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: Hooray! Not-so-newbie fanfic!  (Read 12888 times)
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Starship Captain
« #360 : 05-27-2006 06:41 »

That would explain why she is not writing back to me then...

Can't wait to see her back with us.
Thanks for the info Nerdy.

Bending Unit
« #361 : 06-17-2006 18:59 »

Whee! I'm back! I'm back! And I'm speaking english again! English! My beloved mother tongue! Oh, I've missed you all so much! I'm a little confused right now with switching back to english... it's harder then it sounds and I keep typing like it's a french keyboard then going back to edit... that's not an apostrophe Layla.

I don't really know what to say except that I'm really very very sorry for disappearing, and thanks to N-o-r for letting you know I'm still a live, and oh, I've got stories to catch up on and stories to finish too! Thanks so much for the birthday messages! It's been forever since my birthday, but even at home I'm catching up on cards and presents and tout cela. It's really inconveniant to go away for more than a month just before you have a birthday, mais c'est aussi a bit fun.

Oops, more franglais. Ah well, it adds character. I'll try to get some writing done and up this week. A chapter for Bergey to edit, presuming he's still willing (to speak to me at all even!) and at long last, the epilogue to ... er... whatever the name of that fic with the ice skating was.

Oh, and Misery Loves Company is up. I haven't gone to see it yet, but apparently it wasn't a bad story... and I wrote it too, apparently. Leela was in it. She's in most of my stories actually. Ooh, and it's actually finished an everything, that's pretty cool, eh? Oh, the glorious tresure that is English!

And if you've completely forgotten who the crazy person babbling at you is, she's harmless, so put down the silly string. Thanks beaucoup.

Urban Legend
« #362 : 06-17-2006 19:16 »

alright!  Layla's back!  whahoo!!!

Urban Legend
« #363 : 06-17-2006 19:19 »
« : 06-17-2006 19:19 »

I can't tell if your random switch to French mid post was on purpose or not, but regardless it's good to hear from ya Layls.  Je ne parle pas francais, mais je comprends.   :p

Well, I won't bother you too much yet, suffice to say you probably have loads to catch up on in the real world, nevermind this intermanet fantasy land.  However, I do reserve my spot near the front of the line of people clamoring for you to get in touch with them when you get the chance. Fair enough?

Did your mom tell you Venus and I checked to see if you were alive at PEELathon?  She better have passed the message!

Starship Captain
« #364 : 06-17-2006 19:45 »
« : 06-17-2006 19:45 »

Who are you again? I don't remember ever seeing you here before.   :p

Wellcome back Layla.

Btw... Quesqu'il y a de mal à parlé Français??? (Man, it's hard for me to type in French now... I'm spending too much time with you guys.)

Space Pope
« #365 : 06-17-2006 21:22 »

Originally posted by Layla50:
Oh, and Misery Loves Company is up. I haven't gone to see it yet, but apparently it wasn't a bad story... and I wrote it too, apparently. Leela was in it. She's in most of my stories actually. Ooh, and it's actually finished an everything, that's pretty cool, eh? Oh, the glorious tresure that is English!

And if you've completely forgotten who the crazy person babbling at you is, she's harmless, so put down the silly string. Thanks beaucoup.

Yay the french let Layla go! I read Misery Loves Company, very very sweet story. I'm so glad to have you back!  :)

Urban Legend
« #366 : 06-17-2006 22:15 »
« : 06-17-2006 22:15 »

Glad to see you got home safe, Layla.  In case you were wondering, I have too.

Now get back to work.  S'il vous plait.

« #367 : 06-17-2006 22:17 »

Welcome back!  It's great to see you again!

I don't know much French at all, but I do know it's tres bon that you're back, mon ami!


Urban Legend
« #368 : 06-17-2006 23:41 »


Yay! Layla's back! My world is complete again! i was scared you didn't love us anymore!

Bending Unit
« #369 : 06-18-2006 02:53 »

Hourra! L'écrivain formidable est revenue!!  :love:

Bending Unit
« #370 : 06-19-2006 10:42 »

Thanks muchly for the welcomes everyone, and for cracking the whip N-o-r. My biggest problem is not that I'm franglaising in writing, but that I'm doing it orally... (prays no one takes that sentence out of context). My mother has learned a bit of french in the last year and likes it when I lapse back into it, so she doesn"t correct me, just takes a wild stab at what I'm saying... with amusing results, if you're me.

Oh, and bien sur, je ne veux pas dire qu'il y a un problem en écrivant français... j'adore la langue, mais l'anglais me manquait beaucoup!

At least that time was on purpose. (Oh, and Bergy and Venus, so sorry but my mom did not in fact pass along the message that you called. I had no idea til you mentioned it. My mom's response: oh, yeah, I forgot about that. Way cool that I got a call from PEELathon though!)

 :love:  :love:  :love: to all of you! ('Course I still love you Venus, you're the only friend I have who's named for a planet and a razor!) Much cuddles!

Starship Captain
« #371 : 06-19-2006 12:03 »
« : 06-19-2006 12:03 »

  :eek: What is this??? 2 post from Layla in 2 days... Wow, guys, she's really back!!!!

Hey Layla, I would really like to hear you speak Franglish.  :flirt:  (Cause I do it all the time... Well used to do it.)

Again welcome back!  :)
say what now

Bending Unit
« #372 : 06-22-2006 10:43 »


Bending Unit
« #373 : 06-22-2006 18:39 »

YIPPPPPEEEEEEEEEEEE!!!!!!!!!!! Say what now is still around!

Sadly, I'm not franglaising as much anymore Nic, after nearly a week home... well, half a week home anyway but I still have the occasional fear of speaking english. I can't yell in english anymore... it freaks me out.

As for me really being back, well in order for me to really be back I suppose I'll have to post something, like, say, the epilogue to "Famous Last Words" which I had to reread before I remembered it at all.

So... now I'm really back! (I'm posting the whole thing 'cause probably no one remembers it anymore but the epilogue is marked if you want to skip to the end. (Be gentle, it's been a long while since I've written or watched Futurama)

"Famous Last Words"

It was all going according to plan…

Phillip J. Fry, delivery boy less than extraordinaire, had reached a level of boredom that could have been fatal on some planets. (Namely Caffeinated V, where an omnipotent ten year old insisted that everyone be hyper all the time. If they weren’t… well, you know the rest.) Anyway, Fry was bored. He wanted to scream or dance or start a fire or write an off-Broadway play filled with bad spelling and dubious characterization.

Luckily for the world of theatre, Fry was also lazy. He really, desperately wanted something to happen, anything to relieve the mind numbing tedium. ‘Leela,’ he decided, ‘would probably be having the time of her life here.’ Perhaps he should have invited her.

In the time he’d spent pursuing Leela, Fry had, despite her claims to the contrary, learned a thing or two. Principal among these was that he needed the element of surprise on his side. The gorgeous captain was getting far too good at shooting down his plans before he could actually do anything about them. Fry felt he had discovered a useful weakness in the skintanium armour that was Turanga Leela: the unexpected.
She had no skill at all in being spontaneous. Fry figured that that must mean she would struggle with rejecting him if he came up with a brilliant idea off the top of his head, something she didn’t see coming. So far, that theory hadn’t really gotten him anywhere. The trouble was, he wasn’t particularly adept at coming up with brilliant ideas on impulse. In any case, spontaneity had never yet worked for any of the bad guys trying to kill them.

So with all that in mind, Fry impulsively switched tactics and devised an actual, carefully laid out, detailed plan with writing and thinking and everything. He unfolded the worn piece of paper in his hand.

Frys plane
1. Have idea.

Admittedly, it wasn’t a great plan in the beginning, but as per usual, TV had come through for him. A commercial had come along making it a much better plan. The highly exclusive “public” rocket skating rink was going to open its doors for people under the rank of “Mayor’s aid” for two nights only. Fry hadn’t thought much about it until Leela had spotted the ad. Immediately, she starting gushing about her childhood in the orphanareum again, but just before he dozed off, she mentioned how special it was when she’d gotten to rocket skate at that same arena. It had ended badly of course, Leela having all the luck of one of those dogs named ‘Lucky’, with her having been locked in a bathroom stall by a well-meaning janitor. Before that though, it had evidently been magical. After the sixth time she casually mentioned it, Fry, ever alert to Leela’s needs, picked up on the cue and suggested that they go together, but Leela vetoed it immediately, saying it would be impossible to get tickets.

Enter Philip J. Fry, master of the impossible.

The problem was that mastering the impossible sounded like a lot more fun than it actually was. “You know,” he began, heedless of the irritated grumbling of the… person-like thing in front of him in line, “This is the Future!” Fry always capitalized the word. “Shouldn’t there be some sort of futuristic magic trick to make waiting in line fun?” When no one responded, Fry tapped the growling being on what he assumed was its shoulder. “Hey! Listen, don’t you think you guys should have made-”

“No.” It responded in a voice so threatening that it would have made Darth Vader sound like a cartoon chipmunk.

“Really?” Fry bubbled, happy that someone was talking to him. Conversation was slightly more interesting that staring at the back of the weird thing’s head.

“NO.” Three lesser beings fainted. The compassionate New New Yorkers pushed their limp bodies out of line.

“Really?!” Fry repeated with an amazed shake of his head.

“Noooo.” It breathed. Somewhere, Morbo shivered.

“Huh. Well, I do.” Fortunately for Fry, the carnivorous being was on the Scarsdale diet. It turned away from him and Fry gave up.

Four hours later, he’d finally made it to the head of the line, hoping desperately because scalping was a more literal profession than it had been in his time, and hopping desperately because he really had to pee. “Please, tell me there’s tickets left!” he cried, lunging forward to prevent anyone from taking his turn.

“Yes, sir. ‘There’s tickets left.’” It quoted him obediently. “Would you like to purchase passes for rocket skating?”

“Yes! Yes! I would!” Fry asked for three, one for the first night opening and two for the second. He winced a little when the vendor quoted him the price, but it would be worth it for Leela. Fry carefully stored the tickets in his underwear. It was the only place Bender didn’t rifle through regularly, to the best of his knowledge.

Fry really, desperately wanted to look good rocket skating. It would all be pointless if Leela was completely delighted with the tickets only to be completely embarrassed when Fry did something stupid like breaking every bone in his body, or worse, breaking every bone in her body. Besides, that’s what always happened. Well, not breaking bones, unless Bender or Zapp Brannigan were involved somehow, but Fry did always seemed to botch it, often in new and creative ways, and Leela would get angry and say, “This is why I tell you no!”

Sometimes she apologized after, in that ‘let’s just be good friends’ kinda way. Fry really, desperately didn’t want to hear that message again.

So, he would practice. On the first night, he would strap dangerous, potentially explosive, high speed skates to his feet and see what happened.
"No pain, no gain"

An hour before the first skate was scheduled to begin, Fry paced outside the door to the rental shop, unwilling to waste a single minute of precious ice time trying to figure out how one went about getting into rocket skates. Roughly every thirty seconds or so, his tension increased until he was nearly vibrating. When a voice spoke from behind him, he metaphorically snapped.

“Oh, oh my. Someone’s certainly looking forward to a peaceful rocket skate.” Fry spun and fixed wild eyes on the tiniest, most fragile looking human being he had ever seen. He was wearing some sort of uniform and smiling warmly at Fry in a manner that suggested he had all the time in the universe. Fry was all too aware he did not.

“Are you-” Fry winced when his voice jumped an octave. He swallowed and tried again. “Um, hi. I was just wonderingifyouweretheguywhore ntsskates?” The words ran together as a direct result of the adrenaline surging through his body like a hyperactive seven year old on a pixie stick bender.

The elderly man tipped his head quizzically and looked thoughtful for a long moment before saying with great gravity, “Pardon?”

“Aieee!” Fry screamed, hands tripping over each other to jam themselves in his mouth to muffle the sound. Sanity was good. After a minute, Fry managed to settle himself enough to ask, “Skates?”

The increasingly maddening old guy watched him placidly, wearing a vaguely puzzled expression. “Pardon?” he asked again, if anything slower and more gravid than before.

Fry ground his teeth in frustration. Suddenly, a message from his brain informed him that his hands hurt. He thought about this, and then took them out of his mouth. “Skates?” he tried again in a last ditch effort.

“Skates?” Old Guy mumbled, before brightening, “Yes,” he crooned in a distinctly condescending tone. “You put skates on your feet to go skating. I’m in charge of renting them to skaters.” He smiled kindly up at Fry. “Would you like to see my pretty skates?”

Fry nodded childishly; if nods could lisp sweetly, this one would have. Victory!

“That’s great. Let me just get my key.” He held up an industrial sized key ring that Amy could have worn at a nightclub while Fry slumped to the bench, head in courageous hands.

Twenty minutes later, the would-be rocket skater was ten bucks poorer and busily fawning over the hard-won skates. “Let’s see, foot holes, warning label, sharp metal blades, warning label, filthy grey laces, warning label, liquid hydrogen ignition thingie, scary red button. Fry looked closely at the red button. It was very red. It looked like exactly the sort of button that might cause things to happen. Red sorts of things. He tipped the back of the skate towards his face and let his right hand meander towards the button in a casual, “I’m certainly not going to press this tempting red button” sort of way. The element of surprise was clearly the domain of the delivery boy, he decided and hit the button.

He was very surprised.

“YOU COMPLETE MORON!” yelled Mom’s recorded voice from the skate. “IF YOU ARE STUPID ENOUGH TO PRESS THE RED BUTTON” and the voice melted abruptly into the most grandmotherly voice imaginable, “then I’m afraid I must inform you that you are using these quality, hand knit rocket skates at your own risk. Take a bit of advice from a weary old grannie and kiss your fat donkey carcass goodbye.”

“Aw, she’s such a dear,” Fry sighed, “Kinda reminds me of my own grandmother-” His thoughts suddenly took him in an NC-17 direction and he hastily jammed his hand into his mouth and bit down hard, distracting himself nicely.

Other excited skaters had started to arrive by this point and Fry watched them carefully to see how they got the skates on. Closest to him, a wiry, white haired man with a distinctly upper-class accent was chatting to his fur-wearing companion.

“So I said, well, murder is a crime naturally, but we are talking about poor people here, and you can’t expect them to function in civilized society.”

“Wow,” Fry interjected, “you’re that judge guy who hangs out at all Bender’s court appearances. What are you doing here?”

The woman looked at him askance, but Judge Whitey soothed her, “It’s okay, Muffy, you have to expect these kinds of things to happen. That’s why were here after all, to slum with the common people.” He didn’t address Fry at all, but Fry didn’t notice or care.

“What a world we live in,” he murmured in delight, “Your friend wears fur stoles and titanium rings, my friend is titanium and sells stolen furs to crime rings. Yet, here we are together. Beautiful, really.” It was really just as well for Fry and Bender that the couple had decided to slum in higher circles.

Shrugging off the encounter, Fry turned back to the problem of getting the skates on. It seemed to him no different than putting twentieth century skates on, so he picked one up and started to slide his foot in.

“Aaaiieeee!” Fry stopped, surprised as a man threw himself over a bewildered person and grabbed Fry’s skate. “Dude, are you crazy?!” he demanded, aghast.

Hesitantly, Fry said, “no?”

“You haven’t got the safety on!” The big guy shifted on Fry’s lap, making him very uncomfortable before flicking a small switch. He got up and they both breathed a little easier, though for very different reasons. “Seriously man, you’ve got to be more careful. You coulda done some major damage.”

“Er, thanks,” Fry muttered, hoping Competent Sports Man would just go away.

“No problem, little man,” he replied to Fry’s chagrin. C.S.M. flashed a perfect smile at the girls tittering at the scene before continuing. “This your first time?”

“Uh,” Fry swallowed hard, “First time for what?”

“R.S., dude.” The redhead stared at him. “Rocket skating!”

“Oh, oh! I get it!” Fry laughed nervously. “Yeah, it is.” Fry really, desperately did not want to ask for the help he really, desperately needed. Fortunately, he didn’t have to.

C.S.M., with a flirty grin to the women watching him, was quick to volunteer. “The safety stays on while you’re not on the ice, that way you don’t burn holes in things, or people.” Seeing Fry’s glassy stare, he added, “That’s bad.”

“Right, right,” Fry nodded, “So now I put the skate on?”

“Sure thing!” C.S.M. talked him through basic safety procedures so Fry wouldn’t blow himself into “a pile of little dudes”, then demonstrated how to lace the skates. By the end of the lecture Fry was reluctantly grateful to Competent Sports Man, who’s actual name, it turned out, was Butch. The delivery boy much preferred the name C.S.M.

He let his guardian go to the tender mercies of every 20 something straight female in the rink and approached the ice. Taking a moment for a short Leela fantasy, Fry stepped onto the ice… and went down like a ton of bricks. Big heavy ones.

As he lay on the welcoming, cement-like ice, Fry heard an unwelcome voice bellow, “Dude! You gotta take the guards off first!” followed by admiring giggles.


It was perhaps the longest three hours of his life. Once he’d gotten the guards off, and became used to the weight of the rockets, it didn’t go too badly. He stopped slamming violently into the ice and even managed to skate backwards for a while. Fry’s optimism had nearly returned in full force when he heard it.

“Mommy? Why isn’t that man using his rockets?”

It was lucky for all concerned that C.S.M. had not been the one to point it out. With indescribable embarrassment, Fry suddenly understood why he was being passed by children and the elderly alike.

He didn’t want to take the safety off. He really desperately didn’t want to take the safety off, but Philip J. Fry also really desperately wanted Turanga Leela. He flicked the switch.

If Fry had been capable of coherent thought, that thought would have run somewhere along the lines of, 'What homicidal maniac decided to wreak his sublime vengeance on the world by attaching rockets to ice skates, which are already plenty dangerous, thank you very much!'

However, Fry lacked both the inclination and the capacity for such a thought. His actual thought, in the closest possible transcription, went

Fry had been leaning his weight ever so slightly forward when he activated the rockets, sending a message to the skates that he wanted to go faster than he wanted to go…ever. The compact rockets burst into action with an impressive roar. As a direct result, poor love-struck (and how!) Fry screamed the scream of the damned as he went into warp drive across the ice.

The only thing that saved his life from a nasty end at the hands of a concrete barrier was a nasty fall onto the ice. For what seemed to him like a long time, he lay there, feeling the overhead lights stab into his brain, trying to figure out who he was and why he was sprawled on something cold and hard.

A shadow blocked the light from his eyes, forming a glorious halo around someone’s beautiful head. A dreamy smile touched his lips as he recognized Leela. “I can’t believe you would do something like this,” came her astonished voice. ‘Funny, she sounds like she’s got a head cold.” His analytical mind wanted to study the problem further, but it was easily voted down by the part of his brain controlled by hormones. Just about all of his brain really.

“C’mon Leela,” he chided lightly while the world sparked and spun around them. “You know I’d do anything for you, except bathe everyday.”

“That can’t be good,” Leela muttered, though she sounded even stranger than before.

“Does anyone really bathe every single day?” Fry tried to defend himself, “Half the time we’re stranded in the middle of nowhere with strangers trying to kill us! You can’t really expect-”

Before he could really get into his rant about unrealistic expectations, Leela ran her hands over his head and across his chest, cheering him up considerably. “Whoa, Leela!” he couldn’t keep the lascivious grin from sauntering over his face, even though she had really hairy knuckles. “Not that I mind, baby, but isn’t this a little public for-?” Wait. Where was he?

“You are one funny little man, dude,” chuckled the now intimately familiar, intensely hated voice.

Heedless of his burgeoning collection of blunt force trauma, Fry bolted upright and rolled out from under the tender administrations of Competent Butch Man, er, Butch Competent Muscles, er Sporty Muscle Bag, er... Fighting back the urge to wretch, Fry pressed his face into the cool steadying surface beneath him until his chilled forehead ached.

“You okay, budster?” C.S.M. asked in infuriatingly genuine concern. Fry blindly waved an arm in what he hoped was a vaguely reassuring manner. It worked. “Glad to hear it. He’s okay, everybody!” Sparse claps and a few half-hearted cheers broke out, followed by a chorus of skates being fired up. Fry discovered where he had been storing that last little shred of dignity by listening to the anguished shriek as it died.


By the time, Fry dragged himself home to collapse on the floor of his shared apartment with Bender, he had revived enough of his battered psyche to feel vaguely self-satisfied. Though he had become more intimately acquainted with the ice, boards and Competent Sports Man than he had with some of his old girlfriends, it had been worth it. In the last ten minutes of the skate, Fry had learned just enough steering tricks to be able to do laps. It was the most glorious accomplishment of his life by a wide margin, and, sadly and pathetically, that did not strike him as sad or pathetic in the least. He didn’t really hurt that much, and tomorrow, he thought blissfully, as well-earned sleep claimed him, tomorrow he’d nonchalantly present Leela with the invitation of a lifetime.

"The Best Laid Plans O' Mice and Men Gang Aft Aglay…"

…and an ugly morning too it was for Fry. He had not felt all that badly before crashing the night before, but that was simply because muscles are hive animals, and one of them is always slow and pokey, holding everyone else up. That’s why they most often wait until the morning after to inform you that you are a colossal idiot.

Fry woke up to the miserable cacophony of nearly 700 muscles making clear to him why they felt he was an amazing, colossal idiot.

He tried to say ‘ow,” but he was not up to the task at all.

“Uhnnnnn,” he moaned plaintively, really, desperately hoping Bender would hear it and rescue him, until he realized what he was hoping for. “Nvrmnd,” he sighed to no one, having used up all his vowel strength in his first plea. Fry set about apologizing to each of his muscles until they decided to help him fall out of bed.

Eventually, by some unholy aid, (you know the bending unit I mean), Fry made it in to Planet Express where he found a convenient space of linoleum to be very, very still on until Leela strolled in, whistling merrily. The sight of him lying on the floor put a stop to that rather quickly, a fact that his ear muscles appreciated.

“Fry! What in the name of Douglas Adams happened to you?!”

Right. Talking. He remembered doing that. One of the face parts was involved somehow. As Fry tried to piece together the lost art of conversation, Leela started prodding him in much the same manner as C.S.M. had the evening previous. This time he was fairly certain it was Leela anyway.

Fry would have been thrilled beyond the dreams of base jumpers everywhere had not his rebelling muscles interfered. Being pawed by C.S.M. had actually been a more pleasurable experience. He wanted to cry, and would have if only it wouldn’t have meant his immediate death.

“No blood, no broken bones…” Leela looked into his eyes. “Hangover?” He could have denied it, but he would have had to come up with another lie to avoid ruining their magical evening of happy happiness. After organizing a resistance force to counter the rebellion, Fry tipped his head in assent and watched mutely as all sympathy faded from Leela’s face.

“On a Tuesday night?” she demanded, not quite as incredulous as Fry wanted her to be.

“I had a really good reason,” Fry began weakly.

“Which was?” Leela asked, never moving her eye from his face.

“Ummm?” he offered hopefully. The cyclops rolled her eye and stalked out of the room.

Just when he thought he knew what feeling miserable was like, he found out he was wrong. His right calf jabbed at him in scornful agreement. His spirits lifted almost a picometre when Leela returned a minute later with a wet cloth, a glass of water and a couple of Trylenols. Opiates for the muscle masses.

She lifted his head and gave him the pills, washing them down with the water. With almost unnatural strength, Leela pulled him to his feet and helped him over to the sofa. Once he was lying down, she brushed his tousled hair from his forehead and placed the damp cloth where it would be the most soothing. Fry tried to send her gratitude and love signals with his eyes, but her receiver was down.

“You are so lucky,” she chided. In that moment, despite everything, Fry had to agree. “Hermes is on his one day mandatory stress leave and the Professor is getting his hips upgraded. ‘The Captain,’” she muttered, switching oddly to the third person, “is feeling lenient today, so you’re gonna get off.” Fry completely misinterpreted that remark, so it was just as well the analgesics had gotten bogged down in the trenches of his stomach lining and blinding physical pain kept him mute.

Leela frowned down at him with such a serious expression that he felt a jolt run through him. “We all need a little stress reliever from time to time, Fry, but when it starts to affect work, it’s getting out of hand. Be careful.” With a friendly pat on the arm in parting, Leela left him alone to think.

She thought he had a drinking problem? Leela thought he had a drinking problem?! It wasn’t beyond the realm of possibility, Fry had to admit, but still! Utter dismay conquered any last thoughts he had of sticking it out until the date. It was over. He had blown it, big time. Instead of a once-in-a-lifetime dream date, Fry had gotten a humiliating lecture from one of the few people whose respect he actually wanted.

Really, desperately wanted, and no chance of that now he realized.

When Amy wandered in, mid-pity wallow, she hardly noticed him.

“Hey, Amy.” His voice sounded strange to his own ears, like some depressed stranger had borrowed his voice box. He felt the absurd urge to toss a nickel at himself.

“Hmm? Oh. Hey, Fry.” She was obviously in one of her low-key moods and that suited him just fine.

“K’mere for a sec.” Amy glanced at him vacantly, then wandered over.


Shifting wearily, Fry fought back an unmanly whimper as he dug the hard won passes out of his pocket. “Some guy dropped off a couple of rocket skate tickets. Why don’t you show ‘em to Leela?”

The intern smiled brightly. “Oh, hey! I love rocket skating! Two tickets?! Maybe Armando-”
Fry tried to sit up in his alarm, regretting it fiercely a moment later, but Amy didn’t register it. “No! Uh, I mean, you know, maybe you need a girl’s night out or something.”

“With Leela?” Amy asked, faintly skeptical. He shot her a pleading look and she relented. “Alright. Well, whatever. I’ll go ask her.” Without another word, she grabbed the tickets and left the room.

“See ya, Amy.” At last Fry let himself sink into the embrace of the coffee (among other things)-stained couch. He started to drift off, despite the nagging worry that things would be even worse when he woke up again. Fry really, desperately tried to be happy that Leela, at least, would have a great evening, but he really, desperately failed.

"Opening Eye"
“I’m just saying, it’s not like him!” Leela shouted over the noise of the happy, animated crowd.

“Yes, and you keep saying it,” Amy replied, rolling her eyes cutely in her own well-practiced technique. Leela frowned at her, unsatisfied.

“Well, I’m worr- mildly concerned about him, that’s all.”

“He’ll be fine, Leela,” she insisted, “he always is. You can’t honestly think Fry’s a drunk!”

Amy gasped as she narrowly avoided tripping over the perfectly level surface of the ice. When she steadied herself, the cyclops still looked miserable. Surprise, surprise. “I wouldn’t say so normally, but he was a complete mess this morning. Fry looked like he’d been playing Twister: F5 Edition with Zoidberg again, only without the smell, thank goodness. Besides, he’s so helpless against Bender’s influence." Leela looked completely anxious, and it was killing Amy's good time. "I just don’t know what’s going on with him, and I don’t like not knowing…” Leela trailed off, staring into space. Even without looking, the cyclops easily dodged a mitten that had gone astray. Melodic Asian curses whispered in Amy’s jealous ear.

“Leela, even Fry understands the difference between a robot and a human. He did really well in the “Things You Must Never Do for Bender” course that Hermes set up,” she offered helpfully.

Leela’s moody expression continued to stand in the way of Amy’s fun, so she switched tactics. “Look Leela, every man has his off days. Every once in a while, even Armando X. Cruz gets all melty, and not in the good way.” She felt she’d made some progress when Leela’s lips tensed just enough to add ‘confused’ to the thesaurus rich levels of unhappiness they were already expressing.

“There’s a good way to be ‘melty’?”

Amy lips did a few contortions of their own, investigating the many flavours of the word, ‘lecherous’. “Oh, yes,” she sighed. “That’s why I only date him on every second Tuesday in months with the letter ‘A’ in them.” Leela did not press her for details.

“Maybe you’re right,” the cyclops announced in the manner of someone trying to convince someone else of her sincerity while feeling entirely insincere. “I’m sure Fry’ll be fine. He’ll be up and around by now anyway, and after all, why should I throw away my entire evening just to chide him for being so miserable?”

Amy nodded. “That’s the spirit!” she replied supportively, all the while really desperately wishing she hadn’t accidentally dropped her little black book in a duck pond that afternoon. It was either invite Leela as Fry had suggested or pick up some random hot stranger, and she just wasn’t in the mood to put in that kind of effort today.

“Except, except that that’s just the sort of thing I would do,” Leela finished doubtfully. Amy blew out through pursed lips in irritation and Leela shot her an apologetic glance.

The older woman fired up the rockets and launched herself into a delicate spin that Amy couldn’t have done if her social life depended on it. Leela came out of the spin and returned to her easily. “It is wonderful to be here, with the cool breeze and the raw, scorching Freudian power under my feet.” With a sincerity that startled Amy, Leela added, “Thanks for inviting me, and tell your parents I said thanks, too.”

She frowned at the cyclops, “Why?”

Leela shrugged, “Well, I know they’re incredibly rich and all, so it wasn’t hard for them to get the tickets, but it’s still a nice gesture. You’ve got great parents.” Amy wasn’t particularly self-aware, but she knew she didn’t want to hear about how great her parents were. Leela’s eye took on that watery quality that usually warned of an impending bout of orphanarium-inspired self-pity.

“The tickets aren’t from my parents,” she said quickly, hoping to turn the tide. “I don’t know where they’re from actually.” At Leela’s surprised brow-wrinkling she added, “Fry said some guy dropped them off. He’s the one who suggested I invite you.” Amy hoped that would be some consolation for the cyclops. But she didn’t seem consoled, she seemed shocked.

Leela gasped dramatically. “So that explains it then!” Then she immediately calmed, adding nonchalantly, “I mean, what are the odds of you inviting me out on your own whim.”

Amy was hurt, but not surprised. She patted Leela’s arm in a sisterly manner. “Don’t feel that way, Leela. It’s not like your so freakish looking that I wouldn’t be seen in public with you.” She glanced around to make sure none of her cotillion friends were around before smiling kindly at the purple-haired woman.

“All you need is a little make up, and a better hair cut, and maybe lose a few pounds er,” Some of the hostility newly radiating in the air caught Amy’s attention but she couldn’t stop herself from adding, “and you really should do something about that unibrow…” Finally, Leela’s furious stare bored a hole into her armour of apathy and Amy managed to trail off in a verbal equivalent of her cursed clumsiness. Judging from Leela's expression, this conversation was not going to turn the tide and make it a fun evening. Nearly frantically, Amy tried to find something positive to say. After a few seconds, she blurted, “And you’re such a good skater! Makes you look much younger,” she added brightly. To Amy’s intense relief, Leela winked in surprise and a reluctant smile crossed her face.

“I guess, I guess I am a good skater,” she murmured, almost shyly, as if it was some sort of revelation. Amy knew Leela was very intelligent, and intense in every sense of the word. She was the only person Amy had met who could take down a Vampiric Richard Simmons clone without unattractively retching, yet Leela could completely fall to pieces over a more or less sincere compliment. She watched in strange fascination as Leela’s face began glow with defiant pride. “Yeah!” she yelled, startling more than a few skaters, “I am a good skater! You hear that, jerkwads?!”

Amy was quick to downplay the grinning lunatic beside her. “Ignore her. She’s off her meds. I’ve never seen this woman before in my life,” Amy hissed out a litany of blithe reassurances.

Leela either didn’t notice or didn’t care about their staring, launching herself into the air with a jubilant leap. Amy couldn’t help but feel a bit of envious adoration. “Physicality is definitely your friend,” she grudgingly muttered as Leela circled back.

“I’ve always had a bit of a knack for sports,” the cyclops announced cheerfully, forgetting her anxieties, at least for the time, “provided they aren’t heavily dependant on depth perception or teamwork. C’mon! Let’s skate!” Without waiting for Amy’s consent, Leela snatched hold of her arm and began dragging her forward.

“Okay, okay! Spleesh! Leela, let go!” Amy squeaked in terror before she managed to find her precarious balance. They skated together for a while in silence, Leela in a state of near rapturous joy, Amy breathing heavily as her heart fell back into its normal rhythm.

A guy swooped in front of them before turning to skate beside Leela. “That was suh-weet, skater babe! Where’d you learn to slag a hanky like that?” While Amy tried to recover from the slight of having Totally Hot Fantastic Stud completely ignore her to talk to Leela, the cyclops had launched into her life story.

“-so I attached the laser cutters to the sewer boots, and wallah! Cheap and highly destructive skates!”

“Wikipedic!” Totally Hot Fantastic Stud, Amy noted with distaste, was practically drooling. Typical of Leela to blow it, though, with all that talking.

“-and so he told me I would have spend the entire summer re-paving the courtyard. That’s how I picked up my first applied trade, too.”

Amy decided to intervene in the borefest. “Leela, why don’t you introduce me to your charm-” That did it. She had taken her delicately slanted eyes off the ice, and the long threatening, terribly patient, sword of Damocles dropped. Amy dropped too, just flopped down on the surface as though gravity had suddenly remembered that she had stolen it's boyfriend.

Fortunately, she’d been slightly ahead of Leela and so missed badly scorching her arm in the rocket’s flame. Unfortunately, she’d been slightly ahead of Leela and so did not miss tripping the cyclops, causing her to slam face-first into the rock-hard ice. THFS naturally escaped unscathed.

“Gnarly! Are you still biting?!” He bellowed, calling out to Amy as he turned Leela over.

“I’m fine, I’m fine!” she waved him towards Leela. Fear seized her heart and she felt colder even than the icy landing would justify. Even someone with the medical expertise of Zoidberg could see that it had been a bad fall. She burrowed her head in her hands. Leela had not even had time to scream.

“Is she okay?!” Amy shrieked, when no answers were forthcoming. Voices clamoured around them, but she could not pick out Leela’s from among them. “Leela? Leela?!”

“Easy, easy. Can you stand?” Amy uncovered her face and allowed a woman to haul her to her feet. She couldn’t even see Leela’s head for all the worried people peering at her. Suddenly, someone gasped, “She is messed up! Look at her eye!” She’d fought back a wave of panic before she understood the message behind the horror.
“She’s only got one eye!” A rush of sympathetic mortification washed over her as the anonymous chatter began flying.

“What on earth is it?”

“No, keep the children back!”

“Some sort of monster-”


“-weird thing-”

“-one eye.”

“-one eye?”

“-one eye!”

Amy instantly repented of every unkind word she’d ever sent in Leela’s direction. “Get the hell away from her if you’re not going to help!” she snarled, shoving bigots out of the way. Some of the crowd began to take their thoughtless gossip elsewhere; others turned their attention to the attractive, enraged Asian who had lapsed into Cantonese curses.

“What, are you a friend of that-”

“Her name is Leela, you a-”

“Ow.” Amy spun in a circle and eight hands reached out to keep her from falling again at the breathy, patently anti-climactic sound. Leela didn't even sound human.

“Leela?!” Amy shrilled, elbowing an idiot out of the way so she could finally see what had happened. Blood, was her first thought and it sent her into a spiral of recrimination.

“Whoah, dudette,” THFS murmured to her, “You better sit down before you fall down. I got this covered.” He gestured toward the benches. Amy continued to stare at the streaks of blood covering Leela’s face. Her eye was half-lidded and already beginning to swell. ‘She’s gonna be purple and lumpy for days,’ Amy thought, distressed.

“’my,” Leela slurred her name, “Amy, I’m fine. I just need to sit down.” The intern noted that there was no way Leela could get more sat down, but she didn't say anything. THFS was supporting the sprawled woman with one arm as he dug through a first aid kit.

It was only then that Amy realized that he worked at the rink. A few feet away, two more rink guards were watching anxiously, one holding a bulky two-way radio and the other trying to clear the scene. Totally Hot Fantastic Stud was proving to be very good in a crisis, and Amy filed away that thought for further consideration later.

More employees of the rink rushed onto the ice, sliding with practiced ease even with the heavy medical equipment they were carrying. “I’m alrigh-” Leela slurred, clutching her head in obvious pain. She began trying to get up, but was quickly forced back to her sitting position.

Amy moved forward to help, but was lost as to what exactly she should do. She noticed that someone was awkwardly trying to unlace her deactivated skates and instantly took over the task, glad for some way to help. Amy’s fumbling had little to do with her klutziness and everything to do with the adrenalin pumping through her blood.

Leela’s skin had taken on a distinctively grey tone and she wasn’t talking nearly enough for Amy’s liking. The observant woman had not missed the concerned glances flying back and forth where Leela couldn’t see.

After what seemed like an hour, she managed to work the large skates off Leela’s feet. They looked terribly cold on the ice, even with the hideous thick plaid socks she was wearing.

“Boots,” Amy told them, “I’ll get the boots!” before sliding wildly though the crowds to where they’d left their gear. After a quick debate, Amy kicked off her own skates and slid into her shoes, grateful that she’d worn rather grippy flats that evening. The ice was rough from the skates and surprisingly easy to walk on. She grabbed the boots and cut straight through the crowd, heedless of the wild maneuvers she was causing.

When Amy returned, she was startled to find Leela being escorted off the ice, walking mostly under her own power. “I have your boots,” she said quickly, rushing beside them. For a second, Leela peered at Amy through the narrow slit her eye had become, as if she’d didn’t quite understand. Then she smiled with an incomprehensible affection for the clunky footwear and tried to take them.

“Just wait, wait now, ‘til we’re off the ice.” One of the medical equipment guys said firmly.

Amy nodded quickly, and clutched the boots to her chest. With the blood wiped off her face, Amy could see the scratches that had caused them. Leela had evidently slid a foot or two when she’d fallen. The eye would be black for sure, but it was globviously still working. It was the head injury now, that was scaring Amy, but Leela’s colour had improved and the skate guards no longer looked so worried.

“Ma’am?” Totally Hot Charming Bedside Manner Stud called to Leela. “Ma’am, I need you to give these awesome rockers behind me permission to give you a shot of the Anti-Concussion stuff. It’ll make your brain feel totally hearty, and I promise it won’t hurt nearly as much as the brash crash did.”

Leela nodded her permission silently, but the man patiently kept asking her to repeat what he was saying until they were satisfied she understood. The cyclops improved rapidly after the injection, wondering about her skates and expressing her dismay at the spectacular way she’d humiliated herself. Politely, most of the employees excused themselves to file a coniferous forest worth of incident reports. Amy would have protested Leela’s claims of embarrassment, but Bedside Manner Stud beat her to it.

“Oh, man, you have totally no idea about humiliation, babe!” He grew suddenly less boisterous, “R.S. is a radical, but dangerous sport: accidents are bound to happen.” He laughed suddenly, “and you really are a punktacular skater compared to most. Just yesterday we had this one red-headed spudman, and he was hopeless.” BMS nodded and grinned crookedly at them. “I mean, really, “Little Dude was cruising all over the place, crashing and falling, didn’t know the first thing about R.S. Wouldn’t give up though, said he had to make a miracle for his chickita.” Amy glanced nervously at Leela, who looked like she’d been slapped in the face by Gamera, both literally and metaphorically.

“Did you catch his name?” Leela whispered.

BMS man shrugged, “Even if I did, I’m too much of a gentledude to tell you, sorry. Nice little biter, though. I figured he’d be here tonight actually, but I haven’t seen him. Bet he woke up with one ripping hydrogen ignited R.S. hangover though.” Leela choked quietly as Beside Manner Stud laughed again. “Poor guy, we didn’t even have to clean the ice, ‘cause he did it for us.” Amy smiled back at him, or rather, she bared her teeth in a hideous parody of a smile, really desperately wanting him to stop shoving the truth in their faces like a British nanny of steroids.

“So, um, is it all right if I just get her home then? Or should we maybe go to a hospital?”

“She’s seems to be alright now, so you can take her home, but it that headache gets worse, or if she nauseous or disoriented later then she oughta get that checked.”

“She,” came a nearly audible growl from the multihued cyclops, “would like to keep skating, if it’s all the same to them.

“Shmeesh, Leela, you’ve got to be crazy.” Amy began, but Leela cut her off in a manner so quietly threatening that it briefly took the cute out of Amy’s ‘do. Even Totally Hot Charming Bedside Manner Stud seemed to lose some of his masculine charm. He quickly spotted another dude in distress and excused himself for his next heroic mission.

“I’m skating, Amy, and I’m going to love it more than Bender loves stealing.” There was nothing weak or disoriented about that declaration, so Amy wordlessly pulled out her skates.

True to her word, Leela skated until last minute of the skate, fearlessly speeding around the area, exploring and experimenting with the power of the skates. The intensity of it frightened Amy, and she didn’t really understand why going home after a head injury was so completely unacceptable. She tried really desperately not to look worried as she watched the beauteous ferocity of Turanga Leela finding magic, surrounded by the unkind whispers of the world.

The faint hiss of a door sliding open stirred Fry from his light doze. Contrary to his usual habits, he had shown up quite early for work, despite being immersed in his body’s ongoing civil war. He had slept hardly a wink last night and that was only partly due to the fact that Bender had declared it Mexican Fiesta Night, purely to spite his Cuban neighbours. Naturally, war broke out and the robots had settled it in what Bender claimed was a time-honoured tradition: a yodeling contest. After Bender had been arrested for violating his court ordered singing abstinence, Fry was left alone with his thoughts. Ten minutes after that unbearable silence, he’d dragged himself out of bed and trudged wearily to work.

Fry really, desperately wanted to know if Leela’s evening had been as awesome as he had intended, but he wasn’t exactly sure what he was hoping for. In theory he wanted her to come in, radiating joy, but ... it had been without him. He tried to push the selfish thought away. Something good oughta come out of all this misery, and his great plan was ruined either way. “Oh, please, let her be happy,” he sighed wishing Bender was there to pull him out of this funk.
A whisper of lime-green fabric and the heavy soft thuds of a major pair of boots alerted him to Leela’s approach. He tried to smile, but regret and nausea turned it into a sickly grimace. It really was a good thing he was far too manly to cry. She came nearer and he snapped his eyes shut, pretending to sleep so he wouldn’t have to pretend to smile. Thud, thud, thud, thump. He didn’t have to see Leela to know she was watching him.

She looked down at Fry with unguarded fondness, a warm smile lighting her face despite the way it caused her skin to tighten painfully. Bruises striking enough last night were positively vivid that morning. The angry red scratches and dark blue colouring had sent Nibbler into an alarmed frenzy and belied Amy’s best efforts to cover them with makeup. Leela had greeted the intern’s unexpected arrival that morning with bemused acceptance. Amy had squeaked in dismay upon first seeing Leela, but then said nothing more about her appearance. Instead she’d practically ambushed her with foundation, powder, blush and substances Leela couldn’t guess at, let alone afford, for nearly an hour before Leela had finally, gently pushed her away.

“It’s fine Amy, there’s nothing else you can do. Some things just take time.” Leela didn’t understand Amy’s actions at all, no more than she understood Fry’s anonymously giving her the tickets, but she accepted it with gratitude nonetheless, trying to reassure Amy that everything would be fine, that one didn’t study Kung Fu without earning a few bruises, and that as long as Zoidberg was nearby, a purple faced, purple haired woman wouldn’t stand out from the crowd.

Amy hadn’t looked convinced, had in fact worn the same uneasy look she’d sported throughout the rocket skate, but Leela didn’t worry too much about that. Tomorrow she would remember the way she’d humiliated herself, the way people had stared and whispered, the way they always stared and whispered.

Today was for Fry.

So now she stood, watching him as he pretended not to notice her, something she’d done to him many times in the past.

What to say to him?

Another awkward few seconds and she smiled again, this time mischievously, coming at last to a decision. A couple quick strides and she flopped down on the couch where he was sprawled, half landing on his feet and causing his eyes to fly open.

“Leela! Oh, I didn’t see-”

And that was how long it took for his eyes to communicate with his brain, and then his brain to his mouth.

“Wha-?! What happened to your face?!”

Not a bad reaction time, considering it’s Fry.

Leela beamed at him before pretending to look exasperated. “Fry, nothing happened to my face. I only have one eye. Count ‘em, one.”

He stared at her, slack-jawed as he tried to process this bit of information. Finally, cautiously, he asked, “And... you we’re always ... that bluey-blacky colour.” Leela shook her head in amusement. “‘Cause I think I would have remembered that. I think.”

She laughed quietly and casually pushed his feet off the couch so she could slide next to him. Fry winced subtly and Leela cringed. “Sore?”

His eyes darted around anxiously as he tried to come up with an explanation. “Uh-?”

“Hung over again?”

He didn’t hear the apology in the question and stiffened immediately. “Aw, no, c’mon Leela, it’s not-”

She touched his shoulder quickly. “I know, I know. I’m teasing.” He looked away from her unhappily. “Listen, Fry, I’m really sorry. I was out of line yesterday.”

“Oh, well, uh I wasn’t drinking- I was, um-” He was still taking in her discoloured face.

Leela cut him off quickly before he could continue. Though she couldn’t say why, she didn’t want Fry to know that she knew. “You were working out.”

Fry blinked as his brain hiccupped. “What?”

She smiled sweetly at him. “I know you wanted to keep it a secret.”


“But you know, the results really show.”


“You’re definitely getting muscles, Fry.” She squeezed arm playfully as he tried frantically to understand what was happening. “I think it’s great that you’re trying to take better care of yourself.”

“Right...” the redhead said slowly. “Good.”

Leela nodded eagerly before leaning in closer. Fry looked distinctly nervous. “But I want you to know, Fry, that I think muscles are highly overrated. It's the heart, the heart that matters. Understand?”

“Yes?” It was pure question.

“Yes.” She patted him once again on the shoulder before leaning back with a sigh.

It took a few minutes for Fry to recover enough to ask again about her face.

“Oh that,” she shrugged it off. “I tripped last night.”

“While skating... I mean, you did go rocket skating last night, right? Um, with Amy?”
He looked so nonchalantly anxious. “Oh, yes. We did go skating. It was absolutely wonderful. Best time I’ve had in, oh, forever.”

Fry perked up a bit, a smile creeping onto his face like Zoidberg on Professional Competence Day. “So you really liked it, huh?”

Leela looked him right in the eyes and beamed at him. “It was an amazing evening. It was... it was magical.”

Fry nodded slowly, his eyes sparkling with dawning satisfaction. “Sounds like you had a perfect evening then.”

“Pretty much.” They sat together in companionable silence for a few minutes before Leela reluctantly stood. “It’s 9:15. Duty calls.”

“A captain’s work is never done.”

“Not with this crew.” But she smiled to ease the criticism.

Fry gave her a teasing little wave. “Go on then, Captain. I’ve got important delivery boy things to do here.”

Leela rolled her eyes then headed towards the lockeroom. Just as she reached the door she paused, turning back to him. It would never happen, but still- “Oh, Fry. Next time I go rocket skating, why don’t you come too? It’ll be fun.”

He sat up immediately. “Me? Really?”

“You. Really.”

“You really want me to come skating with you? Really?”

She chuckled but not without a bit of wistfulness. “Really.”


“Yes, desperately!” Leela laughed out loud.

Fry couldn’t quite believe it. “Desperately?” he repeated skeptically.

“Yes. Really, desperately. Now go back to sleep.”

Fry obediently snuggled back down into the battered couch and Leela left him, but not before she heard him mutter, “Heh, heh. It all went according to plan.”



Bending Unit
« #374 : 06-22-2006 19:50 »

I really, desperately love this!!  :love:

The epilogue is perfect... Yay, shippy! And funny!  :love:

It took me a while after I first read this ages ago to realise that it's based on Leela's line in TWoF about how Fry once stood in line six hours to get her rocket skating tickets...right? 'Cause I was confused at first; I was wondering why it said that Leela hadn't been rocket skating since she was little.

Anyway, Layla, this was a glorious return to the world of fanfiction! Please don't leave us again! Long may you continue to bless us with your wonderful writing!  :D

Bending Unit
« #375 : 06-22-2006 21:13 »

Ah, thanks muchly! It's been so long, I'm a little insecure. Having finished this one, it's back to working on Fry's Choice again.


You are, of course, completely right about this story being based on that one little line from The Why of Fry. I love plot bunnies. So cute and fluffy!

Thanks again dear, I really appreciate the support!

Starship Captain
« #376 : 06-22-2006 22:45 »
« : 06-22-2006 22:45 »

 :eek: WALL OF TEXT!!!!
Oh! Its the rocket skating fic...
... I'll read (and Re-read) that tomorow morning Layla. Got to get some sleep... But I want to read it now... ARGH!!!    :mad:   :sleep:   :sleep:

Urban Legend
« #377 : 06-22-2006 23:09 »

I'm too busy to fully comment, but I think I should take the time to invent a new word for that epilogue:


The great thing about English, especially in America, is that no one cares what you do to it.

And I'd like to make one general comment about style; while I fully enjoy script, you definitely use prose to your best advantage in the epilogue here.  We get insight into character's thoughts, without which the scene wouldn't make much sense, and we get a nice joke that would probably have gone on too long in dialogue.  Libertad!  Libertad!


Urban Legend
« #378 : 06-23-2006 01:01 »

*spontaniously bursts wuth joy* This was awesomely timed, cause till just now i had been having a horrible day.
Ralph Snart

Agent Provocateur
Near Death Star Inhabitant
DOOP Secretary
« #379 : 06-23-2006 01:46 »

Oh Venus, how could you be having a horrible day with all the good news coming out about our favorite show?

Layla's little update was like whipped cream and a cherry on top of an ice cream sundae:  Not necessary, but very welcomed and delicious.

Bending Unit
« #380 : 06-23-2006 04:39 »

Originally posted by Ralph Snart:
Layla's little update was...Not necessary

What? What?

What do you mean, 'not necessary'? Since when was Layla's writing not necessary to survival?

Don't ever let me hear you say that again!  :D

Urban Legend
« #381 : 06-23-2006 05:15 »

Well, like I said before, the epilogue wasn't a necessary addition, because I like ship of the subtle variety, but you definitely didn't go over the top at the end there, which is a huge plus.  And honestly, you disappeared for so long, I'm glad to see basically anything you've got. (speaking of, seems like you've got some new Fry's Choice stuff.  Send it over!)  Your writing is well crafted and deftly flowing as always.

Stick around this time Layla, wontcha?

Starship Captain
« #382 : 06-23-2006 08:22 »

Nice work Layla! The ending is just right. (Click save as)

Again nice work Layla.

Urban Legend
« #383 : 06-23-2006 08:51 »

awesome.  Awesome to the max.  This was my first time reading 'Famous Last Words' and  I think it might be my favorite of your stories so far; though really they're all good.  You got the characters down to a 't', there was plenty of humor to balance the shippy, and the plot itself was classic futurama. 

I loved competent sports man.  He reminded me of this guy I used to know in High School.  Also for some reason the usage of the word 'wikipedic' made me laugh hard enough that my dogs started barking at me...  I might just have to add that one to my vocabulary  :) 

The epilogue was a nice touch.  Poor Fry, stuck in the middle of a robot yodeling contest  :)

« #384 : 06-23-2006 16:33 »

I had almost forgotten this story.  Very nice ending.  I did catch one slight error, though:

Leela rolled her eyes then headed towards the lockeroom. Just as she reached the door she paused, turning back to him. It would never happen, but still- “Oh, Fry. Next time I go rocket skating, why don’t you come too? It’ll be fun.”

Eyes?????   :)


Bending Unit
« #385 : 06-23-2006 17:59 »

Crash_7:Nyarg. Lousy cyclops. If she were a triclops there'd be no problem. Seriously, thanks.  :)

soylentOrange:Thanks muchly. I'm kind of fond of it myself. I find "shipedy" difficult to write but it's more fun than drama... of course, the only drama story I've written is a lengthy, wordy monstrosity, so perhaps I'm biased. Competant Sports Man is pretty much the definition of my sense of humour... sort like word play personified. It's a lot of fun if you're me.

I no longer remember inventing wikipedic, but I'm glad you found it funny. I predict that it will one day replace the word, liberdat in common usuage.

Regarding the robot yodeling contest, somethings are funnier when you don't describe them in detail... just let the imagination go free.

Nic: Merci beaucoup, ami!

Bergey, Oh, I'm sorry. I read through your thread and every once in a while you or someone else would wonder where I was and it was sad. I feel all guilty now. It was just so crazy and stressful. I have no idea how I ever made it to my grad, and them all of a sudden it was over and then poof, I was parlay vuing. I missed you buddy, I really did. (Expect a wordy review from me in the near future...as well as an email!)
I'm trying to keep the mad slobbering shipper in me chained... though it does get away from me sometimes.

I do intend to stick around... that's the best I can do.

Thanks muchly Arkan and Ralph... though Ralph made me hungry.

Venus, lovey, I'm sorry you were having a bad day, I hope it's better now! That was one of your stories, you remember... er, at least I think it was.

N-o-r: I continue to enjoy your endless talent for butchering the english language when it suits your purpose. You just don't have the same kind of freedom en francais. They have this weird council that governs french... it's a little odd... but there are hilarious side effects, such as vaseliner is the verb to coat with vaseline (really!) and there's also the word "googler" meaning, to search with google.
Ah, les francais... il faut les aimer.

 Thanks, sweetie, as usual.

As for having parts of Fry's Choice ready for betaing... heh, well, not quite, but it's getting there. Remember John, the minute I get anything ready is  the same minute I send it to you. Honestly. I have absolutely no ability to hold on to finished writing, which is why it's slowly killing me that I had the last chapter pretty much written since before my abduction by the french.
PCC Fred

Space Pope
« #386 : 06-23-2006 18:05 »

Ni fedrais siarad Ffrangeg...  :cry:

Great ending, Layla!  I agree with JBERGES, it's shippy, but without going overboard.  I like the balance between characterisation and humour, particularly Amy trying to be nice to Leela, but in that Amy-esque way where she manages to throw in a few chips about Leela's appearance.

Glad you're back, can't wait for the next part of Fry's Choice!  :)

Wow, Futurama is recommissioned, Layla updates, and the French soccer team finally finds le but, all in one day!  Who says 23 ain't a magic number?

Space Pope
« #387 : 06-23-2006 18:06 »

I liked the Fry's too manly to cry joke. How sweet.  :love: So wait I was wondering was this like that refrence that Leela made in the Why of Fry about how he stood in line to get her tickets? Or was this another time?

Urban Legend
« #388 : 06-24-2006 01:48 »

Originally posted by PCC Fred:
Ni fedrais siarad Ffrangeg...   :cry:

Bending Unit
« #389 : 06-25-2006 20:41 »
« : 06-25-2006 20:41 »

Believe it or not, I'm finally updating Fry's Choice... now! You should all lavish affection on Bergey for betaing this so quickly and so well.

    :love: Wuv ya, Bergey!

Of course, it's shorter than it would have been if he had not given me some advice (which I entirely agree with, by the way) so you may also want to scare him a little with vile threats. Go on, you know you want to. He doesn't mind at all.    :)

On the other hand, the next part will be longer and better because of that same advice. Well, it's all up to you to decide. Hope you like this part (slightly reordered from the original to minimize shortness... or maximize longness):

P.S. You really only missed out on a paragraph and it was melodramatic anyway.

Part 54:

   Before the uneasy silence had a chance to settle over them, Fry asked Munda what she knew about Leela’s captaining. He then immediately launched into the retelling of a recent incident, complete with sound effects and wild, not entirely appropriate, gestures.

   “And so Bender said, “Sacrificial virgins? Are you guys probing up the wrong cavity!” So then Leela hit him, and then she hit… them…” Chastity and Munda watched in bewilderment as the redhead’s words ground to a painful halt, Fry realizing he’d just insulted Leela’s honour in front of her mother. “Er, I mean, wh…” The cyclops held him in an iron stare for a beat, then laughed lightly, if somewhat uncomfortably. He winced, then laughed nervously as Munda gave him a playful jab in the side.

Despite the miserable circumstances, Fry had managed to lift her spirits a bit, a near miraculous feat. ‘He’s got a rare gift in that heart of his,’ she decided. ‘Maybe he’s not such a bad match for Leela…’ Not that Munda wanted to interfere in her daughter’s life. Never. ‘Still, she does need to smile more often…’

   She was interrupted in her musings by a strident young voice. “Doc!” Chastity blinked and turned towards the sound. “Doc?” he called again, “Doc Rumelle, you got

   “I’m over here,” Chastity responded. She started to leave them, but pulled back to support Fry before he could fall. “You need to get yourself back to bed.”

   Seconds later, a head popped through the part in the curtains. It belonged to a young mutant nurse whose body caught up to his head shortly thereafter.

   “Oh, hey, Doc.  You got a call on Sewercom! It’s Nixon! Er, President Nixon!” Cassidy turned, surprised, in the direction of the wide-eyed nurse. Tension, just beginning to fade, returned in an electric surge that left the air crackling.

   “Go on now, I’ve got him,” Munda said firmly, hooking a tentacle around Fry’s shoulder.

   Chastity gave her a skeptical look. “Who’s got you?”

   “Fry does, of course.” The brave defender in question had used up his energy in telling the story. He was inadvertently leaning against her, eyes half-closed.

   “Perfect,” the doctor muttered.

   The nurse shifted uneasily. “Uh, Doc? It’s the President... of Earth and, er, he says he wants to talk to you, um, personally.”

   By this point, every eye, whether it had a twin or not, was fixed on Chastity.

 Munda gave Chastity a look obviously meant to convey something significant, but its meaning was lost on her. “I don’t think you should keep the president waiting.”

“Of course not.” Chastity replied, fighting back oscillating waves of giddiness and nerves. She hesitated a moment longer, and then darted through the curtains to make her way to the administration area.

Undeniably the centre of attention now, Chastity plunked herself down in front of the comm station and tried to figure how this particular model worked. After some minutes of cautious prodding, a rather nasty shock, and then extremely cautious prodding, Chastity managed to establish the connection.

   “Yes, hello!” she said breathlessly as the video link grinded and wheezed its way into life. The striking face of her suitor lit up into a boyish, yet disturbing smile.

   “Cupcake!” he greeted her enthusiastically.

   “Uh, hello President Nixon,” A girlish blush coloured her cheeks.

   The ruler of the planet chuckled nervously, “Well, well, don’t you look arrooo!” he cleared his throat slightly, “Sorry, that gets away from me sometimes; I meant, ‘it’s good to see you.’ Did you miss me as much as I missed you?”

   Chastity knew she was acting the fool, but she couldn’t help herself. There was just something about his eyes that drew her in, something about that hypnotic stare that... er, hypnotized her. It didn’t hurt that according to mutant standards he wasn’t half bad lookin’ either. Everything was in the right place... well, the places he still had anyway.

   “Pumpkin?” He looked a little concerned.

   “Sorry, honey, I was just ... daydreaming.”

   The President approved.

   “You sure about this?” he asked for what seemed to Morris like the eightieth time.

   “Yes, yesyesyes. Now, please, stop asking,” he pleaded, gingerly flexing his legs. Morris had slept through most of the day. If it had done him any good at all, he didn’t feel it. Grogginess plagued him, making him feel sluggish and out of sorts. The pain in his side throbbed and burned with the remnants of infection. He inhaled deeply and held, feeling fire spread around his midsection before letting his breath out in a whoosh. Morris felt that as long as he could feel that burning, he could keep moving.

   “When will they get here?” he demanded into the irritatingly peaceful room.

   “Sooner than you think,” came the placid reply, “and sooner than you’ll be ready for them, I’d wager.” Morris began pacing unsteadily, feeling trapped. “Relax, will you?” Garin chided him. “There’s no good wearing yourself out. They’ll get here when they get here.”

It had been a long time since anyone had spoken to him like he was a small child. A sharp pang struck him. How he missed Munda! With a weary sigh, Morris capitulated and sat down on the couch which had almost become a second home.

Less than a minute later, footsteps heralded Maddie’s arrival. Three other mutants were in tow. Morris sprang up to greet them, but not before he heard a wry, “Told you so.”

   “Morris, meet Chester, Harold and Dupe.” All three were younger than Maddie, and they bore a striking family resemblance to each other. Brothers then. There was an unusual symmetry and grace in their forms that was rarely seen among mutants. They seemed stretched out, from head to toe, including unnaturally long fingers that faded in colour from pure ebony to a dusty blue. Though they smiled in friendly greeting, there was something mournful about them, and Morris couldn’t shake the sense of oddness he felt emanating from the family. “They’re going to help you get back to the warehouse.”

   “’Preciate it, guys,” he drawled.

   Wasting no time, for which Morris was grateful, Chester unrolled a battered plastic sheet and pressed it flat. A holo-model of the surface of New New York sputtered into existence.

   “As you can see,” Chester murmured in an excessively sibilant voice, “it is a long route, treacherous in places.” He traced a meandering path among the miniature buildings.

   “It won’t be easy for you Morris,” Maddie cautioned. Morris did not take his eye off the maps. He personally did not believe anything could be harder than being parted from Munda and Leela when he knew they were in danger.

   “We must not stop moving unnecessarily,” Chester continued, ”for any delay will draw attention it would be best to avoid.” The other two brothers watched him in unnerving silence. Morris tried to ignore the way they made the hairs on his neck stand on end.

   “I’ve traveled above ground before,” he said  with a confidence that was not entirely unjustified. Warmth infused him as he remembered the excitement of getting to walk around in public with their daughter. Things hadn’t exactly worked out the way they’d planned, but it had ended happily nonetheless.

   “Not in these circumstances, kid,” Garin grunted. Before Morris could quite get over the unexpectedness of being called kid, Chester was speaking again.

   “We must cross here,” he hissed softly. “The bridge will be the most difficult and dangerous part of the escape. You are not well, so we must not use the activator.”

   Visual and genetic quick-scans were used in random sweeps to ensure passengers using “people tubes” were in fact, “people,”or at least people according to the definition in Right Thinkers Weekly. The system was by no means perfect (It was after all, developed by public works) and had caused the occasional interstellar incident. It had also inadvertently added to Leela’s privately held theory that the universe actively hated her, since tubes occasionally refused to cart her anywhere at the most inconvenient times.

   Taking advantage of the flaws, technically astute mutants had managed to design “activators” which circumvented the security systems.

   “So you’re saying we’ll have to crawl there? It’ll take hours just to get across the water.”

   “We know, but the pressures in the tube will aggravate-”

   Morris interrupted, “and crawling for hours on my hands and knees won’t?” Maddie frowned at him and cast an unhappy look at her father. “Besides which,” Morris continued, “We’re trying to avoid attention and move quickly. Someone’s gonna notice the four maniacs crawling through a people tube over New New York Harbour.”

   Turanga Morris was persistent, and desperate to get out quickly. Reluctantly, they had to agree to use the activator, despite the risks to Morris’ health.

   The three brothers were laden down with supplies, more for the people they would encounter than for their own needs. Morris had been soundly scolded when he’d offered to do some of the lugging, even by the soft-spoken Chester. The other two brothers remained eerily quiet.

   Finally, they were ready to depart.

   “Keep your heads down then,” Garin said in a voice a bit more cheerful than the situation warranted.

   “Thanks, Garin, for everything. When things are back to normal, let’s go fishing.” The older mutant’s face lit up with pleasure.

   “Sure, I’ll give you a few pointers,” he said playfully.

   Maddie smoothly stepped between them. “Don’t listen to anything Dad tells you.”

Morris chuckled over Garin’s grumbled, “Kids these days.”

Maddie startled him by pulling him into a quick hug. “I really hope it works out for you.” she murmured, releasing him.

   “Yeah, me too,” Morris said, his smile becoming uncertain.

   They left quickly; Morris was in no mood for further delays. Although his injuries began protesting before they’d even reached the exit point, he felt his spirits improve. Every pain-wracked step he took brought him closer to life, and he hoped desperately that life would be what he found.


“Knock three times!” Nixon belted, then waited impatiently while his latest half-witted peon took the cue, rapping unevenly on the wall next to the imposing mirror. “On the ceiling if you want me!” he bellowed in something that could be said to be a singing voice only by Kif Kroker, who was very, very good at placating superiors. “Twice on the pipe!” Again, there was an awkward delay as Lackey the Second searched frantically for a pipe.

“Er… Clunk, clunk?” he offered weakly when none could be found.

“Clunk? Clunk?! Pipes go “clink”, you idiot! Clink! Not clunk!” Fortunately for the twenty-year old computer science major, Nixon was not currently perched in his threatening, if oddly feminine, robot body, which was being refitted in anticipation of his upcoming press conference, so the dictator had to settle for the more traditional approach for expressing his mighty wrath.

Lackey stared in surprise at the President’s protruding tongue before managing to look suitably abashed. Finally, Nixon relented; he was after all, in the first sweet blossoming of true Wuv.

“Never mind, I’ve lost my place anyway.” He gestured, an awkward maneuver for a head confined in a jar, at the beautifully framed photo of his unexpected beloved. “Look at her, Stanley. Isn’t she breath-taking?”

Stanley, whose name was not, in fact, Stanley, agreed heartily, because he knew what was good for him.

Truthfully, she was indeed a breathtakingly hideous caricature of humanity. Even for a mutant, the woman was clearly not at her best. The picture had actually been snapped by Nixon for the movie sequel to his memoirs, shortly before he’d decided not to crush her into a bloody, chunky-style paste. Chastity did, however, look about as nice as anyone could be expected to look in such a situation.

   “What do you find most attractive about her? Nixon asked dreamily, joining the proud ranks of those who ask questions with no right answer. The most obvious example of this sort of question is the perennial favorite, “Do I look fat in this?” but don’t discount the critically acclaimed, “Would you like to die by fire or acid?” That last question was very likely to follow the first if Lackey wasn’t very careful about his response.

 Visions of his crunchy death sent Lackey’s blood pressure skyrocketing until he found a plausible distraction. “Oh, sir! Look at that! You have fifteen recorded messages from the Nimbus, all flagged top priority!”

   Nixon seemed less than impressed. “Listen, Crabapple, I’m the President of Earth; every message I get, from misspelled chain mail to ads about psychic fairs, is marked top priority.” Lackey, whose name was not, in fact, Crabapple, had absolutely no idea what to say in response to this, so he stared hopelessly at the President’s left nostril, wishing for any kind of reprieve.

   “Ah, fine then. Play the thing then, lackey” Irritated, Nixon began to mutter none too subtly. “You set yourself up as Supreme Leader of some misbegotten mud puddle and everyone depends on you for everything.”

   Lackey, whose name was in fact, Lackey, happily complied with the air of someone who would live to lick boot another day.

   With a hum that was produced purely for effect, the answering machine spat out a hologram of the Nimbus deck. Centered on the deck was the coolly confident figure of Agent Orange.

   “President Nixon, Agent Orange reporting all is well aboard the Nimbus. Captain Brannigan has er, retired voluntarily for the evening, leaving the ship in my control. Requesting permission to interrogate the other prisoners. Orange out.”

   Nixon swished approvingly in his jar. “Told you so. Orange is near the top of the spectrum… of command for these political kidnappings. Commander Blue purports to be loyal but he gets steamed too easily when things get hot, and Lieutenant Purple can be royally stupid, unless someone’s watching her.” The President swished again, grimly, before brightening.  “But Orange? He’s a good soldier, a good leader.” Nixon chuckled lightly. “No one takes the green out of a recruit like Agent Orange.”

   Wisely, the trembling youth asked the machine to display the next message.

   “Orange here,” the cool confidence had been replaced by the ineffable air of someone cool and confident reporting something of the bad news variety. “I’m afraid I must report that Captain Brannigan has confined himself to the brig in an attempt to seduce the prisoners,” Orange added a calculated pause, “to our way of thinking regarding the mutant threat. We are monitoring the situation closely and are ready to take any action you advise. The crew is uneasy but accepting of my command.” Lackey heard oddly muffled sounds that he could swear were laughs. The agent glared fiercely at someone unseen and the sounds subsided. “We will extract Brannigan if you wish, sir, but I believe having him in the brig will be beneficial… because of his persuasive nature,” he added quickly, losing cool by the second. “Orange out.”

   It had become clear to Lackey that Nixon was less than interested in the content of all these reports. He garnered that impression based on the fact that the President had his eyes closed. And he was singing again. And he periodically stopped singing in order to demand that Lackey use a little more hip action because the music in his day required it. In the meantime, the messages played on. By the sixth message, the agent was literally bored to tears and getting frustrated by the lack of response. The seventh message was delivered by a different agent, the other apparently dealing with ship business, though Lackey rather suspected Agent Orange was indulging in miniature golf, judging by the white balls whizzing through the air.

   During the eighth message however, the agent had returned, and this time he looked a bit concerned.

   Over the following three messages, the Agent was clearly becoming frazzled and dark temptation was hovering in his eyes. He began to beg for a response, demanding orders but he still did not attract the attention of the President, who was jutting out his lips into strange contortions, occasionally adding a little tongue action. Lackey reeled when he understood what was happening, but he firmly thrust the thought of Nixon having a little lip and tongue action out of his mind, much as he thrust his hips in time to the President's humming, that is, completely ineffectively. It was just one of a large number of sanity- preserving strategies he’d learned in the course of his employment as President Appeaser. Lackey did not expect to have a long and illustrious career.
 Message after message had tried and failed to capture the President’s interest. Finally, the most recent message managed to pierce the armor of Nixon’s lust-induced apathy.

   “Mr. President!” Agent Orange half-shouted over the frenzied din going on behind him. “If we do not receive orders within the next few hours I’m afraid I can no longer ensure the safety of the prisoners, or indeed, our continued control over the Nimbus! For all that's holy, answer me!”

   “Hmm. That doesn’t sound good.”

   Lackey nodded in solemn agreement.

Have no idea what's going on? That's okay, neither do I! Incidentally, there are two jokes in here that are all JBERGES. (You is 1 gud beta, freind.)

Urban Legend
« #390 : 06-25-2006 21:53 »
« : 06-25-2006 21:53 »

Awesome Layla!  There are so many subplots going on in this thing right now...  I have no idea where this is going, but I'm really looking forward to finding out! 

“No one takes the green out of a recruit like Agent Orange.”

Urban Legend
« #391 : 06-26-2006 00:03 »

The Lackey name bit had me rolling! As did leela's belief that the universe hated her cause of the people tube malfunction!

I love this story so freaking much!

Bending Unit
« #392 : 06-26-2006 07:09 »

Wow, an update! Yay!  :love:

Yay, Munda likes Fry!  :love: I love the way he always has a rambling story, even in the most dire of situations. Although I got muddled when Chastity's name turned into Cassidy at one point...  :p That was a mistake, right?

Nixon was hilarious, if a little extremely disturbing.

I was starting to get confused by all the subplots (which is a good thing; I like being confused sometimes!) but I get it now, just about, and I'm intrigued. I can't wait to see how this all plays out... I get the feeling I'll be very pleasantly surprised!  :D

Urban Legend
« #393 : 06-26-2006 10:24 »
« : 06-26-2006 10:24 »

Although I got muddled when Chastity's name turned into Cassidy at one point
Ack!  I thought I had fixed that! Oh well, that's what ravenous readers are for, picking up stuff I missed...  Oh, also raining praise and emoticons upon the umbrellaless Layla, I suppose.

Great to get back in the swing of things, Layls.  I enjoyed Morris's scenes particularly, along with Nixon singing cheesy oldies.  Points for the color puns, and for illustrating the plight of the 20 year old computer science major   :p
It had become clear to Lackey that Nixon was less than interested in the content of all these reports. He garnered that impression based on the fact that the President had his eyes closed. And he was singing again. And he periodically stopped singing in order to demand that Lackey use a little more hip action because the music in his day required it. In the meantime, the messages played on. By the sixth message, the agent was literally bored to tears and getting frustrated by the lack of response. The seventh message was delivered by a different agent, the other apparently dealing with ship business, though Lackey rather suspected Agent Orange was indulging in miniature golf, judging by the white balls whizzing through the air.
[/small]I like the voice that you slip into here; gives me faith that you could write full comedic prose if you wanted to.  Excellent work.  Good luck figuring out your own story, and keep me up to date when you finally do.

Liquid Emperor
« #394 : 06-26-2006 14:32 »

Love the story, but.....whats happened to leela
Ralph Snart

Agent Provocateur
Near Death Star Inhabitant
DOOP Secretary
« #395 : 06-26-2006 14:44 »
« : 06-26-2006 14:44 »

Ditto the above.  Munda is awfully composed considering that her only, beloved daughter is missing.

Ralph is awfully composed knowing that the last time we saw Leela, she was drowning.
PCC Fred

Space Pope
« #396 : 06-26-2006 17:48 »

I agree with Ralph.  Fry seems to lift Munda spirits very easily, under the circumstances.

Other then that I liked the update, particularly the messages coming in from Agent Orange.

The future's bright, the future's... Layla
Ralph Snart

Agent Provocateur
Near Death Star Inhabitant
DOOP Secretary
« #397 : 06-26-2006 18:06 »

Now that you've reared your head Fred...

I seem to remember a certain mutant, deaf, stuck in the sewers, having been stood up for a date and feeling pretty damned low about it...

Does this bring any memories back for you?

Starship Captain
« #398 : 06-27-2006 09:31 »

I like the update Layla. Nixon was really great.
Can't wait to see what's going to happen to Leela, Amy, Kif, Zapp... Oh and what about Nibbler? If I remember correctly, he's in trouble right? (I think he is...)

Anyway, that part was great, (Fry's short story at the beginning was priceless.)

Keep it up.

Liquid Emperor
« #399 : 06-27-2006 10:35 »

“What do you find most attractive about her? Nixon asked dreamily, joining the proud ranks of those who ask questions with no right answer. The most obvious example of this sort of question is the perennial favorite, “Do I look fat in this?” but don’t discount the critically acclaimed, “Would you like to die by fire or acid?” That last question was very likely to follow the first if Lackey wasn’t very careful about his response.

I love this bit, I love the whole story, but this bits really funny. But do you know what I love more? SHIPPY BITS, and this storys full of them. 1000001/1000001. This story rocks.

But (shudders at sudden idea) please don't kill Leela   :cry: (faints in horror at the very thought)   
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