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PEEL - The Futurama Message Board    Melllvar's Erotic Friend Fiction    death clock, time zone change « previous next »
Author Topic: death clock, time zone change  (Read 12351 times)
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Ralph Snart

Agent Provocateur
Near Death Star Inhabitant
DOOP Secretary
*
« Reply #120 on: 11-03-2007 12:52 »

I like your story but get kinda queasy when Leela is outright cruel.  Granted she has a poorly controlled temper, has been known to jump to conclusions and not be trusting.  Something major would have to happen for her to forget Fry's sitting by her side when she was given up for dead and for writing an opera for her.  Even then I couldn't see her being that unforgiving and cruel to him.
Archonix

Space Pope
****
« Reply #121 on: 11-03-2007 12:59 »

@ralph: Ah-hah!  wink

Yeah I've been thinking the same way, it's pretty hard to deal with a story that portrays close friends as suddenly at loggerheads, but there's obviously a very good reason for it lurking in there somewhere, so it's something you just have to grin and bear.  smile Or stop reading, and then spend the rest of your live wondering what the reason was...
kaotik4266

Delivery Boy
**
« Reply #122 on: 11-03-2007 18:27 »
« Last Edit on: 11-03-2007 18:27 »

Damn! Just missed my first TOTPD! Oh well. I'll just have to do a BOTPD for my last post.

Too true, Archonix!

*Insert vehement (checks dictionary.com for spelling. Corrects spelling) praise of update here* (Not up to writing actual praise due to jet lag - it's either 8:55AM or half past midnight depending on which clock I look at   puke )

   
Quote
Yeah, go ahead and tease me about the 'cliffhangers'.
Tease, tease, tease! Seriously, though, that's not a cliffhanger. That's torture! Evil cruel torture! :P

   
Quote
And I'm now kicking myself for not thinking of that possibility. Then again, I'm not perfect...yet.
But getting there!    wink
THM

Bending Unit
***
« Reply #123 on: 11-04-2007 12:36 »

 
Quote
Quote
And I'm now kicking myself for not thinking of that possibility. Then again, I'm not perfect...yet.
But getting there!     wink

*takes well-deserved bow*

Well, mostly I'm spitballing, based on what clues are available - or at least the ones I've noticed. I fully expect to be waylaid by agents of JustNibbln' if I get too close...

*looks around*

 big grin

'Naked ladies, naked ladies, naked ladies, naked ladies!'

- Justice Snoop Dogg, Into the Wild Green Yonder
Sine Wave

Liquid Emperor
**
« Reply #124 on: 11-04-2007 14:43 »

Yep, it got worse.

kaotik4266

Delivery Boy
**
« Reply #125 on: 11-04-2007 15:11 »
« Last Edit on: 11-04-2007 15:11 »

   
Quote
Originally posted by THM:
 *takes well-deserved bow*

Well, mostly I'm spitballing, based on what clues are available - or at least the ones I've noticed. I fully expect to be waylaid by agents of JustNibbln' if I get too close...

*looks around*

    big grin


Well, my philosophy is as follows:
member of this site, therefore fan of Futurama, therefore getting pretty close to perfect. Also, I may have been suffering a temporary bout of madness!
    laff     laff

Also, interesting speculation, Sine Wave. That wouldn't surprise me. Perhaps...
Just my two cents to your dollar.     wink
THM

Bending Unit
***
« Reply #126 on: 11-04-2007 18:51 »
« Last Edit on: 11-04-2007 18:51 »

My god, I've unleashed a monster. *grins*

Sine Wave, that's not a bad theory; kaotik4266 too, for that matter. Of course, there's only one person here that can clear things up...     big grin

But yeah, one thing's for sure; whatever this is, it runs deep. How deep, we have yet to discover.

As to what that is:


'Naked ladies, naked ladies, naked ladies, naked ladies!'

- Justice Snoop Dogg, Into the Wild Green Yonder
Ralph Snart

Agent Provocateur
Near Death Star Inhabitant
DOOP Secretary
*
« Reply #127 on: 11-04-2007 23:10 »

Maybe I smell the return of... Alkazar?
Kryten

Space Pope
****
« Reply #128 on: 11-04-2007 23:13 »

It could be thta Gary is just... Gary. Not someone sinister at all.
Sine Wave

Liquid Emperor
**
« Reply #129 on: 11-04-2007 23:26 »

Inconceivable!


Seriously though, I'm sorry for unleashing that beast. I'm just going to sit back and wait for JN to tell us what happens next.
Xanfor

DOOP Secretary
*
« Reply #130 on: 11-04-2007 23:57 »

 
Quote
Originally posted by Sine Wave:

I'm just going to sit back and wait for JN to tell us what happens next.

That's boring. You're a boring person.  tongue

Leela's mean, yadda yadda. She was redeemed in JN's first fic, she'll be redeemed here. Unless, of course, he's going for the shocking twist. No, wait, I bet he'll do both! Yes, both, that's brilliant!

[/small]

kaotik4266

Delivery Boy
**
« Reply #131 on: 11-05-2007 01:11 »
« Last Edit on: 11-05-2007 01:11 »

   
Quote
Originally posted by *Kryten*:
It could be thta Gary is just... Gary. Not someone sinister at all.
   
Quote
Originally posted by *Sine Wave*:
Seriously though, I'm sorry for unleashing that beast. I'm just going to sit back and wait for JN to tell us what happens next.
Xanfor's right! What's the fun in that? Half the fun of a good story is speculating on what will happen! (The other half is finding out how wrong you were). Nevertheless, the only cure for rampant speculation is answers. Subtle as a chainsaw, I am!    tongue

Also,
 
Quote
Correct on both counts!   wink
km73

Space Pope
****
« Reply #132 on: 11-05-2007 03:47 »

Damn, JN has spurred quite a discussion here. I guess that's what a good mystery will do.

 
Quote
Originally posted by Sine Wave:
 I'm just going to sit back and wait for JN to tell us what happens next.

My sentiments exactly.  tongue However...

To get in on the spoiler frenzy:

JustNibblin

Bending Unit
***
« Reply #133 on: 11-05-2007 04:18 »

*cough*

Sorry to interrupt, but thought I should post some comments before posting the next updates.

First, I'm really flattered that such a sharp group of PEELers is sniffing around, suspicious of a plot.  I guess it's high time I came up with one.

But seriously, after this post I'm not going to respond to any speculations, be they close or completely off the mark.  Some of you are starting to hunt as a pack, and one poster I think may have caught a faint scent in the wind.  Several of you have posted very creative ideas and/or insightful comments, and I think over the next three updates some of you will probably get a good idea of where things have been and are heading.  As that happens, I sure would appreciate your continued use of spoiler fields.  But I think it's fun to try to keep folks guessing as much as possible, and me shutting up is my only chance of achieving that.

Second, in an ideal world one should let the fic speak for itself, but the problem with sci-fi fanfiction is that it can be difficult to tell whether something truly strange is going on, or whether bad characterization is going on, or perhaps both.  Especially from a writer with such a short track record.  Since the start of this story I've been worried that the next two updates will drive some readers off.

So from this point on, if you've been kind enough to read this far, I ask you to commit to reading at least the next three updates.  Even if you feel a sinking feeling in your stomach that we're marching into 'turgid dreck' territory.  Even if it seems I've gone through a the looking glass into BadFanFictionLand. 

*hedonismbot* You know the ones that I mean. *hedonismbot*

You can quit after the third update after this, but remember you once you start reading it, you can't unread it.

I'll end by saying that the premise for this fic takes inspiration from several sources, most prominently from two U.S. Academy-award winning films.  So I sense there is a good story, here, the only question in my mind is whether I can write it convincingly.

So from this point on I'll try to speak only through the story.  As for the next update, it's just about ready, but as you might suspect, it's (one of) the key turning points of this (mis)adventure, and I wanted to take extra time on this one.

Thanks!
I can't respond to everyone right now but...

SW: welcome back, buddy! I missed you! km73 misses you too.  wink  So I'm a shipper, eh?  Keep telling yourself that.

Xanfor! Ralph Snart! Shippy lurkers! Xanfor, my good chum, you're going to hate what's coming.  But you're going to continue to read.  Because you're an incurable optimist. 

And again, I appreciate that Ralph has kept reading despite the 'queasy' feeling.  It may be justified--it is very hard for me to write Leela.

km73:  Yep, the clown backed down, it looks like.  Honk, honk. 

Archonix:  Keep posting your art--love it.
Archonix

Space Pope
****
« Reply #134 on: 11-05-2007 04:32 »
« Last Edit on: 11-05-2007 04:32 »

To paraphrase Stingray, "anything could happen in the next three updates!" I'm nervous now.   smile

Don't worry about driving people away though, if it's a good story then they'll be able to see past any really bad stuff. And, for the record, you've written Leela very well.

Can't stop me speculatin'!

 
Quote
Originally posted by Sine Wave:


Sarcasm. Gotta love it.


km73 articulated what I was going to say but didn't, and I'd lean more in that direction.
Ralph Snart

Agent Provocateur
Near Death Star Inhabitant
DOOP Secretary
*
« Reply #135 on: 11-06-2007 19:36 »

I'll bite.  I'm hooked.  I just gotta see how Leela has a massive rage-dump and gets over this massive hate-for-Fry.

So when can we expect another installment of this fic?
JustNibblin

Bending Unit
***
« Reply #136 on: 11-06-2007 20:25 »

 
Quote
Originally posted by Ralph Snart:
I'll bite.  I'm hooked.  I just gotta see how Leela has a massive rage-dump and gets over this massive hate-for-Fry.

So when can we expect another installment of this fic?

How about now? How's that for timing?

I'm not teasing, Ralph, promise.  Just my time is not my own these days...


_____________________________

Leela was crouching behind her dresser, which she had flipped onto its side, and was using both hands to aim a nasty looking pistol at him.  His heart sank as he saw she was still wearing the same yellow dress that he had remembered so fondly. 

He had felt many things around Leela, but he had only felt fear twice when looking at her.  The first time had lasted 14 seconds, when he had met her for the first time.  The last time had lasted 14 days, as he had watched her lie on a hospital bed.

And now-- he was surprised at himself.  He actually wasn’t scared.  He was so far past scared that all he could do was watch and idly wonder whether she would shoot him on sight, as if he were a bystander with a little money riding on the outcome.

Her eye, narrowed in concentration, widened.  And stayed wide.  Her mouth fell open, and Fry took a certain grim satisfaction in knowing he had completely caught his idol off guard.  It didn’t happen very often.

“Wake up.”  She said. He didn’t understand.  He thought he should probably say something back.  Something safe.

“Hi, Leela.  I’ve been hiding in your closet. “

He heard her knuckles crack.

“That Gary, sounds like a nice guy, huh?  Seems like an original character.  Tragic and mysterious past and all.”

She held up her wrist com, still holding the gun steadily on him with one arm.

“I was bluffing about the police, but not anymore.  What the hell are you doing in my apartment?”  Her eye widened.  “My god.  You pervert…”

“Wait,” he said.  “I only wanted this.”  And he pulled out the holophoner case, after taking out the small doll as well.  Man was he glad he had remembered to pee.  Especially since he was wearing boxers.

She looked at the two objects and hesitated.

“The holophoner?  A holomem?  You broke into here for those? Are you crazy?”

“Yes.  I mean, No.  I mean, yes to the holophoner, no to the crazy.”

“And just asking me for them was too simple a thing to do.”

The words came out of him in a rush.  “Umm, well, the last time we talked, you almost choked me, and you wouldn’t read my note and you said you would call the policepleasedontshootme...”

She opened her mouth, paused, then shut it, and stared at the quaking delivery boy, who had one eye squeezed shut.  She seemed to be struggling with herself.

“Fair enough,” she snorted.  “Something finally broke inside me when I suddenly saw you.  So if you have something to say, say it.”  And she swung her wrist thingie underneath her gun hand, ready to type.

“Um… well… I…. just … wanted… to … ask,” Fry stalled as he tried to think.

  “You’re stalling.  I should just –“ her hand hovered over the wristcom, then dropped.  “I don’t get it.  All this just for the holophoner?  After everything else that’s happened between us?”  She put her face in both hands, turning the gun away from him for a moment.  “Oh God, it’s taken me a year to get over sleeping with you in this room, and I finally think I can get a nice, semi-important guy into here without having flashbacks, and now you just stroll out of the closet like the Boogey Bot.  I’m never sleeping in here again.  I’m going to have to move to avoid therapy.”

Fry found something in this statement very intriguing.

“There’s a BoogeyBot?  It’s real?”

She put her hands down and rolled her eye, a motion he found oddly comforting.

“Of course the Boogey bot is real.”  The gun snapped back toward him.  “Why are you really here?  Oh Lord, you would have HEARD me!”  And her hand moved toward her wrist thingie again.

“Um, Leela why are you so mad—“ And then Fry’s mind caught up to the conversation, panting.  “Um. Slept together?  By sleep, you mean the other thing, right?”

“Don’t remind me.”

He dug through his memory.  He was pretty sure he would have remembered this.  He really would have wanted to remember this.  But try as he might, he couldn’t remember this.  But he knew he had to be really careful.  The next few words may be the most important words he ever said.

“Umm, did you ever once look and talk like Amy when we did it?”

Leela frowned and released the safety on the flash tube disintegrator primer.  The end of the gun started to glow.

Better try again.

“Um, was I good?”  He winced.  “I mean, what was it like?”

She opened her eye as the early morning sun peeked through the blinds.  She rolled over and realized someone was in the bed with her.  He was warm, and she started to snuggle against him.  She opened her eye and saw the back of someone’s head.  It widened as she saw the two tufts of red hair sticking out of the top.  And she felt a twitch of terror jolt her fully awake.  Oh no.  She didn’t want this to happen. She shouldn’t have gotten so smashed.  It was going to be a disaster.

 And what really scared her is she realized some part of her had wanted it to happen.  Over the past two years, after her coma, after seeing her orange-haired alternative self, and after the opera, each time she had to acknowledge a little temptation, even curiosity.  But she had known better, and had prided herself on her self-control that had preserved the best platonic relationship she had ever had.
And now she was in bed with him, which was awkward enough, but the worst part was that from what she could remember, it had been very good.  Even now she felt herself starting to fall for him, hard, and she just knew that the pain she would feel when it failed was going to be worse than anything she had ever experienced.
   He stopped snoring, rolled over, blinked his eyes, and smiled brightly, pleased with himself.  Maybe it wouldn’t end the way she knew it would probably end.


She was pausing, lost in thought.  Not yelling.  That had to be good, right?

“Um, Leela?”

She stirred.  “Obviously, you didn’t think so.”

She tried to convince herself that things were better than when they had been friends.  But now they both felt uncomfortable around each other.  She tried to probe, search out common interests, but he got frustrated so easily when she tried to talk with him on a more sophisticated or personal level.  Despite her refusal to acknowledge it, she found herself getting bored.  Worse for her self-esteem, she sensed he was getting bored.
“Want to come over tonight?” she smiled, and blinked seductively at him as he scrubbed off the laser scars from the PE ship hull, left over from their latest customer complaint.  “I’ve found an ancient earth movie called Memento, that’s supposed to be really interesting.  It starts at the middle and goes backwards.”
   Fry stopped and looked confused.  “Why would someone make a story that starts in the middle?”  He brightened.  “Wanna to go to O'Zorgnax's instead?  Amy and Bender are heading there tonight.”
   “We’ve been going out there almost every night.  I’m getting tired of it.  Sorry? Want to go dancing instead?”
   “Um, I’m not really liking it.”
   “So, now what? TV?”
   He grunted and turned his back, starting to wash the hull again. 
Love could blossom so quickly.  So why did it crumble so slowly and painfully?


“Huh?  Whadda ya mean?”

“Stop fooling with me.  Why would you be interested in the holophoner now?  You weren’t when you left.  You were interested in something else.”

“It’s like a dinner plate!  I mean, kissing her is almost scary.  I have to close my eyes just to keep me from staring at it while—you know!”
She stood in the corridor, her gift to him sitting in her hand, listening to the conversation in the locker room.  He rarely played the holophoner now, he never did much of anything except watch TV, but she had thought that the gift might respark his interest, and their relationship, if she reminded him enough about it.  So she had bought the sequel book to “My First Holophoner”, called “Holophoner for Demanding Parents,” and had been walking around looking for him, so she could force him to make something of himself.  There were also other important things to talk about, and the first serious talk had not gone well.

“Not important.  Anyway I started thinking about how I’ve wasted all these years waiting for her, how I’ve given up so much…”

She could only listen.  He was leaving?  He was running away?

 “Well, I guess this is goodbye.”

And he was kissing Amy.  And he was going to leave her stranded.  Life was hard and unfair.  She knew that.  But she had thought maybe he would be different than everyone else.  After all he had done for her he might have been different.  And a single tear fell onto the book cover, staining it…


She stood there, staring off into space, but with the gun trained on Fry as steadily as if she were a statue.  Fry didn’t dare breathe.  The little doll shook in his hand.

The motion of the doll caught her attention, and she came back to the present.

“I don’t believe you want the holophoner.  You just grabbed it when you were in there.  Put it down on the floor.”

“Why do you have it?”

“Let’s see, who has the gun?  Oh yeah, I do.  I guess I get to ask the questions.  Why the holomem?  Finally feeling guilty at last?”

“What are you talking about?  All I have is this dollie thing.  From your orphanarium place.”

She lowered the gun slightly and looked at him.

“That’s right, I forgot you’re from the Stupid Ages.  So why did you grab it?  Are you trying to fool me into thinking you really wanted these things, that you felt some regret, when all you really wanted to do was sneak in and—“

The gun was shaking slightly.

“Uhhhh, feel sorry for what?”

She snapped her gun down, huffed, and held out her hand.

“You’re right.  I’m giving you too much credit in all this.  I want you to see this anyway.  Gimme.”

Very carefully, feeling like he was being tricked, he inched toward her.  She seized the doll from his hand, and he backed away quickly.  She did something to the doll’s head.


Probably my shortest update yet, but a very long one is coming (relatively) quickly after this one, about a day or so.

Kryten

Space Pope
****
« Reply #137 on: 11-06-2007 21:55 »

Well.

Now THERE'S a twist.

“That Gary, sounds like a nice guy, huh? Seems like an original character. Tragic and mysterious past and all.”

Is his middle name "Stu"?  laff
coldangel

DOOP Secretary
*
« Reply #138 on: 11-06-2007 22:25 »

Jesus...
Sine Wave

Liquid Emperor
**
« Reply #139 on: 11-06-2007 22:41 »
« Last Edit on: 11-06-2007 22:41 »

Wha- hubbadya, mmff...

I think I can say that I'm surprised Fry lived long enough to disappear. Fortunately Leela seems to be loosening up to the idea that Fry has no idea what the heck is going on, if ever so slightly.
km73

Space Pope
****
« Reply #140 on: 11-07-2007 01:12 »

...Whoa. Yeah, what a twist. Didn't see that coming.

"The next few words may be the most important words he ever said."
"'Umm, did you ever once look and talk like Amy when we did it?'"
  roll eyes   big grin So very Fry.

The holomem - what a great idea. Now you've really left us with a cliffhanger this time.
Archonix

Space Pope
****
« Reply #141 on: 11-07-2007 05:35 »

 
Quote
Wha- hubbadya, mmff...

My words exactly.
JustNibblin

Bending Unit
***
« Reply #142 on: 11-07-2007 20:15 »

WTF?  Remember, you promised...

_____________________________ ______

Fry opened his eyes and found himself staring at the ceiling.  He struggled to remember where he was, until a flash of purple appeared out the corner of his eye.  He turned his head and saw Leela sitting in a chair, looking at him.

He smiled automatically a moment before he realized where he was.

“Leela?”

“So you remember who I am,” she said matter-of-factly.  She leaned toward him.  “Do you know who you are?”

He stared blankly at her.  “I’m me, I think.”

She took a deep breath.

“What’s your name?”

“Fry.  Phillip Fry.”

“And your grandfather’s name?”

“Um, mother’s side or father’s side?”

She sighed, looking tired.

“Don’t play with me.  Roswell.”

“Um, Fry. Phillip Fry.”

“Well, it’s you all right.  And you still remember some things.  It may not be too late.”  She leaned back in the chair and jerked her thumb to the side.  “Do you remember your partner in crime here?”

Fry looked around.  He was in Leela’s living room, lying on the sofa, and Bender was standing in a corner.

“Bender!  Aren’t you waiting outside for me?”

“Ix-nay on the ait-way, Fry.  I was simply hanging around in a dark alley, mindin’ my own business, when eyeball here leans out the window and axes me to come up here to help out.”

“Why didn’t you tell-“

“And I must say I am shocked, shocked that you are breaking into my good friend Leela’s apartment.  Though I must admit, it was pretty clever trying to go in through the window-“

“You’re saturating your sincerity simulator, Bender,” Leela said dryly.  “Better get it adjusted.”  She turned back to Fry.  “What is the last thing you remember?”

“Um.  I broke into your apartment.  Looking for the holophoner.  Hid in your closet.  And then you found me and told me, told me—“  The memory of what she had said rushed back full force and he sprang from the couch and actually walked forward a few steps before he felt dizzy again and fell to the ground.  His face lying sideways on the floor, he spotted the holophoner box and Leela’s gun lying a few feet away.

“Careful there,” Leela said, gently lifting him up.  Why was she suddenly being so nice to him?  It felt great, but somehow he couldn’t relax.  Shouldn’t she be kicking his ass right about now?

“Yeah, I’d also add that you threw up on my carpet ,” she continued, as she set him back down on the couch.  “Or more of a dry heave.  When was the last time you’ve eaten?”

When had he eaten?  Not at the dumpster.  Or at the Cygnoids pizzeria, or even at the pub—he had been broke.  In fact, he hadn’t eaten since his whole nightmare started.  No wonder he had been feeling dizzy.

“Never mind,” she added, as she saw Fry trying to concentrate.  “We’ll get you something. So I meant to ask, what was the last memory you have before you can’t remember what happened to you, over this past year?”

“How’d you know about that?  I never was able to tell you.”

“I’ve been talking to Bender.”  She looked a little sheepish.  “I guess I never gave you a chance to mention it yesterday. But after you threw up and fainted on my floor I began to suspect something strange might be going on.  And so I found Bender minding his own business outside, and we’ve had a nice discussion.  So what do you last remember?”

“We went dancing for the first time.  We danced in the street.”  An unpleasant fact emerged in his memory.  “You met Gary for the first time.”

Her cheeks colored slightly, but she said nothing.

“Well, they did a thorough job, didn’t they? Adam gets to stroll back into Paradise, innocent once more?”

“Who’s Adam?  Is that Gary?”

“Are you having strange dreams?”

Fry’s heart fluttered slightly.  How did she know?  He nodded uncertainly.

“Do you feel that something or someone is after you, but you’re not sure who or why?”

Fry’s eyes widened and he scrambled upright on the sofa.

“How-How? Can you read my mind?”

“Easy there, Fry. Bender and I think you may have had a mind wipe.  It’s illegal in DOOP territory, but available within this galaxy.”

“Mind wipe”?

“You’ve had certain memories removed.  Actually an entire block of time removed from your memory.”

“They can do that?”

“Yes, the ability to remove memories is centuries old.  But it’s still a dangerous procedure.  There are lots of side effects, including paranoia and collateral memory loss.”

“Who did this?”

“I think you did.”

Fry lay silent for a few moments, trying to absorb this last revelation.

“Why?”

Silence. 

“Bender, Fry really should have something to eat.  Would you do me a favor and run down to the 7/11 and get a few cans of Bachelor Chow?  Actually, get the self-heating one.”

“But you’ve got a lot of mold and wine in the kitchen.  Enough for two humans.”

“It’s feta cheese, Bender, and he needs something less rich.”  She sighed.  “And yes I’ll pay you.”

“Glad to be of help-“

“Step away from the purse.”  She walked over, fished out a few bills to Bender, and said, “And I’m moving the purse to a new hiding spot, so don’t bother.”

Bender hesitated at the doorway, swiveling his head to look at Fry on the couch.

“He’ll be fine.  We won’t anything until you’re back, as we discussed.”  And then Bender was gone.

Fry looked at her back as she watched Bender leave.  She wasn’t turning around.

“Leela?  What’s going on?”

“Fry, you had your memories removed because you wanted to forget some things.   Are you sure you want to hear this?”

“Tell me everything,” he said firmly.

God, she hated to remember all this, to drag herself back into the past and reopen old wounds.  But the expression of mingled confusion and fright on the red-haired delivery boy’s face was so similar to the expression he had the day he left Planet Express for good, that it was almost as if she were there again--

“But I didn’t want this.  I didn’t want this to happen.”

They stood outside Planet Express, leaning against the low wall where she had once confessed to him about her terrible loneliness at not knowing her parents.  At the time, she had been caught off guard by how much his simple-minded words had comforted her.

Now he stood in the same spot, but with a backpack on his shoulder, about to leave for good, but now instead of comforting her, every word of his stabbed.

“I didn’t really want this either.  But it’s going to happen, and it’s going to be hard, and we need to decide together what to do about it.”

“How’d it happen?”

“Well, when a man and a woman sleep together, sometimes-“

“Yeah, but I’m human and you’re-you’re not.”

Her heart skipped a beat.  He had never cared about this before.

“Well we’re close enough apparently.  But, there’s going to be—issues.  The fetus is very small.  Too small.  And she’s not going to be --normal.”

“What do you mean, normal?”

“She may be missing a hand, maybe even an entire arm.  And her lungs are going to be incomplete.”

“She’s a mutant?”

Her vision blurred for a moment as she nodded.  He didn’t have to say it that way.  What made it hard is that they’d already had this conversation three times, and it always seem to end exactly the same way.  She twisted the holophoner book with her hands.

“I really need to know if you’re with me on this. You can’t dodge it any longer.  I didn’t want it, but I’m going to go through with it.  I know that things aren’t working out between you and me and that you think I’m kind of boring—“

Her temper rose, but she tamped it down.  Not now.  There was someone innocent who needed her.

“I never told you that.  Can you read my mind?” His eyes widened in surprise.  She used to think that was cute.

“I heard you talking to Amy.  Among other things.”

“Oh”, he said.  Then his eyes nearly popped out. “Oh.”

“Yeah, not a great thing to do to me.  And normally you’d be running for your life right now.  But I’ve got to do what’s best for her.  She’s going to need tissue samples.  From me.  And from you.”

He stood there, staring, mouth open, looking like a fool.


Fry lay back on the sofa as Leela spoke.  Initially hesitant, she soon settled into a steady rhythm as she spoke of initial passion, creeping disillusionment, feeble fights, test kits in the bathroom.
Finally freed to speak, the words seemed to soothe and relieve her, all the while as they burned and scorched him.  He could only listen, and bathe in the flames. From first kiss to final breakup, it had taken only two months.  Two months.  After three years of winning her over.  That hurt.  The other Fry and Leela from the Fighting Mongoose Universe had gotten married.  What had happened here?

Turunga Leela was a proud woman.  From birth she had been surrounded by others who had told her she was worthless.  The others at the orphanage would tell her to her face.  Others, like the prospective parents who would glance at her before walking on, or the guidance counselors who pushed her into dead-end careers, were more subtle.  She had had to like herself, because no one else would do it for her.  And she was proud of herself, because she had pulled herself up with no one’s help.
   That wasn’t quite true. Before her was one person she had leaned on for help, in so many ways.  He got her the job she loved, pulled her out of a coma, had helped find her parents, had written an opera for her.  She tried to remember that as she threw her pride away and begged this frightened and nervous man to stay.  But the more desperate she became, the more he seemed to shrink away.  She could almost see the respect, the admiration he once had for her, die in his eyes.

“The doctor says that she will need frequent blood transfusions, and genetic adjustments that require lung tissue that only the parents can provide.  Both parents need to provide.  On an ongoing basis.  Or she’s going to die.”

“Lungs?  I gotta give her part of my lungs?  Forever and ever?”

Even now, she couldn’t stop rolling her eye.

“Not the whole lung, just a piece of it. And yes, for at least three years.“

“I can’t.”

“Please. I know you have it in you.”

“I didn’t want this to happen.”

“Well neither did I.”

“I can’t do this, be stuck to this, like forever.  It’s not fair.”

“Of course it’s not fair.  Life isn’t fair.  It isn’t always walking on sunshine, you know.”

“I’m really sorry, but I’ve got to go.” 

“She’s going to die if you go. Do you understand that?”

He put his chin down on his chest for a moment.

“Yes.”

And then he was gone.

It was a day she wanted to forget.  But couldn’t.


Fry didn’t dare say anything.  Leela’s hands trembled on her lap, and her eye bored into his, unblinking, an eye of judgment.  He could only stare back, mind spinning in panic.  Did this really happen?

“Leela… Bender and Zoidberg, nobody, told me about this.”

“No one except my parents knew.  I was …uncertain… about our relationship, so I made you promise not to tell Bender we were together, and the rest of Planet Express didn’t know, although Amy figured out we were dating shortly before you left.”

A secret relationship.  Figured she would do that.

“I took leave just the day before you left, when I was a month pregnant.  She was born only three months after that in the mutant hospital, premature, brain damaged, beautiful.  Apparently mutants develop quickly, otherwise she wouldn’t have survived at all.”

“What was her name?”

She really didn’t know if she had actually ever loved him.  She did know that for a long time the world looked like a thin layer of dirt had covered it, as if she were staring through a dirty windshield.  Food tasted bland, music was just a sequence of sounds, and her pregnancy was a curse, not a miracle.  She wasn’t sure that she hated him.  You couldn’t hate somebody for being what they were.  Could you?

“Eureka.  Turanga Eureka.”

“I regret to inform you, Ms. Turunga, that your daughter’s condition is caused by a genetic anomaly—caused by genetic incompatibility between you and the father.  The prognosis is terminal, unless we can somehow find the father and take a lung sample.  Would you know where the father is?”

“He left months ago.  I don’t know where he is.  He never tried to contact me.”


“And then what happened?”

Leela was silent.

…she sat up at 3 AM, listening to her daughter fight for breath, hacking and wheezing pitifully, as she fought a losing battle.  The injections from the home I.V. kit were not working.  It was hard, so very hard, for someone used to action, to have to sit there and know you could do nothing…

…the wooden box was lowered into the ground, where the mutants buried their dead.  She would go to hell before she cremated her body.  She deserved to lie here in the sewers with all the Turangas.

The coffin was so small.  It wasn’t fair.

Coward.  Murderer.


Leela had finished speaking.  The room was absolutely still.

“So I killed her?  When did I come back to do that?”

“The law doesn’t see it my way, but I think that a person can be a murderer, even if they don’t physically kill someone.  Deliberate inaction can kill just as effectively as any action.  Do you understand what I mean?”  And she looked at him.  In fact, she was focused very intently on him now.  He squirmed under the intensity of her eye’s gaze.

“Um, you meant like if a friend of mine wanted money to buy a new Xbox, and I said no I wouldn’t give it to him, and he goes out to ask another friend and crosses the street, but slips on a banana peel and falls down into the sewer, breaks his neck and dies?  No wait-wait,” he waved her off before she could speak—“no, it wouldn’t be my fault ‘cause I didn’t put the banana there, and wouldn’t.  I hate bananas.”  He thought again.

“It’s more like I’m in this desert and this other person is in the desert and they need water and I have some, but I need it to, so I drink it and they die.”  He looked again at Leela, whose face was studiously neutral.

“That still doesn’t seem right.  No, it’s like I was sitting in a hot tub in the desert and someone crawls up to get a drink of water, and I don’t give them a drink of water, even though I have plenty of it.”  He frowned. “And since I have one heart but two lungs, I guess I don’t really need that other lung, so if someone else really needed it and I said no, and no one else could give it, then yeah, I guess it would be like killing them.”  He was somewhat pleased with himself that he had worked it all out, and then realized what he had just said.

“Oh geez, I did kill her, didn’t I?”  And he stole a glance at Leela.  He was expecting anger, but instead the neutral expression on her face had transitioned into sadness.

“Part of me was hoping that you wouldn’t understand,” she said softly.
“That you left just because you didn’t fully understand the implications.  But you’ve just shown you understand right now, so you must have back then too, because I told you exactly the same statements back then.”

So she’s disappointed in me because I was too smart, Fry thought.  My world really is upside down now.

“So this is why you hate me so bad.  I left a little girl to die?”  His eyes were wet, and he couldn’t bring himself to look directly at her any longer.  He also couldn’t quite say the word “daughter”.

“Do I hate you?  That is a hard, hard question.  When you showed up yesterday and swaggered up to me without a care in the world, acting like nothing had happened, I finally hated you,” she admitted.  “I’ve tried not to hate you for a long time, that you were simply being who you were, and it was my fault for putting you in such a situation in the first place.  But no, over the past two days I found I really wanted to hurt you and wipe that grin off your face.”

She stared at him, thoughtfully.  He didn’t dare move, didn’t dare look away from her.

She leaned forward.

“As of yesterday, I finally decided that you had murdered our daughter, as completely as if you had smothered her with a pillow.  When you walked away, you knew what you were doing.  You don’t always get a lot of things, but I thought you understood that.  And you’ve proved it, just now, without me prompting you.”

The world was starting to spin around Fry again.  Had he really left someone to die and wiped his mind to forget it?

And then, to his astonishment, she sniffed, and wiped a hand on the side of her face.  The gun was still safely on the floor.

“But do I hate you now?  That’s a hard question.  A really hard question.  I find out you did this to yourself, and I just can’t hate you as much as I did.  Even if wiping your memory of her is like killing her all over again.  For at least it tells me that you felt regret about what you did.”

“You don’t hate me?”  He kinda hated him, right now.

“I can’t figure it out,” she said.  “It’s like you’ve stepped into a time machine.  It’s almost like you’re innocent again.  But somehow you can’t be.  If the same situation occurred, you’d do the same thing all over again.”

And then it was as if something had deflated in her, and she looked very, very tired.

“Oh, Fry,” she said.  “I guess I can’t really bring myself to hate you anymore.  Angry, yes.  But I also feel a little pity for you.  If anything, I also hate myself a bit about this.”  She looked at the floor. 

“Huh?”

“You were the best friend I ever had. You were always there for me.   You meant so much to me, almost as much as my parents.”
 
Two days ago Fry would have gnawed off his right elbow to hear these words.  But now he found himself wishing that she would shoot him, because that would be quicker than what was now happening.  Because somehow he knew that now she was saying goodbye.  For good.

“Not only did I lose a daughter, but I lost both my best friend and my self-confidence in my judgement.  I knew what would happen sleeping with you, but did it anyway.  I thought I had better judgment than that.  And I—we—ended up destroying something very special.”

A strand of purple hair had come loose from her normally immaculate ponytail and drifted by her eye.  Absently she swiped it away.   Fry’s heart ached.  This was too much like the woman he remembered.  Why couldn’t she yell at him instead?

He looked up at the white ceiling.  Had this really happened?  Had he really run away from a failing love life, a dying child, and wiped out the memory?  He was not one for self-reflection.  Generally in life he had been content to drift on the currents of existence and let the eddies take him wherever they went.  And he had ended up in some interesting places, hadn’t he?  He never had thought much about the future, even when he had finally found himself in it.  What would he have done if he had finally slept with Leela?  What if this had actually happened?  What would he have done?

“I just knew you’re just weren’t capable of a serious relationship, and that neither of us would be happy in a long-term relationship with each other.  That’s what I thought.  That’s what I knew.  But after my coma dreams, after seeing our lives in the alternate universe, after the opera—I started to wonder-”

He had never lasted in any relationship for long, for he was happy to escape any commitment.  Uriel, Morgan, the radiator woman--all had marched through his life and exited without leaving a mark, and he had never given them a second thought.  What would he do if he had been faced with a decision like this?  He didn’t like where his thoughts were heading.

“And even as it was happening, as our relationship sank and even as you were leaving, I couldn’t quite believe you would do it.”

“Are you sure it was me?”

A slight trace of annoyance crept into her voice.

“I was born in the 30th century, remember?  Yes of course, toward the end, as I was grasping for some hope, any hope in this relationship, I asked the Professor to test some hair and skin flakes from you, that I had snatched when trying to cut your hair.  I almost hoped that you were some clone or shapeshifting alien.  I even had the professor check that the lids to the alternate universes were locked up.  But no, I ran out of excuses for you.”

She straightened up.

“Anyway, I guess in retrospect I’m not surprised you would wipe your memory of the whole experience.  It’s the easy way out.  You usually take the easy way out of things.  Well, I don’t have that choice, and I wouldn’t take it if I could.  Removing your memories is like destroying a bit of who you are.”

She stood up, eyes dry.  She always could mask her inner thoughts quickly.

“So now what?” he said.

“First things first.  You need medical attention.”

“What?”

“Bender and I looked online while you were out.  You may be having a reaction to the memory treatment.  It’s why you awoke in a dumpster with no idea how you got here.  You may be in danger of losing more memories, and your side effects, your paranoia and dream states, are only going to get worse.  We need to get you to a hospital.”

She had always comforted him, and he looked at her with longing as he asked, “and then what?”

She couldn’t seem to meet his eyes.

“I’m sorry, but even if you get well, and can’t remember what you did, we can’t go back to the way things were.  A lack of memory does not mean a lack of responsibility. I still can’t be around you.  I remember too much when I look at you.  I now know what you are, fundamentally.  And I have to move on.  One of us is going to have to leave.  And in fairness, you have nowhere else to go.  I wasn’t lying about other job offers.  Maybe it’s time I move up from a company that doesn’t pay me anything anyway.”

“No, no, I’ll go.”  he said.   His conscience was boiling.  Did he sacrifice a family for his freedom? He was scared to look any deeper into himself, for he was scared he might find the truth.  “I’ll be OK.  You’re really happy there as a pilot.  You should go on with your life.”  He nearly choked on the words.  “Even with Gary.”

And for the first time, she smiled, a little shyly, and suddenly he felt like a burden had been lifted from his shoulders.  He wasn’t responsible any longer.  Someone else would figure things out.

“I’m sorry it worked out like this,” she said, “but it’s the way it has to be.”
 
Archonix

Space Pope
****
« Reply #143 on: 11-07-2007 20:29 »

Memento. Nice.
JustNibblin

Bending Unit
***
« Reply #144 on: 11-07-2007 20:42 »

 
Quote
Originally posted by Archonix:
Memento. Nice.

Actually, it never won an Academy Award.  Should have.
Archonix

Space Pope
****
« Reply #145 on: 11-07-2007 21:19 »

Good films never do these days.

To be honest I had my heart set on the whole clone idea, but the way you've twisted this is interesting. Actually, right now, I'm starting to get a bit of a Fight Club vibe as well. And another film... can't remember the name... anyway, it'll be interesting to see how this plays out.
coldangel

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« Reply #146 on: 11-07-2007 22:12 »

This is really heavy stuff..
Sine Wave

Liquid Emperor
**
« Reply #147 on: 11-08-2007 00:01 »

Well *expletive deleted*.

coldangel

DOOP Secretary
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« Reply #148 on: 11-08-2007 00:08 »

It seems VERY out-of-character for Fry to
and then
If it was really his doing, then I hate him.
Xanfor

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« Reply #149 on: 11-08-2007 00:51 »
« Last Edit on: 11-08-2007 00:51 »

 
Quote
Originally posted by JustNibblin':

Xanfor, my good chum, you're going to hate what's coming.

Actually, I don't. You see, at the very worst here, you've committed an original variant of Kenneth White. That's right. (He's actually another fanfic writer in the Futurama fac community. Goes under the name Kif White on PEEL. Wrote and and is currently still writing a fanfic entitled 'A Past With No Future'.)

Now, let me clarify meself and what I mean. Most fanfics can be read as though they were a Futurama episode, as you probably know. These are the fics in which bad characterisation is prone to showing up, and in which I would be shipping Fry and Leela. Like your first fic. Gave you a bit of a hard time, didn't I?

But in 'A Past With No Future', White attempted to change things, uniquely and originally. In fact, by about halfway through, I was no longer shipping Fry and Leela. I was shipping Fry and Sibella. Why? Because it was still in character! Leela was still in character. Fry was still in character. It wasn't canon Futurama, but it was canon Futurama characters.

That should be a technical term, methinks. Kenneth White: The act of writing a fanfic using the characters of a TV show in-character while realistically overhauling the whole of their interrelations and dynamics.

So what I'm trying to say here is: Yes, these are the characters I've known and loved. But considering the 'Memento'-style of the plot, no, I do not know who they are now. How did they get from the 'past them' to the 'present them'?

Questions in point:


But the fic is still well written. I don't hate it. By opting to use your innovative pseudo-Kenneth White technique, you've absolved yourself of my shippy wrath. Doesn't mean I won't start 'hating' it simply because of a depressing storyline.

You're borderlining, to be sure.

But I'll wait to see what you've got planned.

In the meanwhile, I'm gonna go read something similar, but more happy...

 
Quote
But you're going to continue to read. Because you're an incurable optimist.

Apparently I've gotta be, ain'I?  wink

km73

Space Pope
****
« Reply #150 on: 11-08-2007 08:18 »

I haven't seen either Memento or Fight Club.  frown
So I guess I don't get any references to those that might be here.

Your writing is lovely, and this storyline is gripping, but as Xanfor says, it's obviously pretty far from Futurama canon. I can see how you fear that might deter some people from reading it, but the plot is definitely compelling enough to compensate for the 'depressing' factor.

Xanfor

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« Reply #151 on: 11-08-2007 08:45 »
« Last Edit on: 11-08-2007 08:45 »

 
Quote
Originally posted by km73:
I haven't seen either Memento or Fight Club.

Here and here. No, wait, sorry, I meant here and here. Sorry, I'm sorry, I've got it now, I've got it now, it's here. And here. D'oh!

 
Quote
but as Xanfor says, it's obviously pretty far from Futurama canon.

Futurama story canon, that is. However, it's got the Futurama characters to a T. (I'm alluding, of course, to a T-square...)

 
Quote


km73

Space Pope
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« Reply #152 on: 11-08-2007 08:51 »

 
Quote
Originally posted by Xanfor:
 

Kryten

Space Pope
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« Reply #153 on: 11-08-2007 13:22 »

I dunno... it seems way, way out of character that someone who has proven repeatedly that he'd die for someone wouldn't be willing to give up a piece of lung for his own daughter.
Ralph Snart

Agent Provocateur
Near Death Star Inhabitant
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« Reply #154 on: 11-08-2007 13:27 »

Ditto on Krytes.

It's forming to be an interesting tale, but it's pegging the "Off Character" meter to the hilt.

For a guy who threw himself in front of a enraged Spacebee to protect Leela, even if he felt 'trapped' by having a deformed baby, he would still do what he had to for her, if anything for Leela's sake.

Leela wouldn't need a gun to make Fry go anywhere, she could physically do it herself.

Still, don't let this stop you from writing - I want to see where this is going (and where it started.)
Ralph Snart

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« Reply #155 on: 11-09-2007 12:52 »

Okay, it's been almost 40 hours... Where's our update?

(Nothing like a little pressure to increase productivity.  At least that what my management thinks.)


Ralph 'Impatient' Snart
THM

Bending Unit
***
« Reply #156 on: 11-09-2007 13:09 »
« Last Edit on: 11-09-2007 13:09 »

*reads the latest two updates*

Daaaamn...

*is floored*

I mean...daaaamn. That was worth waiting for. (I was on vacation this week.)

To go from hiding in the closet to finding out that...I can see why Fry wouldn't like himself a lot right now; I'm not sure I do, either - if it's true. (I have an idea about that; see the spoiler space below.)

The shipper in me is annoyed that the relationship failed, but really, it makes sense; neither of them were going to make massive changes just because they were together, and not every couple that are 'good for each other' or 'meant to be together' actually work.

The way Fry acts as regards poor little Eureka does seem OOC, but that, and what happens right at the end suggest something:


JustNibblin', you are a star at this. Whether any of my theories are correct or not, you have me hooked. It'd be a shame to see Leela/Fry go by the board, but you've done a masterful job of coming up with a reasonable explanation of why it might fail. Please say you're updating soon!   smile

'Naked ladies, naked ladies, naked ladies, naked ladies!'

- Justice Snoop Dogg, Into the Wild Green Yonder
Xanfor

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« Reply #157 on: 11-09-2007 15:48 »

 
Quote
Originally posted by km73:

km73

Space Pope
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« Reply #158 on: 11-09-2007 17:24 »

 
Quote
Originally posted by Xanfor:
 

Oh, I understand what you mean. I guess I'm just being optimistic, too, in that I'm assuming that JustNibblin' has some redeeming factor worked out. We should probably leave him alone, though...

'Memento' sounds fascinating, but confusing as hell.

@Ralph: Sheesh, have some patience!  smile

Finally, 'cause I can't resist:

Ralph Snart

Agent Provocateur
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« Reply #159 on: 11-09-2007 17:41 »

 
Quote
@Ralph: Sheesh, have some patience! 

[Sals]NEVERS![/Sals]
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