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Author Topic: Fan stuff from the fellow whose pants are a wonder  (Read 3510 times)
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Bending Unit
« on: 07-26-2009 19:50 »
« Last Edit on: 09-22-2009 06:26 »

Here's my first fanfic, which I wrote after seeing the Futurama films and feeling that there needed to be some explanation for Fry and Leela's wildly variable relationship throughout the films between the end of BBS and the final scene of ItWGY (which I've taken a little creative license with timewise). Hopefully it adds some explanation for their antagonistic attitudes towards each other in BwaBB and the sudden switch back/development into good friends in ItWGY (and it's not too long and dense either)

A girl’s best friend


Leela, who had been staring absently out of a window of her parents’ house in the sewers of New New York, awoke from her reverie with a start as some part of her mind registered the fact that she had just been asked a question.

“Oh.....yes, they’re very nice,” she said quickly, hoping that the uninspired response would escape comment.

Judging by the frown that Turanga Munda gave her in response, she could only conclude that it had not worked.

“Are you listening to anything I’m saying, young lady?” her mother asked crossly, tapping Leela sternly on the shoulder with a tentacle. “Your father wants to get me some earrings for my birthday, and I wanted your opinion on what ones you thought I should ask for, amethyst or diamond. Amethysts would certainly go nicely with my hair, but there’s just something about diamonds, isn’t there? Mind you, he was going to get me a ring instead at first, but even in the 30th century, jewellers don’t make the rings large enough to fit on my tentacles.”

Leela sighed, biting back a momentary desire to say that she had more pressing concerns on her mind than what jewellery her mother should get.

“I’m sorry, mom. I’m just finding it difficult to concentrate on things right now.”

“Yes, I can see that,” Munda remarked tartly.  “Well, never mind the earrings for now. I thought there was something on your mind when you said that you needed to talk to me, otherwise I wouldn’t have told your father to go fishing on Lake Mutagenic. Is this something to do with that surface dweller you work with? Fry?”

“Oh mom, isn’t it always?” Leela asked with some feeling. She stood up abruptly and began pacing back and forth restlessly. “Life has been pretty crazy lately.”

Her mother raised her eyebrow quizzically. “More so than usual?” she asked dryly. “That place seems to have crazy things happening on a daily basis. Although when you have a mad scientist as a boss, that’s probably to be expected.”

Leela took a breath, held it, and let it out again. “You have no idea. Things have been so complicated lately, and I can’t say I like it that much.”

“Well in that case, it might be an idea to explain it,” Munda remarked in a tone of voice that left no room for argument. “And do stop walking up and down like that, you’re making me nervous.”

Leela nodded and settled back into her chair. She gazed into the small fire that was flickering in a corner of the room, trying to find the right words to begin with. “Do you remember Lars’ funeral and the time paradox afterwards?” she asked.

Her mother just looked at her silently, her eye narrowing slightly.

“Ok, stupid question,” she admitted. “I suppose it’s hard to forget, when they involved Lars turning out to be a double of Fry and the universe tearing open. But at any rate, that’s where it all began....”

_____________________________ _____________________________ _______

“Well, we’re all boned,” Bender observed as the tear in the universe spread and widened.

“Oh my, yes!” Professor Farnsworth exclaimed, peering at the rift through his milk bottle glasses. “If only Amy hadn’t dropped all my notes for the Parabox into the fire last Xmas, we could have safely escaped into an alternate universe. And there’s no absolutely no time for me to reinvent one before that rift tears the Universe to pieces. So, I suppose I might as well let you spend your last few hours enjoying yourself before everyone in existence dies in the most horrible fashion possible!”

He stared round at the Planet Express staff expectantly, apparently waiting for thanks, and seemed disappointed when no one appeared to notice his offer.

“Sweet bongo of the Congo, do you realise how much paperwork I have to file before the universe ends, people?” Hermes cried. “And that doesn’t include the paperwork about the universe ending. Oh, I’ll never be a grade 36 bureaucrat now!”

“I never got to interface with that hot repairbot at the local spaceship maintenance facility!” Bender grumbled.

“And Zoidberg wants to take all his friends for a last meal in the local dumpster! What, where is everyone going? Awww...”

This last comment was prompted by the sight of the Planet Express staff leaving the room en masse as fast as possible. Bender was the first to make an escape by the simple method of bypassing the door and walking right through the nearest wall, and even the Professor managed to get up to a rapid shuffle.

It wasn’t until Leela had fought her own way out of the room that she noticed that Fry was missing. By squeezing past Hermes and Scruffy as they hurried down a corridor, she managed to grab Amy’s arm and bring her to a halt.

“Wait a minute, Amy!” she exclaimed.

“Spleesh, Leela!” Amy protested. “What do you want?”

“Mainly to ask if you’ve seen Fry. But also to tell you to watch out for that large patch of oil over there on the floor. Looks like one of the fuel lines for the Planet Express ship is leaking.”

“Well, there’s no danger of me walking into it,” Amy said firmly. “Now if you can let go of my arm, my parents are already calling to try and make me feel guilty that they’ll never have a grandchild now!”

A mischievous smile slowly appeared on her face. “But then, maybe now’s a good time to tell them about all the grandchildren they have swimming around in the swamp on Amphibios 9. They won’t be able to speak for hours once they hear about that!”

She pulled free and hurried down the corridor. “Oh, and I think I heard Fry say he’d be in the lounge,” she called over her shoulder, neatly sidestepping the patch of leaking oil at the very last moment.

“Guh!” she said, half turning to grin smugly at Leela while still walking. “And you thought I would just step right in it...”

There was a yelp and a thud as she walked straight into the stepladder that had been left next to the oil leak by Scruffy. Leela winced as Amy took a couple of involuntary steps backwards straight into the oil and inevitably lost her balance, ending up face down in the oil. The ladder teetered wildly for a moment, almost settled, and then decided to finish the job by falling over on Amy with a loud crash, making Leela wince again.

She watched in silent horror as Amy struggled out from under the ladder, a process that served mainly to cover her further in oil. It crossed her mind to help, but the realisation that she would only end up covered in oil as well made her keep her distance.
“I’d just throw that jumpsuit in the garbage, Amy!” she called. “You’ll never get the oil out of it. And thanks for letting me know where Fry is.”

She walked on down the corridor in the direction of the lounge, which was just a little way down the corridor.

“Fry, are you in here?” she asked as she entered the lounge, only to have her voice trail off into silence as she saw him. “Oh Lord....”

“Hi, Leela!” Fry said cheerfully from the couch.

If his upbeat greeting had been meant to soften her reaction, it fell flat as she folded her arms and frowned at him by way of response.

“What?” he protested. “If the universe is about to end, I want to die as I’ve lived.”
Leela rolled her eye. “Sitting around in your underpants, drinking Slurm, and watching repeats of All My Circuits? We may only have a few hours left to live. Surely you can spend them doing something more worthwhile?”

Fry frowned thoughtfully, and she could almost hear the neurons firing in his brain from the unaccustomed mental activity before he reached a decision.

“You’re right, Leela!” he exclaimed with a sudden burst of enthusiasm. In a display of dexterity that secretly rather impressed her, he managed to pull his clothes back on, throw the beer into the nearest bin, and turn the TV off. “We should spend the time we have left together!”

“Fry...” Leela began, cursing herself for giving him the opening, but she was too late.
“You said once that’d you’d only go out with me if the universe was about to end, so how about it?”

Leela glanced quickly out of a window in the hope that the rift might have just been a figment of her imagination, but to her disappointment, it was still very much there. She sank onto the sofa next to Fry, glad that at least Bender was absent. Dealing with Fry was going to be a challenge. With Bender present as well, it would have been an ordeal for the ages. He’s probably on a final petty crime spree, knowing him, she thought briefly.

“Have you forgotten that I almost married Lars?” she asked bluntly, deciding on the spot that she wasn’t in the mood to pull her punches. “He was sweet, kind, funny, and intelligent. I loved him, and there’s not a second that goes by where I don’t miss him. You’re a quick worker, I’ll give you that much. He’s barely cold, and you’re already asking me out.”

Fry looked away, momentarily embarrassed. “I’m sorry,” he said. “But there’s one thing I haven’t forgotten, Leela. He’s me. Whatever you saw in him to make you love him, it’s something I must be capable of too.”

Leela opened her mouth to retort that Lars had been more mature than Fry could ever dream of being, but then stopped short as the thought hit her than she might be judging him too harshly. On some notable occasions, most memorably the time when he had been infected by those super parasites, he had proven himself close to Lars’s equal in terms of maturity, which was no small feat for someone who was proud if he could drink his own bodyweight in Slurm in a single day, and who had once persuaded her to watch an old TV show from the Stupid Ages called Red Dwarf on the grounds that it featured one of his greatest heroes. The fact that his hero turned out to be called Dave Lister and was a lazy slob like Fry himself had not impressed her (although she had secretly rather admired the other main character, Arnold Rimmer). Most of all though, she couldn’t forget how Fry had set aside his own interests and acted out of genuine selflessness when he’d set aside his own interests in the attempt to reconcile her and Lars.

Fry seemed to sense her uncertainty. “I can be mature too,” he said softly. He reached out and took her hands. “Why not give me a chance? If the only man you said you could ever love was a double of me, doesn’t that tell you something? In a way, Lars isn’t really dead. He’s sitting here right now, looking at you. I know I’ve told you this before, but maybe you need to hear it again. I love you, Leela.”

“Oh, Fry,” Leela said weakly, hunting desperately for an irrefutable response. “I know you mean it, but....”

“...but maybe actions speak louder than words,” Fry said, not waiting for her to finish. Before she could react, he leaned forward and kissed her. Leela’s eye widened and she reached up, thinking she was about to push him away, but to her shock, she found herself wrapping her arms around his neck instead. And the only coherent thought she could muster was that she had never felt anything so right, even with Lars. The moment seemed to stretch out forever as she matched and returned his kiss, and at last it was actually Fry who broke away first. A long silence followed, during which she huddled back into the couch, folding her arms defensively while trying to collect her now even more chaotic thoughts.

“So,” Fry said finally. “Dinner?”

Somehow, she fought down a wild impulse to accept. Instead, she forced herself to stand up and walk across to the window, knowing that if she continued sitting there, she would be unable to say no. She leant her head against the glass, and the blessed sensation of coolness against her skin brought enough clarity back to her mind to silence the part of her that still wanted to tell Fry yes.  This is all going too fast, she thought to herself, feeling a growing sense of unease at the way he had so easily gotten past the defences that she had built up over a lifetime of self-reliance.

“I can’t,” she said, driven on by that feeling of disquiet. “It was a mistake; I shouldn’t have let it happen. If you’re my friend, Fry, don’t ask me again.” Because I don’t think I could stop myself from saying yes.

There was a silence behind her, and she was glad she couldn’t see Fry’s face. “And that’s all?” he asked. “It was just a mistake? You could have fooled me.”

“That’s all,” she confirmed, thanking whatever gods there might be that he couldn’t see her face either. “I’m sorry, I know you love me, but I won’t lie to you: I don’t love you back.”

“I don’t believe you,” he said flatly. “If it’s true, then look me in the eyes and tell me that.” And suddenly there was an unexpected anger in his voice. “Look at me, Leela!

A sense of calm came over her as she realised what she was going to have to do.

Bracing herself, she turned round and looked him squarely in the face. “Haven’t I said no enough times, Fry? What more do I have to do to make you understand? Did you really think that just kissing me and telling me you love me would make me fall for you, when it hasn’t before? Do you expect me to be thinking entirely clearly, after everything that’s happened with Lars?”

The coldness she heard in her own voice almost made her recoil, but it wasn’t enough to make her relent.  Nevertheless, it did its job. She saw a light die in Fry’s eyes as her words sank in, and his face went still.

“Then I’m sorry too,” he said finally, and the resignation in his voice tore at her as he stood up and left the room silently.

Once his footfalls had faded away and she was sure he had gone, she sagged against the window as the strength suddenly ran out of her. The view below of pedestrians hurrying along the sidewalk blurred as her eye watered, and a sudden flash of anger at the uncharacteristic display of emotion drove her to swipe it away.

However, the room didn’t stay empty for long. “Bad news, everyone!” the Professor exclaimed as he entered the lounge only a couple of minutes later, followed closely by Zoidberg and Hermes.

He stopped suddenly, as the atmosphere in the room was thick enough even for him to sense. “Is something wrong, Leela?”

Leela quickly forced a smile. “No, I’m fine. I’m sure we’d love to hear your bad news, Professor,” she said in order to change the subject, hoping that the smile didn’t look too strained.

“Excellent!” the Professor said briskly, moving on swiftly. “I’ve been looking at the tear in the universe through the Smelloscope, and it’s actually stabilised! We may not die at all!”

“But isn’t that actually good news, mon?” Hermes asked dubiously.

“No, not at all! It means I’ll have to start paying you to sit around and watch TV all day again!”

_____________________________ _____________________________ _______

Munda shook her head doubtfully as Leela paused to sip a glass of water. “Are you sure that was the right decision to make, Leela?” she asked. “I have to say that it seems like you made that choice mainly because you were alarmed by your own reactions, rather than for a more considered reason. You do seem reluctant to let people get close to you. But then, I suppose your father and I are to blame for that. Maybe if we’d kept you with us instead of taking you to the orphanarium, you’d be different. Do you remember when that space bee stung you, and Fry stayed by your bed the whole time? He adores you, dear.”

 “Of course I remember!” Leela snapped. “He even said he loved me, and I believe him, but he’s too.....unpredictable. Do you remember those parasites he had? He was amazing, but it was all down to them. When he got rid of them, he was right back to being the same old Fry. And you wonder why I’m reluctant to trust him! What if I give him another chance and the same thing happens?”

“And what if it doesn’t?” Munda countered. “But I won’t argue with you. What happened next?”

Leela laughed mirthlessly. “Mom, can’t you guess? Something only Fry could do, of course!”

_____________________________ _____________________________ _______

A large crowd stood in front of the Jumbotron screen which was displaying an image of the rift, and ignoring the considerably larger real rift that was directly overhead, and Fry reflected for a moment on the fact that even in the 30th century, people would still rather watch something on TV than go outside to see it. Nevertheless, he headed towards the crowd, drawn there by an instinctive need to lose himself in a mass of people. Leela’s final words repeated themselves steadily in his head, and he was glad of the slight distraction that the screen provided.

I’ve been a fool, he thought to himself sombrely.She doesn’t love me, and she never will. And I’ve wasted so many years trying to make her love me, with nothing to show for it.

With an effort, he pushed that line of thought away and took a step forwards to concentrate on the screen, which seemed a much more preferable option to dwelling on Leela’s comments. “Somehow, seeing it on the Jumbotron makes it so much more real,” he mused out loud.

To his surprise, someone answered him. “It’s so scary. What are you supposed to do when the whole universe is coming to an end?”

Their eyes met simultaneously and Fry, as ever acting on impulse, said the first thing that came into his head. For a second, he felt a sharp stab of guilt over Leela, but then he thought again of her last words and the guilt seemed to wither away to nothing. “I have a thought!”


Later, he found himself lying in bed, with Colleen leaning against him, and feeling in a more optimistic mood than earlier. Feeling the need to celebrate somehow, he reached for a stick of bubblegum that was lying on a side table, and blew a bubble before it burst. Colleen giggled as he picked it off his face and flicked it across the room without thinking, and he gave her a surprised look.

“What is it?” she asked, seeing his expression.

“Oh, nothing,” he answered. “It’s just that Le.....someone I know would nail me to the front of Madison Square Cube if sh....they saw me do that.”

Colleen giggled again. “Are you talking about your girlfriend?”

“No!” Fry said a little too hastily, unable to avoid feeling a fresh pang of regret. “She’s just a friend.” And maybe if I’d realised sooner that that’s all we could ever be, it would have been better for both of us. After all, Leela would never put up with me flicking bubblegum across the room.

“Well, she sounds like she needs to have some fun.” Colleen answered. “Of course, I don’t mind if she’s really your girlfriend. Don’t you think it’d be better if we didn’t all limit ourselves to one person?”

She turned over and looked at Fry expectantly, but the unspoken message went some distance over his head. Nevertheless, he nodded in agreement, thinking of all the time he had spent in a futile pursuit of Leela. If she turned me down, she can hardly expect me not to go out with anyone else, especially not someone who isn’t so serious and bossy all the time.

Colleen smiled happily. “Wait here,” she said, climbing out of the bed. “I’ve got a surprise!”

She was back a few moments later. “Here,” she said, handing him a bag. “This is the sort of thing your friend needs to do.”

“What?” Fry asked curiously.

“Oh, seeing how much cotton candy you can eat at once! It’s so much fun!”

Fry’s eyes lit up, and all thoughts of Leela were swept away. “Colleen,” he said, opening the bag, “you’re my kind of girl.”


Several hours later, Hermes drummed his clipboard impatiently against the Planet Express conference table. “Alright people,” he said. “I now declare the daily morning meeting in session. Bender mon, are you taking the minutes?”

By way of answer, Bender proceeded to replay his statement, and Hermes nodded in satisfaction.

“Then let it be recorded that Philip J Fry, Planet Express delivery boy first class, is...”
“Here!” Fry announced, wandering in casually, and all eyes turned to him, not least that of an exhausted Leela. She had lain awake half the night, feeling guilty about the last words she had said to him yesterday, and had finally decided to try and make it up to him in the morning. He was unshaven, looked as tired as she was, and generally looked like he’d been mugged by an Omicronian, an impression that the cotton candy strands stuck to his t-shirt and sticking out of his hair did nothing to dispel. Nevertheless, he looked cheerful enough.

“...is here,” Hermes finished fussily, choosing to ignore the interruption, as Fry dropped into his seat. “Now, the first item of business is....”

He stopped as Fry produced a 10 dollar note and tossed it on the table on front of him. “Fry, what’s that?”

“My bet that you can’t limbo dance under this table, Hermes,” Fry replied jovially. “Anyone else want to chip in?”

“I do!” Zoidberg said eagerly. He searched through his pockets and found a few coins which he ostentatiously put on top of Fry’s money. “Look friends, Zoidberg has come into money!”

“Let me see those!” Bender said, and picked a coin up without waiting for an answer. “Zoidberg, you Decapodian meatbag, this is Chapek 9 currency! It’s as worthless as your medical degree. I might as well keep these, for all the good they’ll do you.”

“Oh no!” Zoidberg said disappointedly. “My cousin Zoidfarb sent them to me recently, saying they were very valuable.”

“Enough, already!” Hermes exclaimed irritably. “Fry mon, are you ill or something? You’re covered in cotton candy, you want me to limbo dance for a bet, and you’re never at work before 12 o’clock on Mondays. It’s not even 9 o’clock yet!”

“Excuse me, I’m the doctor here,” Zoidberg interrupted. “If Fry is ill, then I, Zoidberg, will diagnose the illness.”

“Oh my, yes,” the Professor added. “If Fry is suddenly acting strangely, he could have been infected by space leeches. They suck your brain dry, and leave you a mindless shell. Hurry up Zoidberg, if there’s any chance he has a space leech infection, there’s no time to waste!”

Amy frowned thoughtfully. “Maybe he was infected by the leeches when he was a child?” she suggested.

“Oh twaddle!” the Professor exclaimed dismissively. “If he’d ever been infected, he’d be a drooling vegetable!”

“Maybe not,” Amy replied brightly. “My old nursie always used to say that it was better to catch something when you were young than when you were an adult. If Fry had these space leeches infect him when he was a kid, perhaps they only sucked up part of his brain. Wouldn’t that explain why he acts like he’s only got half a brain?”

Fry gave her a mistrustful look, suspecting he was being made fun of, but she seemed perfectly sincere.

Meanwhile, Zoidberg was only too glad of a chance to put what he optimistically called his medical skills to use. “Hold still, friend,” he said, flexing his pincers. “I just need to examine your brain.”

“I’m not ill!” Fry objected, quickly forgetting all about Amy’s comment as Zoidberg advanced on him with his pincers at the ready, but it was a half-hearted protest. The thought of being examined by Zoidberg had made grown men weep before now, but it was still preferable to the thought of space leeches eating his brain.

They all watched silently, and with increasing embarrassment, while Zoidberg proceeded to examine Fry. Leela was the first one to speak. “Zoidberg, what are you doing?”

Zoidberg straightened up. “What, are you questioning the doctor? I’m checking his brain! Though if Fry would stop covering his brain with his hands and crossing his legs, it’d be a lot easier.”

Leela sighed and tapped her head. “Zoidberg, the human brain is up here. That’s Fry’s .....wing dang doodle you’re trying to examine.”

Zoidberg merely looked at her blankly.

“Oh, Lord,” she muttered. “That’s his...um....his male jelly....depositor...,” she elaborated.

“It is? I always get them mixed up, especially after you told me that human males only have enough blood to run one of them at once.”

Leela suddenly developed an intense interest in the ceiling, and everyone else at the table avoided looking at her.

“Moving on....” Hermes said after an awkward silence had prevailed for a while, in an attempt to regain control of the meeting. “Fry, if you’re not ill, then what’s the matter?”

“Nothing,” Fry answered. He leaned back in his chair and put his feet up on the table. “My friends, I am no longer single. I met a girl last night!” he announced dramatically.

“Is she rich?” Bender immediately demanded.

“And is she as cute as me?” Amy asked.

In the ensuing flurry of questions, Leela was glad that all the attention was on Fry and no one therefore noticed the way her face went rigid before she was able to regain a calm expression. The first thought that crossed her mind was: I kept myself awake all last night for this?, which was followed closely by I said he was a quick worker, but I didn’t realise just how quick, and finally a bitter So much for his saying he loves me.

Through it all, she couldn’t help noticing that Fry was avoiding looking at her. He was happy enough to speak to all the other Planet Express staff, but his gaze quickly slid past her whenever he turned to speak to someone.

The meeting broke up soon afterwards, with the Professor giving them their first mission, a routine journey to deliver some replacement gopher robots to the Moon’s Lunar Park. Leela lingered behind while everyone left, using the pretext that her wristlojackimator needed some updating to avoid having to speak to Fry. But she had barely stepped out of the meeting room before she nearly ran straight into Fry and Bender, much to her dismay.

“Hey Leela!” Bender exclaimed. “Have a look at these coins of Zoidberg’s. I was just telling Fry about them.”

“Bender, why do you want them?” she asked, keeping her eye fixed on him to save having to look at Fry. “You said they were worthless.”

Bender grinned. “Oh, they are. But only on Earth. On Chapek 9, they’re a lot of money. Well, that’s my next vacation sorted out. I’m going to be knee deep in hookerbots, baby!”

He sauntered off, jauntily humming the theme from All My Circuits, and Leela and Fry were left standing alone in the corridor.

“Hi, Leela,” Fry said tentatively. “Listen...”

She finally looked at him, and he flinched, expecting an angry rebuke. Instead she gave him a deceptively sweet smile that only served to draw attention to the stony look in her eye. “I hope the two of you’ll be happy together, Fry,” she said. “If you need anything, I’ll be in the ship.”

_____________________________ _____________________________ _______

Munda reached out and took Leela’s hand gently. “I’m sorry, dear. That must have been difficult for you.”

Leela looked up. “Actually, it wasn’t especially difficult once the initial shock wore off. Fry clearly couldn’t have loved me if he was able to meet someone else that quickly, so there was no point in overreacting. I was even able to be perfectly polite to him afterwards, and to Colleen as well when Fry brought her to meet us. But, when they broke up, I said.....”

She broke off and studied her hands awkwardly before continuing.  “I said there were times when I thought he ought to go away.”

“Well, what’s done is done, but I have to say that was....unnecessary.”

“It’s something I’m certainly not proud of. I think it was the final straw that made him go into the rift, as a matter of fact. But I’d just had to go through falling in love with Lars, breaking up with him, finding out he was Fry’s double, and then spend a whole month having to watch Fry being first lovestruck and then depressed, and for a moment it all proved too much.” She gave a wry smile. “I think that’s enough for anyone to deal with.”

Munda chuckled. “You could be right. So did you manage to patch things up with Fry?”
“I did. Eventually. Once that wretched Yivo business was over....”

_____________________________ _____________________________ _______

Leela stomped down the corridor of the Planet Express ship towards her cabin, fuming to herself, and rubbing her neck where Bender had nearly strangled her just moments ago. It came as an immense relief when she could finally close the door behind her and flop gracelessly onto her bed.

The peace proved short lived though. Only a few minutes later, there was a knock on the door.

“Who is it?” she shouted angrily, despite not really caring who it might be.

“A very sexy ship’s captain!” came the muffled answer.

Leela swore silently and rolled off the bed. “Can you find the nearest airlock by yourself, Zapp, or do you need my boot to help you along?” She slammed the door open to reveal the unwelcome visitor, and swore again. The visitor wasn’t Zapp, but in her current mood, it was only a marginal improvement. “If you think I’m in any sort of mood for jokes, Fry, you’re badly mistaken.”

She stalked back into the cabin, realising that she wasn’t going to get any respite. “So what do you want?” she demanded.

Fry looked sheepish. “I’ve been thinking...”

“Wonders will never cease,” she remarked derisively.

“....about what you said,” he continued, ignoring her remark. “I realised that you were right. I didn’t take long to get over you with Colleen. We’re friends, Leela. Or at least we were. Why can’t we be friends again?”

Her eye narrowed. “Fry, if this is your latest attempt to ask me out again, just go now. After all, why would I want to compete with the girl you love?”

Fry’s own face tightened. “How long are you going to hold that against me? You weren’t exactly shy about letting me know you loved Lars....”

He broke off and turned away. “This is going nowhere,” he said over his shoulder. “I came to say I was sorry, but perhaps it was a bad idea. If you can’t forgive me, then I guess I should go.”

For a moment, Leela was tempted to let Fry leave and let things take their course, but then she relented. “Fry!” she called as he was about to close the door behind him. “You don’t have to go.”

Fry hesitated a moment, but then appeared to acknowledge her tacit acceptance of his apology as he turned and re-entered the cabin, closing the door behind him. “Maybe we should start again?”

Leela nodded. “That might be a good idea. Perhaps I should start this time.”

She took a deep breath, held it, and let it out again before speaking. “I guess neither of us has done ourselves much credit lately,” she remarked ruefully. “I think we both have things we need to make up for. I’m sorry for saying I wished you went away sometimes, for one thing. That’s not something a friend should ever say.”

Fry dropped his gaze to stare at his feet, and then looked back up at her. “And I’m sorry if I hurt you with Colleen too. I never meant to do that.”

“I know,” she said quietly. “We’ve both hurt each other. That seems to make us even, doesn’t it.” She held out a hand. “Forgiven?”

This time, Fry met her eye squarely without looking away. “I wouldn’t be much of a friend if I said no.” He took her hand and shook it. “Forgiven.”

As his hand closed around hers, all the resentment of the past month seemed to melt away, and suddenly a simple handshake seemed inadequate. Fry had just time for a startled exclamation before she put her free hand on his shoulder and pulled him close for a hug. She couldn’t see his face as she rested her chin on his shoulder, but somehow she knew he was smiling. “What was that for?” he asked.

“Call it friends forgiving each other,” she said. “Of course, if you tell anyone about this....”
She let him go and stepped back a pace. He was still smiling, and she realised that it was the first time she had seen a genuine smile from him for a while. “Well, what else is a friend but someone who forgives you when you do something stupid?” he asked.

“In that case, I’m the best friend you’ll ever have,” Leela shot back, and returned his smile. It felt good to laugh again, she reflected. There had been little enough to laugh about lately. “Hey, I just remembered. All Hail the Hypnotoad is about to start, and we’re just about in range of the Earth TV transmission zone. Feel like watching it with me?”

Fry rubbed his forehead. “Enough things have happened in the last couple of days that I want to forget all about. It’s a deal!”

_____________________________ _____________________________ _______

Leela came to a halt, and there was a pause while Munda considered. “Well, it’s good that the two of you made up. But if you did, then what’s the problem?”

“Mom, isn’t it obvious?” Leela said impatiently. “Everything’s fine between me and Fry right now, but sooner or later, he’s going to ask me out again. I doubt that he’ll ever give up for good. And as I never want to go through a repeat of the last few weeks, I could do with some advice....”

“Turanga Leela!”

The sharpness in her mother’s voice brought Leela to a startled halt. “What?”

Munda took a deep breath. “You’re my daughter, and I love you more than you can imagine, so it’s past time that someone said this to you. You can’t – or won’t – see what’s obvious to everyone else. Fry loves you.”

“Oh Mom, I know that all too well! He’s said it to me more than once.”

“And you love him too,” her mother said bluntly.

Leela, for once, found herself lost for words. “I don’t!” she finally managed to blurt out.

Her mother merely snorted. “That didn’t even sound convincing. If there’s one thing that’s clear as day from what you just told me, it’s that you love him. For heaven’s sake, you were jealous of that girl Colleen!”

She waved Leela’s hasty protestations aside. “That day in the lounge, you were obviously ready to agree to go out with him, but your caution got the better of you. Then when he met Colleen, you spent a month being standoffish to Fry because of it. And I know you well enough to tell that you didn’t come down here for my advice. If you were really so sure that you felt nothing for Fry, you’d tell him so outright, instead of asking me what you should do.”

And with that, Leela’s temper broke. “Why are you so interested in trying to push me and Fry together anyway?” she demanded angrily, coming to her feet in a rush. “Are you embarrassed by having a daughter who’s not in a relationship? You seem more concerned about Fry’s feelings than you are about mine.”

She glared down at her mother, but Munda was undaunted. “Don’t play the fool with me, Leela!” she snapped back. “You know you’re more important to me than anything.  Now sit down!”

Leela seethed, but nevertheless complied.
“That’s better,” Munda said. “I’ll never put anyone’s concerns ahead of your own. Fry thinks the world of you, and I’ve already explained how you care about him, perhaps more than you realise yourself. I know you’re lonely too, and I don’t want you to spend your life like that when there’s a chance for happiness right in front of you, but you’re throwing that chance away because you’re afraid to let your guard down. Isn’t it past time you let someone in, dear?”

“You think it should be someone like Fry?” Leela shot back. “Mom, he’s sweet enough, but he’s also the world’s worst slob! And if I had a penny for every time I’ve seen him do something stupid, I’d be able to buy up MomCorp!”

“Oh, give me strength! Fry may not be perfect, but compared to any of your previous boyfriends, he’s head and shoulders above them. Say what you will about him, but he’s kind and honest at least. I don’t think any of the others had that much going for them. And in any case, you should love someone for who they are, instead of what you want them to be.”

Leela turned away sharply. “Maybe you’re right,” she allowed grudgingly. “But even if I did love Fry, what of it? You think it could ever be enough? You know what he’s like, and what I’m like. Do you think we’d ever work together?”

Munda waved a tentacle irritably. “There’s only one way you’re going to know that. And I’m not such a fool as to imagine it’s going to be easy, even if it does work. I can guarantee that you and Fry will want to kill each other on a regular basis. Do you think your father and me always see eye to eye, or that each of us doesn’t have habits that drive the other mad? We fight like any other couple does. And look at us! Compared to a lot of the other mutants down here, we’re not that far from normal humans. Do you imagine that some of them don’t resent us because of it, and haven’t even gone as far as trying to drive us out?”

She broke off suddenly. “But never mind that. I’ll just say that it’s better to try and perhaps fail than never try at all.”

Leela seemed to shrink suddenly as all the fight drained out of her. She stared at her hands for a long time, lost in thought. “So what do I do now, mom?” she said at last.

Her mother laughed. “Oh, that’s the easiest part! You just have to say that you’d like to go out with him, and everything will follow on from that.”

She waved at the door. “Now go on. I’ve said enough, I think, and your father should be back any minute.”

Leela nodded. “We’ve got to finish converting the Planet Express ship to run on whale oil anyway. I need to go and make sure that it’s been done properly. I don’t want the ship blowing up or crashing the next time I have to take it out on a delivery run,” she said as she stood up.

She was in the doorway before her mother spoke again. “Leela?”


“In the end, it’s your life to live, and your choices to make. You have to make your own decision about Fry. Just don’t spend your life fooling yourself and live to regret things you never did.”

_____________________________ _____________________________ _______

She stood just outside the Planet Express lounge, staring at the doorway set into the wall opposite her while she tried to summon up the courage to step inside. She had come straight from the hangar after finishing the modifications allowing the ship to run on whale oil, but her nerve had unexpectedly failed just as she reached the doorway. Everything had seemed so straightforward up to that point, but having reached the point where she actually would have to face Fry, she had frozen up.

The TV in the lounge was on, and she could hear enough of what was being said that she began trying to identify it. None of the voices that she could hear sounded like Calculon’s, and she couldn’t hear the distinctive hum that meant the Hypnotoad was on.
At that moment, part of her mind decided it would be better to try again another time, and she actually took several steps back from the door before the rest of her mind checked her. The lack of resolve she was showing after having faced many far worse situations suddenly infuriated her, and she plunged through the door.

Bender and Fry both glanced up as she entered. They had settled in to watch an episode of the Essence of Elzar cooking show, with a couple of six packs of beer sitting on the table in front of them.

“Hey, Leela!” Bender greeted her. “Wanna grab a beer and watch Elzar with us?”

“Nice idea, Bender,” she said. “Any other time, I’d love to take you up on it, but right now I have something else planned.” She picked up the remote control, which was sitting on the arm of the couch beside Bender, and turned the TV off.

“Hey!” Bender protested indignantly. “I was watching that! Oh man, is there anything else you can do to spoil my fun?”

“Actually, there is,” she replied. “Sorry, Bender, I hate to do this, but right now, I want Fry’s full attention.” Before he could react, she leaned forwards and turned him off. “Of course, I should have told him to move over first,” she muttered.

Fry eyed her nervously as she gritted her teeth and used every sinew to heave Bender off the couch. She was in excellent physical shape, but 525 pounds of deadweight metal was a challenge for anyone to move. “Er....Leela....is this about me not helping you with converting the ship to work on whale oil?” he asked tentatively. “Because if it is....”

Leela raised her forefinger and he stopped dead. “That’s something I’ll be getting round to in due course,” she said through clenched teeth. She gave one last mighty yank, and when Bender failed to move more than a couple of centimetres forward, she gave up in disgust. “But right now, I have other things to talk to you about.”

She squeezed awkwardly into the narrow space on the sofa that was left between Fry and Bender and grabbed a bottle of beer, which she pulled open with her teeth.

Fry began backing up surreptitiously on the sofa as she reached for another bottle of beer. “Uh, Leela, are you sure you’re OK?” he asked, gauging the distance to the door in case he had to escape.

“Oh, I’m fine,” she assured him. “But right now, I need a beer before I get started.” She pushed the second bottle of beer into his hands, and downed half of her own bottle in one. “And you might need one for the same reason,” she said, nodding at the bottle he was holding as though it might burn him.

Fry obediently took a sip, deciding that it was safer not to risk annoying her. “So what did you want to talk about?” he asked, wondering if anyone would reach him in time if he screamed for help.

Leela downed the remaining half of her beer, and reached for a second one. “Did you really love Colleen?” she asked without any preamble.

“Of course not!” Fry said immediately with a sickly grin, hoping that she believed him.

Leela paused to pull the second bottle open with her teeth again. “Fry, I’m not angry with you, but I will be if you don’t tell me the truth. So do you want to try again?”

Fry stared at her, apparently trying to determine if she meant it, and seemed to reach a decision. He took a large gulp from the bottle before answering.

“I thought I loved Colleen,” he said finally, visibly gathering his thoughts as he spoke. “I gradually fell in love with you after we met, but I only realised how I felt when I was infected by those parasites. After that, I always hoped you’d say that you loved me back, but you never did. Then when Lars turned out to be a double of me, I thought it had to happen at last. And that day in the lounge, it seemed so close, but instead you turned me down again.”

He looked up at Leela, whose face was set in an impassive mask. “Do you want me to stop?”

Instead she shook her head immediately. “No. I asked you to tell me this, didn’t I? Go on.”

Fry nodded, studying his bottle of beer reflectively before continuing. “So then I met Colleen. I thought that you were never going to love me, and it wasn’t an easy thing for me to deal with. So I started dating her, and she was fun enough that she kept my mind off you for most of the time. And because of it, I almost convinced myself that I loved her. I even said it in front of you and the others that day when I wasn’t sure whether to move in with her or not. And when I broke up with her, I did pretty much the same thing again with Yivo.”

He set his beer down on the table. “Anyway, that’s pretty much it,” he said, gazing down at the floor. “But through it all, some part of me never stopped caring about you. I know how corny this is going to sound, but you’re not an easy person to forget about. I’ve said before that I love you, and if there’s only one thing I’ve ever said that’s true, it’s that. If you hate me over the way I acted with Colleen or even Yivo, I don’t blame you. But it’ll never change the way I feel about you.”

He met her gaze cautiously, clearly expecting a scornful reply. And the look on his face was suddenly too much for her, if not exactly in the way he had been expecting. She burst out laughing.

“Philip J Fry, you goofbag!” she managed to say at last. “How could I ever hate you? You’re my best friend!”

Fry hesitated, wavering between whether to doubt or believe her. “You mean it?” he asked. “Even after what I just told you?”

Leela met his gaze squarely. “Fry, you’ll always be my friend. Nothing’s ever going to change that. You should know me well enough by now to know that.”

Fry smiled tentatively. “I guess so. But nothing I can do is ever going to make you agree to go out with me, is it?”

Leela shook her head. “Not a chance in hell,” she said emphatically.

He nodded, clearly sadly, but not remotely surprised. “Well, being friends is better than nothing, I guess.” He looked back at the TV. “Elzar’s cooking show might still be on, though. We could catch the end of it, if you want to help me finish those beers.”

“Fry,” she said, and something in her tone made him look at her. “Do you know why I said I’d never go out with you? You’ve spent all these years trying to ask me out, and I’ve always turned you down. And I’m not suddenly going to change my mind and agree now. We’ve been here so many times before that I think it’s too late to do anything else at this point.”

Fry looked as if he was about to speak for a moment, and she knew it would be something along the lines of how it was never too late to change things.

“I know,” he said in the end, reaching for his beer. “Can we leave it at that?”

“Not yet,” she replied calmly. “So I’m asking you out instead.”

Fry nodded. “You got it,” he said, raising the bottle to his lips. Can you pass the remote control, it’s next to.....”

He stopped talking as his brain caught up with his ears, and Leela silently awarded him points for not reacting to her last comment by spitting his beer across the room.

“Can you repeat that?” he asked without looking at her.

She duly obliged, and he nodded again. “Yes, I thought that’s what you said.” He gave her a searching look. “So who talked you into this? If it was Bender’s idea, I’m going to kick his metal ass into orbit.”

“Fry...” she said patiently. “It’s not a joke. Look....”

She reached into a pocket in her leggings and brought out a small card, which she handed to him. “I’ve made a reservation for two at Elzar’s,” she explained.

Fry just laughed, without even bothering to look at the card. “Nice try, Leela, but I know how much it costs to book a table there. The Professor doesn’t pay us enough that we can even dream about going there.”

“So he can’t begrudge us some bonuses every now and then, can he?” she replied.

“Even if it’s because Bender stole his credit card details. I never realised just what that robot will do for a free sixpack of Lobrau.”

Fry frowned. “Maybe I’m crazy, but you certainly sound convincing. Tell me why you’ve suddenly changed your mind now? You left me in no doubt where I stood, the last time we were in this situation.”

Leela shrugged. “I didn’t tell you the truth, because I was afraid to give you a chance. I suppose that was a mistake, given that we’ve both spent the last month regretting it, but it’s done now. Anyway, I guess you could say I’ve been doing some soul-searching. I saw my mom this morning, and she gave me quite a few things to think about. And if you guessed that they were about you and me, you wouldn’t be wrong. So, I spent a lot of time rethinking things this afternoon while I was working on the ship.”

“Such as?”

“Too many to go into individually, but they all boil down to one thing: deciding not to play it safe all the time. And what better way to start than by going out with you, and even making the first move?”

Fry stared at her for a long time without speaking. Finally he shook his head. “You certainly kept me hanging on long enough, Leela. Just do one thing. Tell me this isn’t a dream.”

Leela silently reached out and pinched him. “You’re not dreaming. And in all the time you’ve known me, have you ever known me not to be honest with you?

“No, I suppose not,” Fry allowed. “Do you mean it? You’re actually asking me out on a date?”

Leela nodded. “Well, why not? It is the 30th century.”
A grin spread slowly across Fry’s face. “I like it.” He looked at the booking confirmation he was still holding. “When’s the table booked for?” he asked eagerly. “Tonight?”

“No, Fry,” she said. “Tonight, you’re going to be cleaning off the dark matter that’s gotten baked onto the ship’s afterburner. Dark matter and whale oil tend to have...explosive...results if they come into contact with each other.”

She raised her eyebrow. “You don’t think I was just going to forget about the work you still have to do, do you? But if it makes you feel better, Bender will be helping you clean the afterburner too. He’s not going to be getting out of pulling his weight either.”

She looked at Fry, expecting him to protest, but his mind seemed to be elsewhere, as he only nodded vaguely while studying the booking card intently.

“In any case, I spoke to Amy and the Professor earlier,” she continued. “Amy said that her parents are inviting us for a visit tomorrow so they can show us Mars Vegas being demolished. The Professor wasn’t going to agree at first, but then Amy mentioned how much money he was being offered to act as an independent scientific advisor by Leo Wong. I don’t know how long we’ll be there, so I need to sort everything out tonight before we go. And the long and the short of all that is that Elzar’s will have to wait till we get back.”

She smiled at him suddenly. “Consider it something to anticipate.”

And with that, she was gone, leaving Fry alone in the lounge.

Or almost alone. Whistling to himself, he absently reached over and switched Bender back on.

Bender jerked upright as he came back online and quickly took stock of his surroundings, which mainly involved checking to see how much beer was left and whether the TV was still off.

“Oh man!” he complained. “Can’t a robot watch TV in peace without that stupid skin tube sticking her nose in? That was a good show of Elzar’s too!”

To cheer himself up, he grabbed a beer from the table, opened it, and downed it. Fry, having seen this routine many times before, ducked reflexively a half-second before Bender belched flames through the spot where his head had just been.

“Well, old buddy, you know what?” he asked rhetorically as he stood up. “I’m going to make Leela wish she’d bitten my shiny metal ass! Let’s break into her locker and dump whatever’s in there in the sewers. That’ll teach her not to interrupt us while Elzar’s on TV! Are you with me? Fry? Fry...?”

He stopped as he realised that he was talking to himself. Fry was sitting on the couch, gazing dreamily into the distance, and humming away to himself placidly.

“Hey Fry!” he said loudly.

Fry blinked, snapping out of his reverie. “What?”

“I’m Bender, baby! People listen to me when I talk to them! And what are you humming?”

“Oh, you know it,” Fry replied. “Remember that song I told you that Seymour and I used to sing when we were happy? It’s Walking on Sunshine!”

“Yeah, whatever,” Bender said impatiently. “Are you gonna help me with Leela’s locker or not? Come on, it’ll be fun!”

Fry thought about it briefly before shaking his head. “No, I’ll give it a miss. Really, what harm did Leela do? You only missed a TV show; you’ll get to see it again some time.”

The impatient look on Bender’s face faded slowly into an expression of pure horror. “You’re calling Essence of Elzar just a TV show?!” he demanded, advancing on Fry and rolling up his sleeves menacingly. “I’m going to bend you up so badly for that....”

He stopped suddenly and the angry look changed to a knowing grin. “Oh man, you really had me going there for a minute; you sounded like you actually meant it! I gotta tell the others about this, they’re not going to believe it!”

Fry shook his head. “Bender, it’s not a joke. It’s really not the end of the world if you missed Elzar’s show. And I know I’ve done it often enough in the past, but doing stuff like breaking into Leela’s locker to get your own back is actually pretty childish.”

He jumped to his feet suddenly. “Hey, tell you what! We’ll go work on the ship together. Leela wanted us to clean the dark matter off the afterburner tonight.”

In the heavy silence that followed, the only sound was that of roughly 2 dozen bricks falling out of Bender’s ass.

“Oh, come on Bender, it’s not that bad,” Fry said. “Hey, you know what?” he added coaxingly. “We can finish those beers while we do the work on the ship!”

“Oh yeah, that makes me feel so much better!” Bender exclaimed. He closed his eye visor in despair. “First Leela makes me miss my show, and then my best friend starts telling me it’s not too bad if I missed it, and that we have to do some work!”

He slumped onto the sofa dejectedly. “I think I’ll just go out and find a suicide booth. Life suddenly got too much for this bending unit!”

Fry just grinned, unmoved by Bender’s statement. “You won’t do it.”

“Says who?” Bender demanded, folding his arms defiantly.

“Me. Bending units are two a penny to buy, and we have an up to date computer backup of your personality and memories. Hermes insisted we had to do it, for him to meet Central Bureaucracy’s targets. Even you wouldn’t be able to tell the difference!”

“Well, I’m still depressed!” Bender said sulkily.

Fry groaned. “Are you really going to make me do all the work?”

“Are you really trying to appeal to my better nature?”

“I suppose not,” Fry said resignedly. “Fine, I’ll be down in the hangar.”

“Yeah, whatever,” Bender said dismissively. “I’ll be up here feeling sorry for myself.”

He sat quietly on the sofa with his head hanging forlornly as Fry left. After a minute, he got stealthily to his feet and tiptoed to the door to check that Fry had gone. Having satisfied himself that no one was nearby, he returned to the sofa and sat down, suddenly seeming much more cheerful if the way he picked up a beer and produced a cigar from his chest compartment was anything to go by.

“Me, suicidal?” he asked the empty room incredulously, and sniggered. “Man, those two meatbags can be real suckers sometimes. Oh, I missed Elzar’s show, I’m so depressed! Haven’t they ever heard of recording TV programmes? I’m Bender, baby!”

_____________________________ _____________________________ _______


Bending Unit
« Reply #1 on: 07-26-2009 23:35 »

Omg that's such a good fic!!!

I cant really be a judge but for me that was great!!!

It was fun to read and it was a real rollercoaster of emotions, i loved it when Fry got angry!!!

Great fic, keep it up :D

Bending Unit
« Reply #2 on: 07-27-2009 18:46 »

Thanks! :)

Bending Unit
« Reply #3 on: 07-28-2009 18:34 »

No one else has any comments?
Curious Gorge

Bending Unit
« Reply #4 on: 07-28-2009 21:54 »

I gave it a quick read and thought it was a good read. I'd say you got the characters spot on and it did a fine job of filling in the gaps between the movies.

You could do with adding actual gaps between paragraphs though as it would make it much easier to read.

Urban Legend
« Reply #5 on: 07-28-2009 23:24 »

Hey, way to go, Wonderpants!  Not only did you do a great job of filling in the gaps and explaining that whole debacle with Colleen, you also kept everyone perfectly in character while you did it.  You have some real talent for dialogue and have a good grasp on the characters' emotions and personalities.  Hopefully you've got plans to do some more writing?

(and don't get the wrong impression from the lack of responses.  People don't post in the fanfic threads much anymore.  That doesn't mean nobody's reading though.)
Chug a Bug

Bending Unit
« Reply #6 on: 07-29-2009 23:07 »

I thought it was a good idea for a fic, WP. The unexplained changes in their relationship between the movies is not something thats been covered before IIRC. (I don't think it can be explained to be honest.)

I enjoyed it. It felt like it was an attempt to explain your view by dramatising it. Whereas I don't necessarily agree with all the points of the analysis of their relationship (yeah, opinions are like arseholes, everybodys got one) I thought you did a decent job of dramatising it. And you didn't fall into the trap that bad writers fall into by simply venting spleen at Leela.

The scene between mother and daughter was particularly good and raised the very good point of at what point do you compromise your standards in your search for a partner? Do you settle for your ideal, or merely the best thats available?

Now thats a debate I'd like to see.

P.S. She admires Arnold Judas Rimmer? Please tell me that was a joke.

Bending Unit
« Reply #7 on: 07-30-2009 19:34 »

“The Nimbus is falling behind!” Kif announced triumphantly, having commandeered the console where Fry normally sat. “They won’t be able to catch us before we reach the wormhole. Oh Amy dearest, I might never have to see Zapp Brannigan again!”

Behind him, Hermes and LaBarbara stared at the ever increasing shape of the wormhole. “How long before we reach it?” Hermes asked.

Kif made a quick check of the controls. “Roughly 3 minutes and counting.”

“Then we’d better say goodbye to Dwight,” LaBarbara exclaimed. “Oh Hermes, how could we leave the boy behind? He won’t have his father there to teach him how to limbo!”

“Oh, he’ll be alright!” the Professor said cheerfully. “Cubert will make sure he doesn’t get into any trouble.”

“But Cubert’s just a young boy!” LaBarbara objected. “He can’t manage on his own!”

“Actually, the Professor might be right,” Leela added, briefly switching her attention away from the ship’s controls. “Cubert’s more mature than most adults. But you’d better be quick if you want to speak to Dwight. Use the viewscreen in the lounge. And Professor, you’d better go with them too if you want to say goodbye to Cubert.”

“Enough with the bossiness, woman!” Hermes protested.  “We’re going, we’re going. Come on, Professor!”

“What about you, Leela?” Amy asked as the bridge door slid shut behind Hermes, LaBarbara and the Professor.

Leela glanced over at her. “What about me?” she asked quizzically.

“Well, don’t you want to say goodbye to your parents too?”

Leela blinked. “Oh Lord, I forgot all about them!” she exclaimed. “I can’t do anything now though, there’ll be no one to fly the ship!”

“Of course there will!” Amy said. “Kif’s a full DOOP pilot. Isn’t that right, Kiffy?” she asked, squeezing his hand reassuringly.

“Er, yes...” Kif said tremulously. “Of course, I’m only an XO, Zapp made all the actual decisions...”

“That’s good enough for me,” Leela said, unstrapping herself from the captain’s seat. “Zapp wouldn’t have lasted 5 minutes without someone around to give the actual orders. Come on, Fry!” she said, grabbing him by the hand as Kif hurried over to take her place.

“Are you sure?” Fry asked hesitantly. “Don’t you want to talk to them on your own, without feeling awkward if I’m there?”

Leela stopped. “Fry, I’ve never been more sure,” she said, looking him in the eyes. “I’ll always want you to be there with me. Now, are you going to keep on wasting time arguing?”

Fry smiled. “No, captain!” he said, throwing a salute, and followed her out of the bridge towards her cabin.

“I can use the viewscreen in my cabin,” Leela called back to him as she ran down the corridor. “It’s not as large as the one in the lounge, but it’ll do.”

She vanished into her cabin, and by the time Fry caught up with her, she was already opening a communication channel on the screen. It only took a few seconds before Munda’s face appeared on screen.

“Are you all right, dear?” she exclaimed as soon as she saw Leela. “With Zapp Brannigan after you...”

“There’s nothing to worry about, Mom. The only thing Zapp could catch is a sexually transmitted disease. But we’re about to go into a wormhole, and I just wanted to say goodbye in case I don’t get another chance to talk to you. I love you and Dad, and thank you for what you told me.”

“Leela, you’ll never need to thank me. You’re my daughter and...”
She suddenly stopped dead and studied Leela intently. “Is Fry there?” she said, just as Leela was beginning to feel awkward under the scrutiny.

Leela gave Fry an inquiring glance, confused by the change of subject, but he merely shrugged back by way of reply. “I’m right here,” he said.

Munda smiled. “Thank you, Fry.”

“What for?” he asked.

“For making my daughter happy. And Leela, I’m glad you’ve finally told him you love him, dear. Lord knows you took long enough about it.”

“Mom!” Leela exclaimed. “I only just told Fry. How do you know?”

“Oh do give me credit, Leela! I’m not blind. It’s written all over your face. I’ve never seen you look so happy.”

She paused to wipe away a small tear. “Just one more thing. Do you know the answer now to the question I asked you once? The one about what a girl’s best friend is?”

Leela nodded. “Yes, mom.”

Munda smiled. “Then that’s all I needed to hear,” she said softly, just before the screen went black.

_____________________________ _____________________________ _______

Back on the viewing platform, chaos reigned. The rapid sequence of events involving the Feminista interruption of the dwarf star’s demolition, the appearance of the Encyclopod, and the dramatic chase of the escaping Planet Express ship by the Nimbus had left the crowd convinced that it had to have all been planned in advance. As a result, no one in the crowd was in any hurry to leave, and indeed most of them were now surrounding Leo and Inez Wong, demanding to know what was due to happen next, and refusing to believe their angry protestations that none of what had just happened had been planned.

Only in the now deserted rows of seating at the back of the viewing platform, where two lone guests were still sitting, was there any lack of activity. Munda watched the screen on her mobile communicator go dark, and then lifted her gaze to where the massive bulk of the Nimbus was silhouetted by the wormhole. A little way beyond the Nimbus, a tiny flare of light that marked the ion discharge from the Planet Express ship’s afterburner could just be seen.

Beside her, Turanga Morris shifted slightly. “Are you alright, dear?” he asked solicitously, having sat quietly while she spoke to Leela.

Munda didn’t speak, but he got his answer as she slipped her hand into his, keeping her eye fixed on the glimmer of light as it receded into the glow of the wormhole and the Nimbus, having failed to catch it, began to slowly turn away. An instant later, she sighed softly as the wormhole suddenly seemed to briefly fold in on itself before expanding back to its previous size in a flare of light and colour, and leaned against him.

Morris squeezed her hand reassuringly. “She hasn’t gone forever,” he said gently. “I think we’ll see her again. And who knows: the next time we see her, we might be grandparents too.”

Below them, the crowd had fallen silent, something that came as a great relief to Leo and Inez, and were now clustered around the glass at the edge of the viewing platform. Morris watched them for a few seconds before turning his attention back to Munda.

“So what was that business with the question about ‘a girl’s best friend’?” he asked her curiously.

“Oh, just a simple riddle I asked her once. At the time, she couldn’t guess the answer, but I think she knows it now. “

Morris considered briefly before answering. “I can think of a couple of possibilities, but somehow I doubt they’re what you had in mind. So what is the answer?”

Munda smiled, her eye still fixed firmly on the wormhole. “Her mother, of course.”

Bending Unit
« Reply #8 on: 07-30-2009 19:41 »

I've reformatted it, so it should be easier to read now (I had to split it into two parts though, as it won't all fit in one post)


Bending Unit
« Reply #9 on: 07-30-2009 19:52 »

I enjoyed it. It felt like it was an attempt to explain your view by dramatising it. Whereas I don't necessarily agree with all the points of the analysis of their relationship (yeah, opinions are like arseholes, everybodys got one) I thought you did a decent job of dramatising it. And you didn't fall into the trap that bad writers fall into by simply venting spleen at Leela.

The scene between mother and daughter was particularly good and raised the very good point of at what point do you compromise your standards in your search for a partner? Do you settle for your ideal, or merely the best thats available?

Now thats a debate I'd like to see.

P.S. She admires Arnold Judas Rimmer? Please tell me that was a joke.

I think you're right, it can't really be explained logically. Still, it makes a bit more sense now to me at least, and hopefully it does add some substance to ItWGY, which really only had one or two scenes where Fry and Leela interact at all.

Yeah, I've seen a few of those fics where everyone, even Leela herself, hates her for her behaviour towards Fry, without really going into why she acts like that, and it just takes you of the story.

As for the question about holding out for Mr Right, or taking the best available option, that's something we can discuss until the cows come home. But in relation to Leela, my take on it is that she is far from sure whether Fry is mature enough for her to live with, but she's ready to give it a shot rather than play safe.
Chug a Bug

Bending Unit
« Reply #10 on: 07-30-2009 22:47 »
« Last Edit on: 07-30-2009 23:12 »

Yeah, I've seen a few of those fics where everyone, even Leela herself, hates her for her behaviour towards Fry, without really going into why she acts like that, and it just takes you of the story.

What really bugs me about those stories is that somehow she's supposed to go out with him, just because he wants it, and she's just plain evil  because she won't. He's often made to be some kind of victim.

It's the sheer self-righteousness of it that bugs me. Thats just lazy, and I'm sure every stalker who's ever lived has felt the same way.

No one else has any comments?

People are reluctant to comment because someones ego is involved, and they're fragile. It's easier to stay silent than to unintentionally offend someone when they don't like whats been said. Constructive criticism is hard.

If you're looking for more reactions you might want to try one of the the other Futurama message boards, the FMMB for one has a lively, if uncritical, fanfiction section. Or Fanfiction.net.
boo rad

Bending Unit
« Reply #11 on: 08-01-2009 06:21 »

Yeah, I've seen a few of those fics where everyone, even Leela herself, hates her for her behaviour towards Fry, without really going into why she acts like that, and it just takes you of the story.

What really bugs me about those stories is that somehow she's supposed to go out with him, just because he wants it, and she's just plain evil  because she won't. He's often made to be some kind of victim.

It's the sheer self-righteousness of it that bugs me. Thats just lazy, and I'm sure every stalker who's ever lived has felt the same way.

I disagree.  Fry is not a character that is operating alone in his own unique universe that is occasionally occupied by Leela.  He is an interactive relationship with her. You would have a stronger point, Chug, if Leela was constant in her attitude toward Fry (with one foot on shore, the other in sea, to one thing constant never in this reversal of shakespeare's poem of sexes).  It has been part of Leela from episode one that there is a connection between her and Fry.  A constant theme of the writers who created her is going back and forth regarding her friend but keeps getter closer and closer to becoming part of a couple.  Wonderpants accurately describes Leela's attitude through her mother that she doesn't know what she wants and goes on to explaing--what could be true although it is just one possibility--that she is aftraid of recognizing her love for Fry and rejects it when it becomes self-evident.  That is a guess but it's not a wild one.  It has more basis from what we know of the character that what she really wants is to be left alone.  I am a feminist and I agree with you if that is what Leela wants then she should jolly well have it and Fry is a creep for pushing himself onto her.  But I don't believe from the storyline, that is what is happening here.  You have the right to create your own character where such is the case and it could well be an excellent and certainly interesting story but it looks like you may be interposing your thinking and values on Leela in your post.    I do believe you make an excellent point that a good futurama story should be submitted to the variious sites for a wider distribution.  There will be some that will say it's too shippy, about the same number who think it's not shippy enough, some will wish there was explicit or at least suggested sex in it but I believe most will enjoy it; I do.

Bending Unit
« Reply #12 on: 08-11-2009 18:13 »

Here's the first part/prologue to a new fic:

“Your attention please: The 12.36 interplanetary shuttle from Mars Colony 1 is now arriving at docking platform 3.”

As the announcement concluded, one of the ticket inspectors in the main arrival hall of the South Street spaceport, whose nametag identified her as Annie, squinted through the glare at the silhouette of the passenger ship that was docking at one of the gates. The sun was at its zenith, flooding the hall with light and making it hard to see much.

“Here they come,” she remarked to her nearest colleague, who merely nodded as she waited for the influx of tourists and residents returning from their holidays.

A few moments later, the first people began filtering into the hall, and she began working through the queue that quickly formed in front of her desk. Having done it for so long, it was now a simple routine for her to check that their documentation was valid and correct, confirm their identity with an eye scan, and wave them through before repeating the process with the next person in line.

Finally, she reached the last person in line, who was almost the last person in the hall still waiting to be cleared.

“Sorry for the wait, sir,” she said automatically, peering up at his backlit form and wishing the sun would go in so she didn’t have to squint at everything. “This will only take a moment, if you could just look into the ocular scanner.”

“Of course,” he replied and obediently leaned forward to look into the scanner. A moment later, the scanner beeped to acknowledge that his eye patterns had been read successfully.

“I’ll just need your travel documents now, sir,” she said, holding a hand out expectantly.

He duly passed them to her and she flipped through them quickly.

“Martian resident for 6 years.....single, no dependents....human male, type C blood....born in the Saturn colonies.....returning to Earth for at least one year’s stay....”

She nodded and passed the documents back to him. “Everything seems to be in order, sir. Have a pleasant stay.”

“Oh, I’m sure I will,” he replied. “I have some people I want to....relive old times with.”

It sounded like an innocent enough remark, but there was something in his voice that made her uneasy.

And at that moment, the sun finally vanished behind a cloud. Both of them blinked as they adjusted to the sudden change, and she saw the man’s face harden momentarily in anger as he saw her clearly for the first time.

“Is something wrong, sir?” she asked, taken aback by his expression.

He shook his head quickly, the angry look already gone from his face. “No, you just reminded me of someone I used to know for a moment.”

She hesitated for a moment, but decided that there was no reason to pursue the matter. “Of course,” she said, deciding that there was something not quite right about him. “You’re free to go.”

He smiled and walked through the barrier, heading towards the tube transport system.

Feeling vaguely relieved that he had gone, she slipped out of her booth and over to her colleague. “See that man?” she said, gesturing surreptitiously in his direction. “He was an odd one. He looked furious when he saw what I looked like, and said I reminded him of someone.”

“Well, you probably did, Annie,” came the reply. “I mean, look at your hair. You’re the only person I’ve ever seen who has that shade of blue hair, and yours even looks almost purple under certain lights. Not that his hair colour isn’t almost as unique. I’ve never seen anyone with bright orange hair before,” she commented, looking at the retreating form of the man. “What was his name?”

Annie thought for a few moments, trying to remember the name she had seen for a split second while thumbing through his documents.

“Fry!” she blurted out at last. “Philip J Fry!”

Space Pope
« Reply #13 on: 08-11-2009 18:41 »

Nice start, Wonderpants. I'm always intrigued by those fics that seem to jump ahead in time, to a point where Fry is kind of embittered, or has a long history with Leela, or something like that. I could be totally wrong in assuming that you plan to head in that direction, but regardless, this looks like it will be an interesting read. I like your style--very clear; concise but still suspenseful. I'm generally impressed by any fanfic writer who adheres to the basic rules of grammar; it's even better when he can write, y'know, well. Keep it up, man.

Oh, and I also gave your first fic a read about a week ago. I liked that you framed the story with Munda's advice to--and interactions with--Leela. Her parents were underused in the series, and so I like when they're given a more significant role in fanfic. You have a nice way of getting inside the character's heads, and your dialogue is pretty good, too (although I noticed Fry occassionally drifting into contemplation that, though true to his feelings, seemed surprisingly articulate and a little jarring). Funny, fast read, and I liked your interpretation of the events following BBS. 

Bending Unit
« Reply #14 on: 08-12-2009 21:27 »


I'm always intrigued by those fics that seem to jump ahead in time, to a point where Fry is kind of embittered, or has a long history with Leela, or something like that.

Hmm. Not sure whether it'll give things away a bit, but a 'x years ahead' start wasn't my intention.

I liked that you framed the story with Munda's advice to--and interactions with--Leela. Her parents were underused in the series, and so I like when they're given a more significant role in fanfic.

Well, she doesn't really have anyone else to turn to for a serious discussion, it seems to me. And yes, they only got used a couple of times following Leela's Homeworld.

I noticed Fry occassionally drifting into contemplation that, though true to his feelings, seemed surprisingly articulate and a little jarring). Funny, fast read, and I liked your interpretation of the events following BBS.[/small] 

Now you mention it....

I was trying to show that Fry had matured a bit following BBS, hence the greater articulation, but on second thoughts, I probably did take it a bit too far.

Urban Legend
« Reply #15 on: 08-12-2009 23:40 »

hmm.  I'm liking this new fic, wonderpants. 


Bending Unit
« Reply #16 on: 08-13-2009 19:00 »

Heh, looks like I've got people guessing. :D

It's not a parallel universe (though I actually started writing it as such, and realised it didn't work), but that will come into play down the line.

Bending Unit
« Reply #17 on: 08-16-2009 13:15 »
« Last Edit on: 08-16-2009 13:18 »


Philip J Fry!

The irate yell came from inside the Planet Express building, but Fry chose to ignore it for the moment as he settled into the inflatable pool that had been set up on the outside balcony.

Bender, who had already made himself at home in the pool, passed him a beer. “Here you go, old buddy. Sounds like Big Boots just found the Professor and Hermes.”

Fry sniggered. As a rule, the Professor did not allow anything he considered to be slacking off during work hours. To Bender in particular, who was fond of remarking that rules were made to be broken, this was like waving a red flag at a bull.

“Zoidberg isn’t going to be popular when they wake up!” he said, clinking bottles with Bender.

“Do I look like I care?” Bender asked. “We get to spend some time in the pool on a hot day, what the hell does Zoidberg matter?”

He leaned back against the side of the pool. “Man, I’ve got to get me a nice fembot. Being the only robot in a company full of meatbags is getting old.”

“I know what you mean,” Fry said, sipping his beer reflectively.

Bender gave him a derisive look. “Are you a robot?” he demanded.

“Er...no,” Fry admitted sheepishly. “I meant about getting a nice fembot....I mean woman....”

Bender stared at him, and finally shook his head. “Must be the heat,” he muttered to himself, looking up at the cloudless sky. It was mid afternoon by now, and even hotter than it had been at midday. He retracted his mouth grille and expelled a blast of super cold air in the direction of Fry, who yelped and jumped out of the pool as the temperature of the air around him, and especially the water he was sitting in, instantly fell to somewhere around zero. “Good job that I’m a model C bending unit, and have air conditioning as standard,” he remarked.

A goosepimpled Fry glared at him as he rubbed his arms and chest in an attempt to get some warmth back. “Are you trying to kill me?!” he asked crossly.

“Oh, quit your moaning!” Bender retorted. “It worked, didn’t it?”

Whatever Fry’s response to this might have been, it was doomed to remain unknown, as the door on to the balcony opened and Leela emerged, a dangerous look in her eye.

“Do you know what I’m expecting?” she asked silkily, and waited while they both shook their heads. “Shall I tell you?”

She took a deep breath. “I’m expecting an astoundingly good excuse as to why the Professor and Hermes have both fallen asleep halfway through one of their naked chess matches!

Fry flinched as she shouted the last sentence, but Bender was unmoved. “Easy, chess is boring,” he said dismissively.

“Oh, really?” Leela asked, speaking silkily again. “And I suppose Zoidberg finding a ham sandwich with a signed note pinned to it telling him to put sleeping pills in the Professor and Hermes’s drinks is just a coincidence?”

Bender adopted a hurt expression. “Of course it is! You don’t think I’d write something like that, do you? And even if I did write it, do you think I’d be stupid enough to actually sign it?”

“As it happens, I don’t,” Leela replied. “It was signed with the initials PJF, and the writing looks very familiar.”

She produced a piece of paper from her stretch pants, screwed it up, and threw it at Fry, who wasn’t quick enough to catch it before it fell in the pool. “Don’t you agree?”

Bender gave Fry a look of fake shock. “You drugged them?!” he exclaimed, standing up quickly as Fry picked the note out of the water.

Leela sighed. “Bender, I know perfectly well you put Fry up to this. He’d never plan this enough to make sure that the Professor and Hermes wouldn’t be able to complain about the two of you using the pool when you should be working.”

Bender grinned. “But you got no proof, baby.” He produced a cigar and lighter from his chest compartment, and lit the cigar. “You know, you look pretty tense. Perhaps it’d help you relax if you put some WD-40 on me. I could rust in this water!”

“And you could put some sun cream on me too,” Fry added eagerly, having recovered the note only to find that the water had turned it into an illegible mess. He experimentally dabbled his foot in the water, and after finding that it had warmed up again, climbed back in and sat back down.

“Shut up, Fry,” Leela said wearily. “And while we’re on the subject of water, why are you two sitting in the pool and drinking beer?”

“Why not?” Bender immediately asked.

“Come on, Leela,” Fry added. “It’s really hot and there’s nothing to do. There isn’t even anything on TV.”

“Yes, I had noticed, thanks,” Leela said sardonically. She turned away and leaned against the balcony railings. “I know how boring it is sitting around waiting for a delivery order, especially considering the pittance the Professor pays us, but you really should be professional about this. Have the two of you ever stopped to think that when you slack off, it just means I have more work to do?”

The reproachful tone of her voice made Fry shift uneasily, but Bender was unmoved. “No,” he said dismissively.

Leela only shook her head and stared out over the city, occasionally fanning herself with a copy of the New New York Times that she had brought with her. “I can’t be bothered to argue with you,” she said. “How long will those sleeping pills work for, Bender?”

“How do I know?” Bender protested indignantly. “You need to talk to Fry, he’s the one who....”

His voice trailed away as Leela turned around and gave him a look cold enough to freeze his hydraulics.

 “.....Four hours,” he said quickly.

Leela folded her arms and considered them both. “I really should haul you out of the pool and make you work overtime for pulling this stunt,” she said. “But frankly, it’s too hot for me to go to that much effort. And since you’ve gone to the trouble of making sure that the Professor and Hermes can’t spoil your little party, I might as well make the most of it.”

She casually pulled her tank top over her head and quickly slipped out of her boots and stretch pants.

“I’m sure you know better than to tell anyone about this,” she said. “And move over, Fry,” she added, prodding him with her foot as he gaped at her.

However, he barely seemed to notice, and it took a few more increasingly forceful nudges and finally his being dragged aside by Bender before she could actually climb into the pool.

She sighed contentedly as she savoured the coolness of the water. “I hate to say it, but this might actually have been a good idea of yours,” she remarked grudgingly.

“And it was mine!” Fry added quickly, spotting the opportunity. “If you want to thank me, you could reconsider rubbing some sun cream on me. People with my hair colour get sunburnt pretty easily.”

Leela opened her mouth to tell him what he could do with the sun cream, but something, possibly the remark about his hair, made her glance idly at the street across from the Planet Express building, which was just visible from where she was sitting. She went rigid for half a second, her retort instantly forgotten, before she leapt out of the pool and ran to the railing.

“I don’t believe it, I just saw someone with the same colour hair as you walk by, Fry!” she exclaimed.

“Ooh, how interesting!” Bender said sarcastically, but nevertheless got out of the pool for a look.

“No, really,” Leela insisted, looking around briefly. “Can you see him....hey, where’d he go?”

“Great, now you’re hallucinating,” Bender grumbled.

“I’m not!” Leela protested. “I know he was there.” She stared down into the street. “Fry, maybe you have other relatives alive besides the Professor? Fry?”

She looked around to see why he wasn’t answering her, followed his gaze, and sighed in resignation. “Fry, would you stop staring at my ass?”

It came as no great surprise to her when this failed to draw any response, and she took a last look up and down the street before turning away from the railing and walking over to Fry. His slack jawed expression didn’t change (if anything, it only intensified) but the fact that his eyes followed her proved that there was some sort of rudimentary thought going on in his brain.

“Would you like me to put that sun cream on you now?” she asked seductively.
For a moment, there was no answer, and she was just about to repeat the question when he blinked and his eyes lit up like a pinball machine.

“Sure!” he said hoarsely. He licked his lips before continuing, and this time his voice was steady. “You bet!”

“Don’t go anywhere then,” she said, although it seemed an unnecessary remark in view of the speed with which he settled himself on a sun lounger. “I just need to get the sun cream.”

“No fair!” Bender grumbled. “What about me?”

Leela paused for a second. “Maybe afterwards,” she said before she vanished inside the building.

Fry looked up at the sky. “Thank you, God!” he said joyfully. “I’m about to get a backrub from a wet, naked, woman!”

“I wouldn’t get that excited,” Leela replied as she reappeared with a tube of cream in her hand. She pressed one of the buttons on the thing on her wrist, and proceeded to run it down from her neck to her feet, making the water evaporate in its wake. “And it’s so much easier than all that tedious drying off with a towel,” she noted as she pulled her clothes back on.

She flexed her fingers and spread a generous amount of the cream over her hands. “Ready?” she asked Fry.

He nodded rapidly. “Oh yeah! This is going to be great.”

Leela smiled, and there was something anticipatory about the smile. “Yes, I think it is,” she remarked as she straddled him.

She quickly but thoroughly rubbed the cream into his back, and climbed off the lounger. “All done,” she remarked.

Fry looked up. “Is that it?” he asked regretfully. “It didn’t take long.”

“Oh, it’s only just beginning,” Leela said as she rinsed her hands off in the pool. She pursed her lips and blew a piercing whistle. “Nibbler! Here, boy!”

She just had time to sit down on a free lounger before a black and red blur shot through the balcony door and made a beeline straight for Fry.

Bender watched the ensuing chaos from the relative safety of the pool. “Man, for a meatbag, you can be pretty evil when you want to,” he shouted above the background noise of Fry’s screams and Nibbler’s wild chattering. “What the hell did you put on Fry anyway?”

Leela produced the tube of cream and tossed it to him. “Synthetic mating pheromones. They work on any species.”

Bender smirked and blew out smoke from his cigar. “Yeah, I can see why you might want them.”

“Hey!” Leela said indignantly. “I’m not that desperate. I confiscated them from Zoidberg after he brought a tank of crabs and used it to try to spawn with them.”

She looked over as Fry’s shrieks reached a new pitch, which were almost equalled by Nibbler’s excited chattering. “Keep it down, Fry!” she called. “You might wake the Professor and Hermes up if you’re not careful.”

As if in response, a sudden silence descended and Nibbler emerged from the fray, looking pleased with himself. He climbed up onto Leela’s lounger and curled up next to her, where he promptly fell asleep.

He was followed by a wild eyed and limping Fry, whose shirt and pants were hanging in tatters. Even the fabric cover on the lounger had been torn to shreds.

He stared blankly at first Bender and then Leela. “If you need me, I’ll be inside,” he said in a hollow voice. “I think I need to get changed.”

Leela nodded. “Knock yourself out. Just make sure you wash that cream off, you don’t want the owls after you as well. Oh, and Fry?”


In future, don’t stare at my ass!
Chug a Bug

Bending Unit
« Reply #18 on: 08-16-2009 17:14 »
« Last Edit on: 08-16-2009 19:12 »

Quote from: boo rad link=topic=18135.msg1053641#msg1053641
I disagree.  Fry is not a character that is operating alone in his own unique universe that is occasionally occupied by Leela.  He is an interactive relationship with her. You would have a stronger point, Chug, if Leela was constant in her attitude toward Fry (with one foot on shore, the other in sea, to one thing constant never in this reversal of shakespeare's poem of sexes).  It has been part of Leela from episode one that there is a connection between her and Fry.  A constant theme of the writers who created her is going back and forth regarding her friend but keeps getter closer and closer to becoming part of a couple.  Wonderpants accurately describes Leela's attitude through her mother that she doesn't know what she wants and goes on to explaing--what could be true although it is just one possibility--that she is aftraid of recognizing her love for Fry and rejects it when it becomes self-evident.  That is a guess but it's not a wild one.  It has more basis from what we know of the character that what she really wants is to be left alone.  I am a feminist and I agree with you if that is what Leela wants then she should jolly well have it and Fry is a creep for pushing himself onto her.  But I don't believe from the storyline, that is what is happening here.  You have the right to create your own character where such is the case and it could well be an excellent and certainly interesting story but     I do believe you make an excellent point that a good futurama story should be submitted to the variious sites for a wider distribution.  There will be some that will say it's too shippy, about the same number who think it's not shippy enough, some will wish there was explicit or at least suggested sex in it but I believe most will enjoy it; I do.

Hmm, you do make some interesting points in there which I'm far too lazy tired to pick out in any detail but you seem to think that my comments referred to this fiction whereas I was simply referring to a vast raft of other very tiresome fanfiction that I've read recently... I would certainly agree with your points in general about their relationship and what was good about this fiction.

it looks like you may be interposing your thinking and values on Leela in your post.

Doesn't everyone?

Well that last update certainly made me laugh, WP. Kudos to Leela. Oh and as to there being more than one person with orange hair about...
boo rad

Bending Unit
« Reply #19 on: 08-16-2009 19:56 »

Point taken.  I knew you were talking about a wide range of fanfiction but I assumed you were giving us wonderpants as a poster child of this complaint.  As to the genre, the majority of fan fiction for Futurama that I have read do not portray Fry as a victim of anyone other than himself and Leela is seldom portrayed as a bitch for rejecting him.  In Wonderpants and most others, Leela likes Fry a lot, knows Fry loves her, appreciates all he has done and does for her but is continually turned off by much of his behavior and the major onus is with Fry to prove to Leela that he has grown and is actively trying to make constructive changes in his life and behavior that will make a difference.  Leela clearly has issues to deal with but that;s another topic.  It's possible you are right and I have been self-selecting what fan fiction I am going to read and that I sub-conciously avoid those that illustrate your complaint.  Your point about stalkers is very interesting and probably does have much merit.  I have talked with inmates in prison about obsessive behavior of stalking and targeting victims.  Actually the majority of NON-sociopaths are aware that their behavior is wrong but do it anyway or flimsily justify it.  But you're right, a little less than half felt their behavior was appropriate and justified and that it was the victim's fault.  I'm glad we also have some common ground in recognizing some good things about wonderpant's piece.
Chug a Bug

Bending Unit
« Reply #20 on: 08-17-2009 19:15 »

Well you certainly know how to make an interesting argument but you'll possibly be better off persueing this on one of the dedicated threads such as  the current shipper one where much of what you're saying is/has been discussed.

Oh and welcome to PEEL.  :)

Bending Unit
« Reply #21 on: 08-17-2009 19:37 »

How did this thread get onto sociopaths and stalkers?


Well that last update certainly made me laugh, WP. Kudos to Leela. Oh and as to there being more than one person with orange hair about...

Bah, everyone's coming up with more interesting ideas than me!

Space Pope
« Reply #22 on: 08-17-2009 19:55 »

Nice update. Not much is going on with the plot yet, but damn if this ain't some amusing scene-setting. I'm liking the interactions between the characters; you have a great handle on the dynamics of their relationships. And your dialogue is getting better (by which I mean more true to the characters). This update was interesting, in that it was more or less propelled by dialogue--which is a good thing, in my opinion, because it makes the pacing a lot more true to that of the show itself. I mean, hearing Fry, Bender, and Leela discussing the, uh, drugging of Farnsworth and Hermes is a lot funnier than some drawn-out description of the crime itself. Well done.

Bending Unit
« Reply #23 on: 08-17-2009 20:33 »

Yeah, the next bit should have some plot developments in it.
AmZ Future

« Reply #24 on: 08-19-2009 18:33 »

I just read all of this It's great, poor Fry getting raped by an alien, ha just kidding  :nono: still, cute F/L parts  :love: ha love the end part, It's true, I'd probably do something sneekier and worse like secretly put exploding gum in his locker. heh heh  :evillaugh: ok so I did, but that was once.

Bending Unit
« Reply #25 on: 08-19-2009 21:27 »


BTW, does anyone know the name of one of the robot bars that Bender goes to?

Urban Legend
« Reply #26 on: 08-20-2009 18:58 »

the bar he usually goes to is O'Zorgnax's Pub.  That and The Hip Joint are the only two places that the characters go to often enough that they have names, I think.
AmZ Future

« Reply #27 on: 08-20-2009 20:48 »

He's right ya know, I'd personally go with O'Zorgnax's   :p That's just mine and his opinion though, use your own too dude

Bending Unit
« Reply #28 on: 08-20-2009 20:59 »

Yeah, the Power Strip is the name of the robot bar!

Urban Legend
« Reply #29 on: 08-20-2009 21:17 »

isnt The Power Strip in Atlantic City though?  Not that it matters when everyone's got access to flying cars that can probably get there in minutes.

Bending Unit
« Reply #30 on: 08-23-2009 20:04 »
« Last Edit on: 08-23-2009 20:06 »


Several hours later, the sun had finally begun to sink below the horizon. Small pockets of shadow were appearing around the tower of the Planet Express building, and the heat of the day was giving way to a cool evening.

One wing of the double doors to the building swung open a fraction, and Fry’s head appeared in the gap. He peered around warily but the street was quite deserted. The pedestrians who would normally been in evidence all seemed to be making themselves scarce.

“Move it, chump!”

The door slammed open, propelled principally by Fry’s head, and he ended up in an untidy heap on the pavement.

Bender sauntered out, whistling to himself. “Bout time!” he observed as he stepped over Fry’s recumbent form. “Man, you already made me wait long enough after everyone else has gone home.”

Fry picked himself up slowly, dusting himself down. This proved no easy task, not least because it ran the risk of violating at least half a dozen public decency laws. After his clothes had earlier been ripped to pieces by Nibbler, he had been unable to find any spares of his customary blue pants and white T-shirt. Since he had been expecting hot weather and left his red jacket at the Robot Arms apartment, it had survived to see another day, but that was all. As a result, he had been forced to wear whatever he could find. After an extensive search of the building, this turned out to be one of Amy’s old sweatsuits, which had been abandoned in the laundry room by its owner.

He stared down forlornly at the sweatsuit. It was bad enough that it was a bright pink colour, but the fact that Amy had most likely discarded it because it had shrunk in the wash was the last straw. The pants had shrunk to the size of shorts and threatened to castrate him with every step, and he was unable to do the zip on the top up beyond his navel.

The end result of this was that he looked like the world’s worst dressed transvestite hooker.

“I wish I was dead,” he muttered to himself.

“OK, there’s a suicide booth right over there,” Bender remarked. “I’m going to the Power Strip in Atlantic City tonight. Hey, why don’t you come along too? It’ll be fun!”

Fry shook his head. “Dressed like this?” he asked incredulously, indicating the sweatsuit.

“Well, you can always stop by the apartment first and get changed,” Bender pointed out.

Fry considered the offer for a moment, but finally decided against it. Being mauled by an amorous Nibbler had left him in a pensive mood, which didn’t fit well with the thought of spending a night in a robot bar.

“Maybe another time,” he said.

Bender shrugged. “Ok, whatever. If you decide to use that suicide booth, don’t forget to leave everything to me in your will.”

He strolled off towards the nearest transport tube, pausing only to state his destination, and a second later he was gone.

Fry stared around him, shivering slightly in the cool air. Amy’s sweatsuit was also proving useless at keeping him particularly warm. Folding his arms around himself for some additional warmth, he set off towards the tube that Bender had just used.

He had only gone a few steps before he came to a stop. The hair on the back of his neck was tingling, as though someone was watching him. He glanced from side to side, but no one was in sight, and the street ahead of him was definitely deserted. He looked behind him quickly, but no one was there either. Nevertheless, the feeling persisted, and he felt sure that someone was nearby. He stared intently at the shadows around the Planet Express building, which had grown slightly since he last looked, but they were nowhere near deep enough to hide anyone who might be lurking there. Shrugging his shoulders, he walked over to the tube, gave the destination as the Robot Arms, and was duly sucked inside.

He gazed down at the city as he was hurled through the transparent cylinders. Despite having lived there for some years now, he hadn’t grown bored of the sight yet. The twilight was deepening, and lights were coming on all over the city.

A few minutes later, he was deposited outside his apartment building. He quickly hurried over to the entrance, trying to ignore the stares and outright laughter from some of his fellow New New Yorkers, and quickly closed the lobby doors behind him. A lift door slid open as soon as he entered the lobby, and he stepped inside, feeling a sense of relief as the door promptly closed and there was a jerk that indicated that the lift had begun to move.


Back on the street, another figure emerged from the tube and stood up. The streetlight directly overhead had burned out a couple of days ago, and the dim light from the adjacent streetlights did not reveal much. There was only a faint glimmer of reflected light in the figure’s eyes as its gaze rose up the building and settled on one window as a light came on, and then it strode purposefully across the street towards the building entrance.


Fry opened the door to Bender’s apartment and walked inside. The inner door to the giant closet that served as his home was ajar, and he pushed it fully open. He turned on the light and immediately disturbed a pair of owls that burst out of a pile of discarded pizza boxes and circled the room briefly before they landed on top of the TV, from where they screeched at him angrily.

Ignoring them, he stripped off the nasty jumpsuit and tossed the two halves at random into the mess on the floor, where they had the slightly unanticipated effect of drawing attention away from the worst piles of empty food packets and mouldy clothes, and thus could only be considered an improvement to the tone of the room.

He fished the cleanest looking pants and T-shirt out of the middle of this scene of domestic anarchy and stepped into them with a sigh of contentment, and then settled into a chair in front of the TV.  At this point, the owls decided that it was time to be somewhere else and made their exit through a narrow hole in the skirting.

He picked up the TV remote control, but before he could turn the set on, there was a knock at the door.

“See who that is, can you Bender?” he called out from force of habit before he remembered where the robot had gone. For a moment, he remained sitting in the hope that whoever was at the door would go away, but then a regular fusillade of knocks shook the door and he reluctantly got up.

“This better be something important,” he called out as he reached for the handle, and with that, he opened the door.

Fry had looked in the mirror every day of his life, and had twice seen his near double from other universes, first when the Planet Express crew had seen their counterparts in the Cowboy Universe, and again when they had met the Universe-1 Planet Express crew.

None of this, however, could have prepared himself for what he now saw: a mirror image of himself standing in the hallway, one hand raised ready to knock on the door again.

He froze to the spot and stared in silent amazement at the doppelganger, vaguely
aware that this must have been how Leela felt when she came face to face with her double from Universe-1 and that his brain seemed to have lost control of his mouth, which was hanging open in what was undoubtedly an embarrassingly unintelligent expression.

In an attempt to regain control of the situation, his brain told his mouth to say something, but it was too busy enjoying its new found independence after 25 years of being told what to do, and refused to do more than produce a few random syllables.

At this point, his double suddenly shoved him back into the apartment, which was made easier by the fact that Fry was still dazed by this turn of events and offered little resistance. It followed him inside and closed the door.

At this point, Fry realised what was happening, and his mouth decided that it had had enough fun and that his brain could take over again.

“Neat costume, Bender!” he exclaimed. “Wow, they can do an amazing job with masks these days. It looks really lifelike. And you even managed to hide your antenna!” He reached out and prodded the double in the face experimentally, and then pinched both his cheeks. “Hey, it even feels just like skin too.”

He waited for an answer, but the double, who seemed rather taken aback by his reaction, said nothing.

A vague suspicion began to steal over Fry. “You know, you ought to be careful wearing that thing. You could actually fool something into thinking that you’re really a human.”

There was still no reply, and the suspicion suddenly crystallised into certainty. “Wait a minute, you’re not Bender! And if you’re not Bender, you must be....”

He folded his arms. “Alright Leela, the joke’s over. It was a good try, but you’re not going to fool me into thinking that there’s really some lookalike of me going around.”

The double rolled his eyes in exasperation, and seemed to decide that enough was enough. A fist shot out and caught Fry neatly in the face, and he was aware of nothing else before blackness took him.

“Wake up, Fry!”

He came to with a start and sat bolt upright before realising where he was. He was in his own bed, with a worried looking Leela sitting next to him in the bed. She stopped shaking him as she realised he was awake.

“Oh Lord, Fry, you were scaring me!” she exclaimed. “You were muttering in your sleep, about Bender and some duplicate of yourself. I thought you were having some sort of nightmare!”

Fry took a deep breath. “I know! I was scaring myself too. I was having a really vivid dream about you trying to trick me that someone was impersonating me, and then they showed up here.”

Leela shook her head crossly. “Well, I did tell you not to drink any Slurm right before going to sleep. You know it always gives you bad dreams.”

Fry nodded. “I know. Look, thanks for waking me up. I didn’t mean to disturb you.”

Leela seemed to soften slightly. “It’s OK. Perhaps some milk might help you get back to sleep.”

Fry ran a hand through his hair and laid back down. “No, I think I’ll be alright. Just give me a few minutes.”

“Are you sure?” Leela asked dubiously. “You did seem tense earlier. Perhaps a shoulder rub would help. And I promise not to use any of those mating pheromones.”

“That’s something I won’t say no to,” Fry said with a grin and rolled onto his front. He felt Leela shift into a more comfortable position and rest her hands on his back.

“That feels good,” he said as she began to knead his shoulders, softly at first and then with increasing strength. “You might have been right, perhaps I did need to relax.”

There was no answer, but Leela continued rubbing his shoulders firmly, and now her grip was beginning to feel a little uncomfortable.

“Not so hard,” he said drowsily.

Instead, she merely pressed harder still, and Fry began to squirm. There was something else wrong too, he suddenly realised. Instead of being warm, her hands suddenly felt very cold, and it even seemed like she had too few fingers.

He lifted his head from the pillow and looked round....but not at Leela.

“Enjoying it so far?” a familiar voice asked.

“What the hell!” he exclaimed. “Bender?! Where’s Leela?”

“Oh, that’s right,” Bender said indignantly. “You don’t mind a back rub from Leela, but when it’s from your old buddy, Bender, that’s a different story!”

“It’s not that,” Fry protested. “It’s just that....”

“Bite my shiny metal ass!” Bender said coldly. “Since I’m no match for Big Boots, I’ll skip the backrub. Maybe you’ll like this instead.”

“Like what?” Fry protested, but Bender was already pressing his fingers down on Fry’s temples.

Fry struggled desperately as the pressure mounted, but Bender was both too strong and heavy for him to move.

The initial discomfort built rapidly into pain, and he squeezed his eyes shut and clenched his fists helplessly. And still the pain kept mounting, until black spots danced in front of his eyes....

For the second time in a few minutes, Fry woke up with a jerk. He laid still for a couple of seconds, trying to get a feel for his surroundings. He was pretty sure this wasn’t another dream, but just to be sure, he opened one eye a fraction and scanned his surroundings cautiously.

At this point, he discovered that he was lying face down on the floor of his apartment, or rather lying on the detritus that covered the floor, and that his hands and feet also appeared to be tied together, judging by their numbness.

His head was pounding painfully from the punch he had taken, and he realised why he had been dreaming about Bender almost crushing his skull, although he also allowed himself a moment of regret that the part of the dream involving Leela hadn’t been real.

The memory of his twin suddenly came flooding back, and with an effort he lifted his head and glanced from side to side. It was possible that the duplicate was standing behind him, but somehow the apartment felt empty.

The window was right in front of him, and judging from the light coming through the curtains, it was morning at the earliest. With a lot of effort, he somehow managed to push himself into a position where he could see the time on a clock, and found that it was in fact getting on for 10am.

His mind raced, or at least moved at a quick trot. Clearly Bender hadn’t been back to the apartment at all, or he would have looked in and found him. And that meant that Bender hadn’t been the double. It couldn’t have been Leela either, for the simple reason that she would never willingly let him miss work. And if neither of them had been the double and no one else had been round to check on him, that meant that no one realised he was missing, and that meant that it could only be because the double was at the Planet Express building instead of him.

“Oh crap,” he groaned. “Why the hell did I think it was Bender or Leela in a costume?”

A new and even more alarming recollection struck him. Leela had mentioned yesterday that there was a delivery booked for this morning, and that they would have to leave at 9.30 to get the delivery there on time. If Bender hadn’t been back to the apartment at all, there was a good chance that only Leela and the double had gone.

He struggled frantically against the knots tying his arms and legs together, but the double had done his work well, and after a couple of minutes he gave up.

He peered round for anything sharp that he could use to cut the knots with, but could see nothing promising amid the depressing abundance of soft edged items littering the floor.

He looked up at the window, wondering if he could somehow attract attention by banging on the glass or even managing to push something out of the window.

And then he had a brainwave. He managed to roll onto his back and wriggled over to the window, collecting Amy’s sweatsuit top along the way. It was only a short distance, but he was still covered in sweat by the time he got there.

“Must cut down on the Slurm and nachos,” he muttered to himself as he paused momentarily for breath.

He gathered himself for another effort, and was eventually able to push himself up so that his back was against the wall. With that done, it was relatively easy to get onto his feet, and he wrapped the sweatsuit top around his hands as best as he could.

“At least it’s good for something,” he said as he clenched his fists and swung them against the glass as hard as he could manage. It proved less effective than he had hoped, as the glass merely creaked protestingly.

He gritted his teeth and swung again, which proved slightly more successful. This time, a small crack appeared in the middle of the glass.

“Come on!” he muttered irritably, and tried again, galvanised by thoughts of Leela alone in the Planet Express ship with his double. There was a sharp cracking noise and a spiderweb of fractures appeared in the glass.

Encouraged by the result, he made another effort, and this time the window bowed to the inevitable and shattered, with a shower of glass cascading to the pavement below.

“Sorry about that!” he called out of the window for the benefit of anyone who might be walking past underneath.

He selected the most jagged looking piece of glass left in the frame, and began scraping the wrist knot against it. It took several minutes of work before the rope finally yielded and his hands were free, by which time he was gasping with the effort.

“No more Slurm ever,” he vowed as he wiped blood off his hands where he had slipped and cut himself on the glass, and quickly undid the knot around his ankles.

He hurried to the inner door and tried to open it, but the double had locked it from the outside and taken the key with him. Fry cursed whoever had forgotten to put a latch on the inside and toyed with the idea of breaking it down, and even peered out of the window to see if there was an easier exit, but the outside of the building was notable for offering a lack of anything to climb down on.

He turned back to the door, but as he wondered how best to break it down, there was a click and he heard the outer door. In a flash, he was beside the inner door, readying himself to fight whoever might enter.

The door rattled briefly as the handle was turned, and then there was a crash as the visitor decided to abandon subtlety and walk through the door. Fry swung a fist as hard as he could manage, and only realised when his fist was in motion that only one person would routinely walk through closed doors.

He pulled his punch as best he could, but still howled in pain as he nearly broke his fingers on Bender’s chassis.

“Yeah, good morning to you too!” Bender said sarcastically as Fry clutched his knuckles. “Didn’t fancy going into work today? Just as well you got your old pal Bender to keep your company, then.”

Fry ignored this as he realised that his worst case scenario had happened. “What are you doing?” he demanded through clenched teeth. “Leela left on her delivery run half an hour ago!”

“Really?” Bender asked innocently, shooting a furtive glance at the clock. “Well, I guess we’ll just have to stay here then.”

Fry growled. “Bender, this isn’t about skipping work for once. I got beaten up by a double of myself last night, and he must be at the Planet Express building by now. If neither of us are there, that means Leela’s alone with whoever’s pretending to be me!”

“Aha!” Bender said slyly. “And you’re worried because she might like him better than you!”

Fry swore impatiently. “Just move, will you!” he snapped as he headed for the door, but then stopped and picked something up from a jumble of empty pizza boxes, discarded Y-fronts, and CD cases.

“Hey, I thought you said we had to haul ass!” Bender grumbled.

“We do!” Fry said, holding out the item he had recovered. “I can’t go without having a can of Slurm first, though!”

Urban Legend
« Reply #31 on: 08-25-2009 03:24 »

In future, don’t stare at my ass!

A little late, but... when Leela's wandering around without her pants, isn't telling Fry not to stare at her ass like... ah... giving him a fresh, hot pizza and asking him not to eat it? The silly girl.

Nice update, too. The plot thickens...
AmZ Future

« Reply #32 on: 08-25-2009 14:16 »

Whoa ho!! Looks like the an evil Fry walking around. Evil-Fry-nevil ha ha  :laff: good update more plees

Bending Unit
« Reply #33 on: 08-25-2009 19:22 »

A little late, but... when Leela's wandering around without her pants, isn't telling Fry not to stare at her ass like... ah... giving him a fresh, hot pizza and asking him not to eat it? The silly girl.

There's staring, and then there's staring. Of the tongue hanging out variety. ;)

Evil Fry? Another idea I'd not thought of! May use that in another fic at some point.
boo rad

Bending Unit
« Reply #34 on: 08-26-2009 18:11 »

I'm inclined to agree with both El Mano y WPants.  Leela is fully aware of how Fry feels about her and how his 20th century brain will react to her naked body including the drooling.  That doesn't mean she should not feel violated, upset that he does not respond to her complaint, tired of his leering and unwanted attention, and generally pissed off.  To paraphrase Wonderpants, there is reacting and there is reacting of which the latter is usually referred to as over-reacting.  In real life and if she has the energy, she should sit him down, get eye contact and tell him forcibly that when he does that to her, it makes her feel badly and is that what he is trying to do?  If she doesn't have the energy she should give him a tongue lashing with the appropriate swear words and sign language, possibly slap him, and/or tie his shorts over this head in a tight knot.  However, in a short story with a character that is often used in humorous manner, it's rather fun that she sicked Nibbler on him although maybe she should have rubbed into his butt and groin.  Maybe Fry then might have considered it somewhat worthwhile.  Stet--leave it in.  Continues to be a good story, suspenseful and definitely has my interest. 

Bending Unit
« Reply #35 on: 08-28-2009 19:41 »

Well, in real life, Fry would probably have gotten a good slap, although this being comedy, he gets a randy Nibbler instead, which is probably worse. ;)

And having gotten this far writing it, I'm beginning to think that the rest of it isn't that great.  :hmpf:
AmZ Future

« Reply #36 on: 08-28-2009 19:48 »

Nah I bet it'll be awesome, then awesomer then awesomist wooo  :laff: keep writing :laff:, keep moving forward  :D

Bending Unit
« Reply #37 on: 09-01-2009 20:52 »
« Last Edit on: 09-01-2009 20:54 »


For the second time in a few hours, the doors to the Planet Express building flew open as Fry crashed bodily into them, although this time he wasn’t being shoved by Bender. He skidded to a halt in the lobby and stared around him briefly before sprinting down the corridor leading to the hangar bay.

And just at that moment, a large pile of paper topped off by a mass of dreadlocks chose to emerge from the second door on his right, leaving him no option but to close his eyes before the inevitable collision. The stack of processed trees exploded into the air like a miniature volcano as Fry cannoned right into Hermes, and both of them went sprawling heavily on the floor.

There were a few seconds of silence while countless sheets of paper wafted to the floor, quickly hiding both Fry and Hermes, and then the entrance doors, which were still swinging wildly backwards and forwards, were pushed open again as Bender sauntered into the building.

He considered the settling blizzard of paper in the corridor, and then strolled over to the largest mound of paper and gave it a hard kick.

This provoked a muffled yelp of pain from somewhere in the middle of the pile, and a moment later, a second, lesser, eruption of paper billowed into the air as Hermes surfaced. He coughed, choked, and finally managed to spit several scraps of paper out of his mouth.

“Sweet chaos of Laos!” he exclaimed, staring heartbrokenly at the mass of paper that covered every inch of floor in a 5 foot radius around him. “I just finished making a giant collage of Bureaucrat 1.0 from spare forms for the Central Bureaucracy annual art competition! Oh, I’ll never be able to put them back in the right order in time now!”

He picked up a couple of sheets that looked like they might have landed in their original sequence, stared around for the succeeding sheet, and realised it was futile and put them back down just as the paper mountain moved again and Fry surfaced.

“Where’s Leela, Hermes?” he demanded.

“Where do you think she is, mon? She’s gone with you on a delivery, of course,” Hermes answered absently, surveying the scene around him. He disconsolately pushed a few of the sheets of paper into a pile, and it was only then that his brain seemed to catch up.

“Fry?! What are you doing here? I saw you leave with Leela, but she isn’t even back yet!”

Fry closed his eyes momentarily as his last hope, that Leela might have not gone on her delivery run for some reason, was shattered.

“That’s because I didn’t go with Leela!” he explained. “Someone’s pretending to be me and they’ve gone with Leela.”

Hermes held up a hand. “Hold on! If they’re pretending to be you, how do I know that you’re not the impostor and the real Fry isn’t on the ship after all?”

Fry clenched his fists impatiently. “Hermes, whoever went with Leela was on time for work! And I’m half an hour late for work! Now who sounds like the real me?”

Hermes frowned, unable to find a solid riposte to Fry, but years of bureaucratic conditioning made him unwilling to concede the point so easily.

“Well, maybe it’s a trick?” he offered. “You might be just pretending to be late to make us think you’re the real Fry.”

Fry gave up and turned to Bender, who was standing impatiently with his arms folded. “We need to find a spaceship!”

“Oh, sure!” Bender exclaimed ironically. “I keep one around just for use in an emergency.”

He gave Fry a sharp smack around the head. “Why the hell would I have a spaceship around somewhere? If I need one, I just steal it or take the keys to the Planet Express ship!”

Fry rubbed his head as he thought quickly. There was a certain attraction to skipping the tedious details and simply taking a ship, but knowing his luck, the NNYPD would be on his tail soon enough, which was one complication too far.

“Well, can we hire one?” he asked.

“Yeah, if you pay!” Bender and Hermes both shot back in unison.

Fry stared back at them. “Come on Hermes, can’t you even hire a ship to help rescue Leela? She’s the best employee you’ve got.”

“No, mon! Rules is rules, as my dear mother liked to say,” Hermes said firmly.

“What about taking my Beta Romeo?” a new voice asked, and Fry, Hermes and Bender all looked round to see Amy standing behind them. “I heard all the noise and came to see what was going on. It won’t take me long to get back to my apartment and pick it up.”

Hermes snorted. “Oh really? You’re going to try and catch up with the Professor’s spaceship with a car, are you?”

“No, she’s right,” Fry interjected. “The car has a fuel guzzler as standard! We might be able to catch up with the ship, especially if they might not be expecting us to realise what’s happened so quickly.”

“Jesum piece, Fry!” Hermes retorted irritably. “Do you know how much fuel you’d need to catch up with the ship? You’d run out in ten minutes, and how are you going to fill up the tank again afterwards?

“Spleesh, ordinary fuel?” Amy said scornfully. “That’s so....middle class! Dad just paid for it to be upgraded with a mini dark matter supercharger.”

Bender gave an appreciative whistle. “Man, those things are hot! Did you know that they had a photoshoot with one in last month’s Playbot? Oh mama, those lines! Anyway, I bagsie driving duties!”

“This isn’t a day trip to Saturn we’re talking about here, Bender,” Fry said impatiently, sensing that time was slipping away. “Amy, if you get the car, can you meet us at Leela’s apartment? We’ll need to pick Nibbler up, and we’d better bring some food for him as well in case we need additional dark matter.”

Amy nodded and hurried off, only just avoiding being knocked out by Zoidberg as he threw the door to his office open.

“Did someone say they had food, friends?” he asked hopefully.

“No!” Bender, Fry and Hermes all said in unison, but Zoidberg was not one to give up easily where food might be involved.

“Are you going for lunch? Zoidberg is hungry...” he asked as he followed them down the corridor and out of the lobby into the street. “

“Beat it already, ya overgrown prawn!” Hermes snapped.

“Actually, we might need a doctor,” Fry said. “Even a useless one like Zoidberg.”

“Hurrah, Zoidberg is needed at last!” the object of their conversation added behind them.

Hermes stared hard at Fry. “Fine, but you’re sitting in the back with him!” he said at last.
boo rad

Bending Unit
« Reply #38 on: 09-04-2009 17:40 »
« Last Edit on: 09-05-2009 06:15 »


 edited 4Sep09 boo radley

Bending Unit
« Reply #39 on: 09-04-2009 19:07 »

I'm thingking it's a little out of character for Bender to be concerned about the legalities of paying for a spaceship rental.

Where's that?
Sure you're not getting him mixed up with Fry?

It is a little disconcerting to listen to Hermes' objections and unconcern for the project to find he is suddenly accompanying the rescure party. 

He just objects to breaking into the petty cash fund. ;)
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