A/N: Revised date of success if I don't get my way: August 15, 4545)
'Help me, Spock,' Fry pleaded silently.
"I have to admit I'm a little shocked. This really doesn't seem like the kind of thing you'd be in to, although it is the ultimate in the the nerdocrity," Leela mused thoughtfully, circling him in a predatory manner.
"Hey, I have other interests than just work!"
"Well, you've always struck me as a renaissance delivery boy."
"What?" Fry crossed his arms in front of him uneasily. "Leela," he whined pathetically. The cyclops shook her head and relented, mostly.
"It's just that you're barely even literate."
Fry shrugged, a smile returning to his face. "It's not really a problem. A lot of fanficion writers aren't literate either."
Now Leela did laugh as she hopped up on the round meeting table, swinging her legs childishly. "So I've noticed." Fry thought the cyclops looked beautiful.
"Fry?" she prompted him gently when he didn't say anything.
"Hmm," he sighed dreamily, "Oh, you said you noticed?" Fry blinked. "You've noticed?!" Leela was certainly full of surprises tonight.
Fry unconsciously glanced around to ensure they were alone. "So, you've read this stuff?" The cyclops bit her lip pensively and glanced away before offering a guilty smile of her own.
"Oh, here and there." With Leela's sheepish admission, some of his own embarassment faded.
"So, any particular kind?"
"Do you mean genre or fanopolis?"
"Either," he shrugged.
"I wouldn't limit myself to just one. that way lies obsession. I wouldn't want to get committed." The play on words sailed over Fry's head with an audible 'whoosh'. "You?" she asked.
"You'll laugh." Fry said firmly, hoping to put her off.
"Probably," she agreed with a grin. "Tell me anyway."
Fry tried to stall, "Uh well, there's comedy and-"
"Smutty comedy I presume," she teased.
"Best kind," Fry grinned back. It was nice to be able just to chat sometimes with the PE captain.
"Er, anything with robots. Robots are always cool."
"If you say so. I'm sure Bender would agree with you." Leela was giving him a penetrating look. "What else, Fry?" He knew with a sinking feeling that she wsn't about to let him off the hook.
"Mrmmnce," he muttered inaudibly, flushing pink.
Fry sighed heavily. "Romance," he repeated, wincing as the word came out far to loudly in the quiet room. Leela laughed.
"See!" Fry growled accusingly.
"Sorry, sorry," she apologized unconvincingly. "That's fine, Fry. Nothing to be ashamed of. It doesn't affect your masculinity in any way.
"Don't let it get back to Bender? He'd drive me out of my skull." Fry used his most endearing puppy look, not that it had proven particularly effective on Leela in the past.
"Of course not," Leela agreed and the redhead sighed in relief, "I'd have to admit reading it myself."
"Unless I sent it anonymously." She gave him a wicked smile that left him weak in the knees. Before Fry could launch into full blown panic, Leela continued, "I'm not gonna say anything, Fry. Don't worry."
"Thanks, Leela," Fry smiled back at her gratefully, but it faded quickly into a puzzled frown. "So why are you here anyway?"
Leela shrugged awkwardly. "Just checking out the stories, like you."
Fry's face lit up in sudden enthusiasm. He'd found someone he could share his illicit interest with. "There's this one show, and the hero is completely in love with this girl, but things just keep going wrong for him. It keeps me hanging on, hoping things will work out in the end." When Leela didn't respond he pressed on. "And there are all these great writers, and readers that talk about the fanfics, it's so cool! There's this guy who does all these puns, and this girl with all these wacky jokes! There's Dork-o-rama and Say That Again and Shippy Sandi and this guy who speaks some other language and Me and OldFogey and Basa and Sparkly and Unidentified and African Squirrel and JP and CrazyPatty and-" Fry was turning blue. Leela shook him 'til he started breathing again.
"All wonderful people I'm sure," Leela said indulgently.
"And Mercury, she's a writer, very mysterious. I have no idea what her real name is." Fry forced the words out in between gulps of air.
Leela sighed suddenly, irritated, and Fry winced. He didn't know what he did wrong, but he'd evidently killed her good mood. The delivery boy felt suddenly tired, no longer wanting to read the romantic stories of fictional characters luckier than he was.
"Uh, I'm kinda beat, Leela. Think I'll head home. I like to get in before Bender shuts down for the night. His personal sercurity alarm is pretty viscious. It's really better to sleep out in the hall than to tangle with the lizard.
"Alright," Leela said politely. "Goodnight then."
"G'night. See ya tommorow," Fry slurred. He shed the VR gear and, with one last little wave, departed.
"I thought he'd never leave!" The cyclops heaved an exhausted sigh, finally relaxing. She'd been deeply surprised to find Fry here at this time of night. Her cover had nearly been blown.
Leela pulled a disk out from her pocket and stepped into the internet. Out of idle curiosity she peered at the fiction Fry had been reading: "The Sting, by Mercury. Laughter bubbled up inside her.
"Oh, Fry, if you only knew!" A message popped up for Leela.
'You're gonna update soon, right?' it read.
"Oops, gotta get moving, they're waiting for me!"
'I was talking to a friend, sorry about that. Here's the latest chapter!' she messaged.
All over the internet, 'Mercury's' fans rejoiced.
Incidently, I hope you notice that all three of the stories I've posted here have been prompted by you in some way. That's a pretty good track record, I'd say, for someone who didn't get cuddles.
Oh, alright. You can have some cuddles. (Cuddles Venus, then say what now for good measure.)