Malpractice Makes Perfect



Prose adaptation by traP

Based on an RP between me and:

Cartman's Girl,

Kenny's Goddess,

and Kyle Gon Jinn

Also featuring:

Ashley and Tweek

Notes:

- The story continues immediately after "Losing One's Head."

- The story arc was RPed between March 13 and March 22. The main players were KG, KGJ, CG and myself. Tweek and Ashley made semi-regular appearances, and are included as characters.

- DragonShadow, Snodin, and MHF had more limited appearances, and I decided to cut them from these prose adepts (this story through the end of the arc) to keep continuity straight, and to reduce the overall length of the stories. However, each of them did contribute importantly to the overall story arc during their appearances, and I want to acknowledge their contributions here.

- Despite the above effort, this fic is 62 (!) pages on Microsoft Word at 10 point font. Final size ended up exceeding 110 kb... and that's without formatting. *falls onto the table exhausted*

- The Prologues and Epilogues: These are just glimpses through Dylan's head, as he (in the story) writes, and reacts to the world around him. This does not occur in the STC series, so other people's fankids (especially Amber in this story) do appear, as does Ellie (who in my regular universe doesn't live in SP yet.)

- The Asides: I can't help it. Yes, it is something of a nod to the late Douglas Adams. And I am ticked that someone else had the idea to do a Hitchhiker's Guide parody before I could get around to it. *fumes* Ah well.

=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

Prologue

Sitting in Miss Choksondik's class as the creative writing assignments were handed back, the kids groaned or cheered their marks. Aimee Steele sat smugly, showing her B- for having turned in a Mark Twain story off, as Wendy Testaburger frowned at her before receiving her own A+ back.

Kat Pierce dropped her pie tin off her head, and it rattled around on the floor for a moment while she squealed.

In the back of the room, Amber Wereneck glanced up at Dylan, and shot him a knowing smirk. Dylan turned back around, confused... he'd barely said two words to the bluehead since she'd arrived a few days earlier... what was her deal?

"Aw god damnit!" That would be Eric Cartman getting his customary F.

"Sweet!" ... and Kyle Broflovski, with his A+...

"Mmmmrrrrfff!" ... and Kenny, right on cue, saying... well, something.

Dylan slumped back in his chair, bored, and waited for his paper to be returned... he had started to become slightly concerned when Miss Choksondik passed the last paper to Timmy. He was getting a little nervous when she returned to her desk and began to lecture on long division. Not that he'd pay any attention to the lecture anyway, or most lectures given in school for that point.

"Few have been taught to any purpose who have not been their own teachers," the words of Joshua Reynolds sang through his head, as Choksondik droned on about remainders and denominators.

Eventually, the torturous task of trying to fill inferior minds with inferior facts ended, and the kids rushed out in a mass to enjoy their precious recess break. Dylan approached his teacher with a mixture of scorn and dread.

"Excuse me."

"Yes, young man?"

"I didn't get my creative writing assignment back."

"You didn't?" she asked, absently, and then pulled her grade book out. "You got a B+."

*Duh,* Dylan thought to himself... he hadn't gotten any grade BUT a B+ since his first week here. Even when he tried turning in a blank paper as an experiment. "But where is the paper itself?"

"Oh, I must have misplaced it."

Dylan trudged off towards the playground without another word. His writings were out there, now, somewhere... probably gathering dust between seat cushions... or perhaps lost underneath the fold of one of his teacher's obscenely large mammaries.

=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

It was lunchtime, and although Dylan wasn't particularly hungry for cafeteria food on even the best of days, he was positively not in the mood to eat at all today. Having been dumped into a garbage container tends to ruin your appetite, he noted to himself as he calmly continued picking garbage out of his hair.

"Nice banana peel," came a snide female voice, surprising Dylan briefly.

"It's the newest fashion in Paris," he replied sarcastically, more on instinct than anything else, as he turned around, to see the blue-haired girl smirking at him.

"Good, it's about time something replaced using carrots as hairpins," she replied, with a cool sarcasm that Dylan was surprised to hear. Then he was surprised again. "Dylan Steele, age 10, last residence Santa Monica, California. Has a twin sister named Aimee, Niece named Ellie also age 10. Very cynical. Ambidextrous. Can play five chords on a guitar, working on a sixth. Limited fluency in Spanish and French. Computer literate. Hopeless bookworm. Highly intelligent. Almost no physical prowess. The latter four traits, combined with a propensity to use words like... well, propensity, make him a Melvin in the eyes of most. Unrequited crush on Wendy Testaburger. Rivalries with Stan Marsh and Terrance Mephisto. Friends with Pip, Tweek, Butters, and Timmy."

Dylan was floored. "Who says I'm friends with Timmy?" he protested weakly.

Amber shrugged. "Had to put something false in my notes to throw any would- be counter-agents off the track," she replied cryptically. "You're also paranoid, as evidenced by my inability to get anything else on you."

"What are you talking about?" A synapse fired. This lunatic expected to get MORE on him? More WHAT?

Amber flashed a notebook. "I've got at least four pages on everyone else at this school. Did you know Eric Cartman sleeps with a Clyde Frog doll?"

"What are you, some kind of spy?" Dylan had no idea what a Clyde Frog was, but he wasn't going to let her know that.

"Yes," she replied, as she wrote on a page "Doesn't know what Clyde Frog is" quickly.

Dylan blinked, and briefly, his curiosity got the better of him. "Ok, I'll bite. What do you want?"

"Other than to get the dirt on you so I have a complete set?" she asked with a smirk. "Just wanted to give you your paper back."

"Oh," Dylan said, accepting his paper back. "I... guess she accidentally gave you back my paper or something."

"Something like that," Amber replied, again with that cryptic tone. "You should write more."

"You read it?"

"How else was I supposed to figure out you're a sci-fi geek?" she asked, walking away.

Dylan stood, stunned momentarily, then an angry statement crossed his face.
=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

School was out for the day, and most of the kids filed onto the bus for the trip home. But one of the kids he was looking for wouldn't be on the bus.

"You had NO right!" he yelled, as he caught up to Amber, who was hiding in a tree watching the other kids.

"Ssssssh! You'll blow my cover," Amber whispered.

"You don't have any cover if even I noticed you go up there," Dylan replied. To make his point more clearly, he adjusted his glasses, allowing the sun to reflect off of the coke-bottle bottom thickness lenses.

"Damn," she answered, and jumped down from the branch. "I hope you're happy, I was JUST about to get some really good dirt on Bebe cheating on Clyde."

"You had no right to read my paper! It's private!"

"I'm a spy. It's my thing."

"And what about giving Butters a copy?"

"Wha?"

"Oh, don't play innocent with me! He used a line from my story today at recess, and..."

"Wow, you really ARE paranoid," Amber replied, smirking. "Anyway, I didn't give Butters your story. It's probably just a coincidence."

"Oh." Dylan began to realize just how silly he sounded. It was probably just a coincidence! Of course! Maybe she was right, maybe he was getting paranoid.

"I only gave a copy to Nath."

"WHAT?!"

"You know, Australian, plays with a rat, in a wheelchair because of injuries suffered..."

"I KNOW who Nath IS," Dylan interrupted... damn if he was going to sit through another laundry list of traits by this... freak. "You had NO..."

"No right, I know, I know. Yeesh, for a walking dictionary you sure don't have a lot of comebacks," Amber observed smugly. "Look, it was a fun story. You should continue it."

"Go lick a light pole or something... Besides, where would I even continue it from?"

"Well... you could write what happens at the hospital you had them all go to at the end..."

"Oh yeah, I'm really gonna continue it just because some wanna-be James Bondette tells me to," he replied defiantly. Damn if this crazy woman was going to goad him.

Amber just smiled at him. Dylan stormed off, for the long walk (now that he had missed his bus) back home.

=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

BANG, his backpack hit the wall with a resounding thud.

SWISH, his jacket hit the opposite wall.

BASH BASH, his boots hit the third wall, spreading bits of snow onto the carpet.

SQUEEE, his ass hit his chair.

Dylan hadn't worked the rage out of his system yet, and even Aimee had the common sense to avoid Dylan when he was like THIS.

But there was one person who didn't have that common sense. Ellie stuck her head into Dylan's room, smirking.

"¿Que pasa, raton?"

"¡Puta!", Dylan replied, spitting the Spanish epitaph out. In truth, he wasn't even sure what the word meant, but he'd heard it bandied about often enough when he lived in California and Florida, to know it was something bad. To emphasize his point, he grabbed a book off his shelf, and hurled it at his niece. A synapse noted briefly that a book that should have been there was missing, but it was probably just misplaced.

Ellie just laughed, however. "You get gooder at Español!" she said, after she was done chuckling, and Dylan had gone from a hot rage to a cold, seething one. "What happen?" she asked, finally, after her uncle had failed to come back with some statement of disdain or a sarcastic brush-off.

"She actually has the nerve to think I'm going to write a sequel to this story! What gall! What presumption!"

Ellie blinked. "¿Que?"

"Oh never mind! Go... go smoke your brains out or something." Oh, THAT was mature, Dylan, he scolded himself.

"Later," Ellie replied. "Girl ask you write story, and you go be all loco?"

Dylan replied by turning away in his chair silently.

"So why you be all pissy?"

"Because," Dylan said, heaving a heavy sigh, "she was right. I am going to write a sequel. DAMNIT, how does she know so much about me?"

Ellie shrugged, and walked out of the room, having gained only confusion for her trouble. Dylan watched her leave, sighed again, and then turned his computer on, hating himself for it every step of the way. After a moment, the computer beeped, and Dylan began to type.

=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

Malpractice makes Perfect A short story by Dylan T. Steele

=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

On an insignificant speck of dirt, orbiting a relatively dim star at the edge of our galaxy, arose a planet that gave birth to some of the most interesting creatures that ever existed in the universe.

Unfortunately, 65 million years ago, a comet collided with that planet, and the dinosaurs, as they were later named, tragically went extinct.

From this disaster, one would think that, over 65 million years, nature would work to create an even better model out of the ashes. Instead, however, the true disaster was the species that emerged after 63 million years of work.

That creature began to walk upright, and it called itself "man."

It had a propensity for naming everything it saw, even if it was dead. Thus, it even named the species that, had it survived, would have made a delicious meal out of man. It also invented words for other, less important things, such as "hat," "boot," and "thermonuclear warhead."

It was, almost without exception, an entirely unremarkable race of barely sentient upright apes.

However, by some major twist of fate (which was probably just a coincidence), a small group of these apes managed to acquire a spaceship, which had been built far from Earth (which was what the insignificant rock was named by man), but somehow had fallen into the hands of a merry band of lunatics.

You see, the universe had always intended, once it saw what a gross error nature had made in allowing "man" not to be eaten by "dinosaurs," to protect the remainder of itself by declaring the Earth an insane asylum. With the exception of Elvis Presley, few members of that species had ever traveled very far from the Earth, and it was the hope of most neutral observers that the remaining members of the insane band of upright apes would eventually use the "thermonuclear weapons" that a brave alien known only as Albert Einstein had sparked the invention of, thus allowing Earth to try again to create dinosaurs.

Although, if Earth did try again, given its piss-poor track record, it would probably come up with a race of tentacle-less cockroaches or four- assed hyenas...

This story is not about the hyenas or cockroaches, unfortunately.

Instead, it is the story of the members of the Homo sapiens species who managed to escape (with their stolen spaceship) the surly gravitational straightjacket of the Earth, and began to travel the universe, much to the dismay of most neutral observers.

Previously, these fools had managed to get themselves injured while combating a gigantic feline (which would make a fine prototype for a replacement species, incidentally), and had decided to seek medical attention. Somehow slightly smarter than their fellow apes, these people realized that the doctors on their own home world were just as incompetent as they were, and so they traveled to the nearest planet which had a better medical reputation than their own homeland.

Unfortunately, they chose the one planet where medical attention was even worse than on Earth. At least Earth has Beverly Hills, and it's skilled plastic surgeons.

=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

The Falcon had arrived at the hospital on the Planet of the Pikachu approximately twenty minutes before. In the cockpit of the Aluminium Falcon, Dylan was happier than he'd ever been in his life. His perpetual torturer was dead, he'd been able to talk to a cute girl without making a total ass of himself, and now he had actual, honest to goodness, quiet time to himself. Not even Aimee could ruin this day!

"Computer?"

"Da," the computer replied, in a nasal faux-Russian accent. Dylan made a mental note to change that when he got a chance.

"Tell me about this planet."

"Is planet Baka Nine, in sector Otaku seven, it is being home residence of all creatures of biological classification Animeicus Pokèmon Extraneous."

"Clarify that, please?", Dylan asked, perplexed.

"They're where all Pokèmon that Ash Ketchum does not wanting anymore go to live out rest of their days in Communist Utopia."

"Who?"

"Never be minding. Recently there is being plague on planet, but it is being not contagious to humans, and quarantine control is being in effect. There is not being any other news about planet Baka Nine."

Dylan kicked his leg up onto the control panel, and pulled out a book from his backpack to pass the time. Whatever these pokèmon things were, and why ever they were important... no, he decided, they weren't.

=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

Inside the waiting room of Pokèmon General Hospital, two patients and a corpse waited impatiently. KG had been crushed under the weight of that giant cat, and her hips were shattered. KGJ, missing a leg entirely, wasn't any better off. And traP had managed to get himself decapitated completely, which was beginning to emit a rather unpleasant odor.

Aimee, Zidachu, and CG waited impatiently. Humans were very good at waiting impatiently, interestingly.

"How long do we have to wait, anyway?" KGJ asked.

"Well," CG replied, checking a slip of paper in her hands. "We're number 25,589,256."

"Jesus!" KG exclaimed through the pain.

"That's not so bad, it depends on what they're already up to," KGJ said.

"Now serving number five," came an announcement from the front.

"SHIT!" KGJ concluded his thought.

"Well, I have an idea," CG said, and then began to whisper something to Zidachu. He nodded with a grin on his rat-like face, and ran off. "Now listen, an alarm's gonna go off..."

"How do you know that?" Aimee asked. "Psychic powers?"

"No, because I told Zed to pull the alarm," CG replied. "Everyone except the doctors will evacuate. We are going to stay here anyway, got it?"

The idea sank in slowly. "But... won't that get them really bad treatment?" Aimee fancied herself a master of human behavior, and wasn't ecstatic about the prospects for this plan.

"Hell, gets us out of here quicker, doesn't it?" came CG's answer.

"But... I don't want them to put KGJ's leg on KG's body or something. It could make buying jeans, like, really hard!" Aimee protested.

"She's right!" KG exclaimed.

"I hope you know what you're doing," KGJ warned.

"Me too," CG replied, crossing her fingers.

Well, the deed was going to be done no matter what was said now. Aimee decided she may as well take advantage. "If they die, dibs on KGJ's dragons," she whispered to CG.

"Deal," CG replied.

"If anything happens to me, why dragons are willed to my buddy Crazed Spook," KGJ announced, causing Aimee to curse. Foiled again.

"I'm NOT dying! And neither is KGJ!" KG said, going mad. It was a short trip.

At that moment, the alarm sounded, causing the other patients in the waiting room to evacuate. Our "heroes" sat, wincing in pain at the sound that was created.

"Gah... minor... third," Aimee said, completely misidentifying the sound. It was, in fact, a quarter step below a minor second, which has been recently banned by the United Planets Commission on bad music for being cruel and unusual composing. When this occurred, of course, musicians began to use the note pair exclusively in their works, to protest the restriction on their statement. The end result was deafness in over 90% of their fans, which unfortunately has not yet had an impact on their record sales.

KGJ shoved his walkman over KG's ears at max volume, to protect her from the noise, as CG covered her ears protectively.

The alarm died out as quickly as it had started. "Well, I'll go find a doctor now," CG announced. "Stay here."

"Like we have a choice," KGJ noted.

Aimee shrugged. "I'll stay too. I'd rather avoid meeting aliens. Been eaten enough times for one life. Besides, all I know how to say in alien is Marklar. And I can't spell it."

"Not a bad idea," KGJ said, smirking a little.

"I think we should all avoid aliens," KG replied, more seriously.

"Nah, some aliens are cool. Elvis, for example," KGJ said.

^^Hyeah, Elvis is cool^^ Zidachu said, in a language known as Pokètalk.

=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

A note here about Pokètalk seems to be in order. Like most semi-intelligent species, such as the dolphin, the bumblebee, and the human, Pokèmon too must constantly talk, or else their brain begins to think, which causes doom for themselves and their neighbors. However, nature didn't see fit to give Pokèmon much in the way of usable syllables, instead granting them inexplicably only the ability to say the component parts of what made up their name. In English, no less, despite the fact they originated in Japan.

All of this, of course, is just a coincidence.

Fortunately, for every problem, there is a solution. In this case, despite the fact that there are 251 currently known separate species of Pokèmon (which itself is incorrect, since many of these species are in fact evolutions (which is, as you know, an incorrect use of that term, since evolution can only truly occur over a period of many generations, as desirable traits like the ability to chew gum and walk at the same time, or the ability to sing off-key to the sound of bubblegum pop music, are passed down from parent to child, while undesirable traits, such as the ability to think logically, are removed from the gene pool by making the possessors of these traits incapable of finding a mate) of the same creature, reducing the total number significantly.), for some inexplicable reason, every single one of these species can communicate with members of the other species without hindrance, accent difficulties, or even the addition or subtraction of the often extraneous letter "u." It is a significant feat, one that the humans who had taken to capturing and using these creatures were still very far away from mastering.

This, too, is a coincidence. Not to mention a horrible misuse of parenthetical phrases. Reread the above if you are lost, and then check again.

What was not a coincidence, markedly, was that CG, KGJ, and KG were all trainers of these Pokèmon creatures, and each had worked very hard in their pasts, putting a good two or three minutes into the effort of learning to understand the language of these creatures, who were then thrown into battles against each other for the personal glory of their slavemasters. What was also not a coincidence is that they had entirely and utterly failed to actually learn the language, and could therefore only guess as to what was being said in that excited high-pitched whine.

The fact that these creatures could also understand English perfectly well... this is also just a coincidence.

=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

"Who's Elvis?" Aimee asked, confusedly. The fact that she did not know whom Elvis was, this was also a coincidence.

"You don't know who Elvis is?!" KG asked, incredulously. "He has a snorkel!!"

"Yes, he does," KGJ agreed, laughing.

Unfortunately, the act of laughing had thrown Zidachu to the ground hard, as he fell from what was left of KGJ's lap. "Zi..." he said, rubbing his head.

=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

This is what I was talking about. To human ears, their speech sounds just like them saying their names. And even to barely human ears such as Aimee's.

=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

"Chaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa.....", he said, trying to get to his feet.

"Aw crap," Aimee said, ducking.

=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

Oh, did I forget to mention that they tend to stretch out the screaming of their own names whenever they're about to attack? And yet for some reason, the victim of their attack never seems to hear it coming. But this is probably just a coincidence too.

=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

"...chu!", Zidachu finished, as he got to his feet, then began to sway from foot to foot, as he used a nearby stretcher to stabilize him, and rubbed his head.

Aimee ducked her head back up. "No boom?"

^^Paranoid stupid freaks,^^ Zed muttered, as he climbed up into KG's lap. After all, he had never intended to attack, despite the coincidental fact that the author sometimes tries to mislead the reader.

CG returned. "Well, we got SOME good luck, guys."

"Yeah?" asked KGJ

"Yes, I found a doctor willing to help you!"

"Whew," said KGJ. KG also looked relieved.

"Although... some of the nurses here look too familiar. It's freaky," CG mused.

"Familiar?" Aimee asked.

"Familiar, yes..." CG said.

At this moment, the nurse appeared. A short, fat, red-haired egg-shaped girl. Her name was Tinsey.

"Tinsey!", Tinsey said, confirming her name for the stupider members of the group.

"Oh good lord," KGJ exclaimed, certainly not expecting this.

"I remember you... from... somewhere," Aimee said, cocking her head. She looked a little like that girl Tina...

=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

You see, coincidences are only one aspect of life for members of the insignificant species Homo sapiens. Another important aspect of human existence is the fact that, when the unexpected happens, it tends to blindside even relatively sentient members of the species like a symphony orchestra being interrupted by a fiery plane crash or a drunk Frenchman. Depending on the airline you choose, these may actually be the same things.

But more importantly, a lesson is here to be learned. The universe hates questions. Especially stupid questions. Because then it is forced to give stupid answers. For example, one should never, ever, answer a question with a question. Because, whenever you do, another English teacher is born.

=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

As Tinsey began to take notes on the assembled patients, the patients glanced around worriedly.

"Does she even know what she's doing?" KG asked.

"Would she be a fully qualified nurse if she didn't?" CG replied, answering a question with a question, unknowingly inducing labor pain on a poor woman in Peoria, Illinois.

"She would be, if this was Earth," Aimee noted.

"This IS the Pikachu planet," KG said, frowning. She was beginning to suspect that she'd have been better off on Earth after all.

Tinsey decided it was time to show her medical prowess. Taking her clipboard, she whacked KGJ in the head with it, and then began to roll the jedi away towards the examination room.

"I don't think she likes me," KGJ noted wryly, as he was wheeled away.

"Tinnnnnnnnnsssseeeeeyyyy!" the nurses' voice sang out, as the pair disappeared from sight.

Aimee pulled out a small, dog-eared translation book. "Tinsey... is that with two o's? Or one?"

=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

One of the more peculiar inventions of the ape race is the translation book. For some reason, although they wage wars against their neighbors for such silly reasons as they have a different culture, or a different religion, or they simply like their real-estate better, they seem also to have the uncanny need to travel to that nation, where no one understands their language, and then to ask them "Does this dress come in blue?"

Nevermind the fact that if the answer were to be anything other than "yes" or "no," such as "Perhaps but we're out of stock currently," that the answer is wholly incomprehensible. However, one group of apes has solved this problem quite smartly. After they make a couple futile attempts with a phrase book (and then on occasion attempt any foreign phrase they know, regardless of what language it actually is), they invariably toss it aside (and therefore forget it exists) and then scream their demands, questions, or exclamations as loudly and slowly as they can in their own language, believing somehow that if they speak it loudly and slowly enough, it will suddenly become comprehensible to foreigners.

That group of apes named themselves "Americans." Aimee was an American.

=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

KGJ was not an American, but this is not important to the story. He was, however, missing his left leg, and this is important to the story.

"So, where are we going anyway?", he asked.

^^Firstly, to take you to have a bone scanning, then a blood test, then see if we got any spare legs laying around.^^

Well, that is what Tinsey did say, as a point of fact. However, what KGJ heard, of course, was...

"Tinnnnsey Tin.. Tin Tinnnnnsey."

"Did not get that. I don't know why I even bothered asking. Guess I'm just making conversation," KGJ admitted. Of course, had he not kept talking, he might have started thinking, and no one wanted to see that. He didn't realize this was the reason, of course.

Tinsey, for her part, having never had a non-Pokèmon patient, had not expected this. However, being of a more intelligent species, she had a solution, and simply wrote what she had said on her clipboard, and passed it over to KGJ.

"Oh," he said, then pulled out an ice cube that contained his own severed leg. "I've actually still got mine here, you see."

^^Oh, good.^^

"Will it work?"

^^It should.^^

=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

You may be wondering to yourself, why after such a big deal was made of the fact that, although Pokèmon are perfectly capable of understanding proper English, Humans lack the capacity to understand Pokètalk, that the preceding conversation moved so smoothly.

It was probably just a coincidence. The coincidence, in this case, of course, is the fact that there is no lazy manner in which to continually render these interactions.

Again, fortunately, for this problem, nature has provided a solution.

Subtitles.

=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

Meanwhile, the doctor, who appeared to be yet another of these Pokèmon, finally appeared, and through the miracle of subtitles, communicated his intent.

^^Okay okay I'm here! Now... crushed bones and a missing head I take it?^^

"Well, I'd be the crushed bones," KG said.

The doctor glanced over at traP's corpse. Aimee thought (which was a first for her) back to what she had been told... under no circumstances was she to allow them to actually work on traP. That was, in fact, her purpose for having been there in the first place. She had lost a game of paper-rock- scissors, and therefore had to guard the corpse.

"Um... she's the missing head!" she exclaimed suddenly, pointing over at Ashley.

Ashley, caught unawares, pointed at herself. "I am?"

^^Hyeah, I can see that... I'll put Ashley down for a head scan then...^^

=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

Now, you may be wondering, since Ashley had not previously been mentioned in the story, where she came from, and how she came to be at the hospital on another planet.

There is a simple phenomenon here, however, well known to most sentient species, and even some semi-sentient species like the dolphin, the bumblebee, and in some cases, even the lowly human.

The plot contrivance.

=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

^^...and as for you,^^ the Doctor continued, after having been so rudely interrupted by the author, indicating KG, ^^I don't suppose having your brain being teleported into another body would do, would it?^^

"No way!" KG said, frowning.

"If she doesn't want her body, I'll take it. Guys are ALWAYS throwing themselves at HER body," Aimee noted. It was probably the most astute observation she had made this millennium.

Although KG didn't appreciate it. She glared at the pint-sized blonde.

"Sorry, just trying to help," Aimee replied meekly.

^^Well, we do have a large variety of bodies available to choose from. Judging by your current state, there's nothing else we can do for you.^^

"But I don't WANT another body! There's nothing else you can do for me?"

^^I'm sorry, either that or death.^^

"I've lived this long," she said, sighing. "I don't want to die!"

=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

A word here about death seems to be in order. You see, unlike the bagel creatures of Omicron Chi seven, humans when they die, have a choice of three horrible fates.

The first alternative, of course, is a place called Heaven. Unfortunately, in order to get to this place, one must regularly attend a boring location called "church." Every week. This peculiar institution exists with the preconceived notion involving a lot of prayer and a lot of singing of songs called "hymns." Invariably, those who make the effort to enter Heaven through this route end up falling asleep within, or simply getting bored. Interestingly, a major part of this belief is that, in heaven, one performs the very acts that they grow to quietly resent in church, but on a completely constant basis. It is a most illogical end for a most illogical species. Although, some sources argue that there is an upside to heaven; namely that it is a clothing optional environment.

The second alternative is for those who fail to enter Heaven correctly, due to either their selection of the wrong sect of the wrong religion, or simply for failing to achieve the entrance requirements for heaven. In this place, called "hell," it is believed that one lives with all the other people who did not live a perfect life, and therein they are to be burned constantly. You see, hell exists underground, and as any geologist can tell you, the interior of any geologically active planet is exceedingly hot, so this is the one part of organized religion that actually has some basis in fact. Unfortunately, of course, the fact is that perfect people are exceedingly boring, and their absence is probably the one blessing of this place, but it may be sufficient that, given the choices, this might very well be a viable endpoint.

And of course, for those who have no belief in the afterlife, they can simply cease to exist, and their body can either be burned into ashes to be stored on a distant relative's mantelpiece until a clumsy child knocks the ashes over, causing their eventual resting place to be the inside of a vacuum cleaner bag at a local garbage storage site, or alternatively, they can be buried in the ground, where their flesh is consumed by bacteria, insects, worms, and eventually plants, such that they may eventually return to their normal vegetative state, in a roundabout way.

It is little shock that most people end up with either the second or the third option as their choice. What is a shock, however, is that, despite the advantages offered by ANY of the three choices, as known by independent observers, that members of the human race would prefer a fourth option, the worst option of all; the effort to prolong their life as long as possible.

You see, no matter how bad death seems, immortality would be far worse. Especially if it meant having to go to church every Sunday forever, and yet not ever gaining the aforementioned tangible advantage of heaven. Also, quite tragically, one would eventually run out of new things to do, and boredom would set in; and boredom (which may very well be an aspect of heaven, unfortunately) is a living hell.

This principle can be summed up with the infamous phrase "Damned if you do, damned if you don't."

=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

In the scanning room of the hospital, (so named because it contained lots of expensive equipment that didn't really serve any useful purpose, but looked quite visually impressive, and was therefore useful in enticing patients to grudgingly pay high medical insurance bills so that, when they got sick, the equipment could therefore be used on them) Tinsey and KGJ arrived.

^^Now, I need to take some blood, okay?^^ Tinsey asked. With that, she pulled out an enormous needle, which looked more suited for use on an equestrian than a human.

"I don't know what you just said, but I've got a fairly good idea," KGJ said. The needle required no translation.

Tinsey laughed a little, sounding partially like an eight-year-old child, and partially like a sadistically brutal butcher about to seep the life- sustaining red blood cells from KGJ's body. With a swift move, she jabbed the needle into KGJ's arm, and drew a significant about of blood before withdrawing the sharp implement.

"Was it really necessary to use such a large needle?"

"Tinsey!", she replied, nodding. Patients, especially human patients were so gullible. She stuck some blood into one of the big flashing machines, and patiently waited for it to inform her of... whatever the machine was for. Perhaps it was a coffeemaker.

Probably not a coffeemaker, since the machine eventually spat out a printout. Tinsey read the paper quickly, then pocketed it and began to wheel her patient out.

"Where now?"

^^Transplantation room.^^

"Swell."

=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

"Why can't you just slap me in a full body cast and put me in a wheelchair or something?" KG asked. Her questions had been getting more and more insistant.

^^Your body can't heal.^^

"Why not?!"

^^Well each bone is broken, and smashed into tiny millisegments. Hell, I'm surprised you're alive now.^^

"Can't I be confined to a wheelchair then? It's just my stupid legs...or get fake ones or something! I really like my body like this... it's not THAT bad, is it?"

^^Pretty much. Looks like you can't go wee-wees again either.^^

"THOSE bones?" Aimee asked, incredulously.

KG sighed deeply, and wanted to cry. "Fuck."

^^Oh, fine then! We'll see what else we can do,^^ the doctor replied, and stormed off. Damn patients, they wanted everything their way. No respect for medical creativity.

=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

In the transplantation room, Tinsey and KGJ arrived, and immediately Tinsey took the precaution of placing earplugs in her ears. The fact that she did so was most assuredly not a coincidence.

"What are those for?" KGJ asked.

^^The anesthetic is coming,^^ Tinsey replied, pointing towards the door.

"Why do you need ear plugs?" KGJ asked, confused by the answer.

Rather than answering, Tinsey grabbed a rope, and pulled it, revealing a lighted stage.

To the horror of KGJ, Dionypuff walked on stage, and began to sing.

"This is cruel and unusual torture," KGJ protested. However, Tinsey couldn't hear him due to the earplugs, and Dionypuff was too busy singing to hear. Thus, KGJ was asleep shortly.

=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

Musical talent is an almost randomly assigned ability. Other than the planet of Taranitus Three of course, whose residents are completely without musical ability of any sort, and thus produce only boy bands. Incidentally, this is the planet's sole export, and yet it is now, inexplicably, one of the wealthiest worlds in the galaxy; almost rich enough, in fact, to purchase good taste.

Dionypuff wasn't from Taranitus Three. He was, in fact, like Tinsey and Zidachu, a member of the species Animeicus Pokèmon Parkèmons. Not exactly related to the more common Pokèmon, but neither quite human either, their origin was as mysterious as it was largely coincidental.

But theirs is another story altogether. The only thing which matters now, is that Dionypuff had an ability shared with his close cousin, Animeicus Pokèmon Extraneous Jigglypuff, namely the fact that whenever he sung, any creature who heard the music immediately fell asleep.

It is widely suspected that Mel Torme is also a member of this species.

=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

At this point in the narrative, it was obvious that KG wished for a way to be healed, without having to lose her own body.

"I know how to heel," Ashley announced, breaking the silence.

KG blinked once at Ashley, then smiled a bit, having come to expect this sort of a non-sequitor from her erstwhile friend.

"Can you roll over, Ashley?" Aimee asked.

"Roll over?"

"You know, heel, stay, roll over..."

"ooooh!" Ashley said. She proceeded to shake a paw, and bark.

Aimee grinned, and glanced back up at KG, who was the closest thing to an adult present. "Can I keep her?"

"Sure, I guess..." KG answered, uncomfortably.

"Killer! I bet she'd love some pie flavored dog food."

"Probably," KG agreed.

=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

One of the great coincidences of the universe is that lunatics are unabashedly obsessed with pie.

Throughout history, in fact, this has been true. It is well known to those who memorize useless trivia that Euclid, the infamous Greek mathematician, was quite off his rocker. It was his decision to assign the letter "Pi" to perhaps the most important number in existence; the amount that represents an appropriate tip in a restaurant for average service.

Hannibal, after he had lain siege to the city of Rome, celebrated by consuming a large pumpkin pie. The fact that he got a pumpkin pie in Europe, when pumpkins were indigenous only to the western hemisphere is coincidental.

For a long period of history, it was in fact fashionable to be insane. Marie Antoinette, for example. "Let them eat cake," she had said, however this is a misnomer, as the French, not being a civilized (even by the relaxed standards of Earth) race, lack a separate word for such important concepts as "pet," "victory," and of course, "pie," and are therefore required to use the word for "cake" for each of these concepts.

There is a rumor that there is even a batch of lunatics who add vodka and spuds to their obsessions, but the chronicler of these events puts no faith in such hearsay.

It is unknown why this occurs, to this very day.

=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

While Ashley began to wag her tail, and Aimee complimented her on what a good little dog she was, Zidachu made his reappearance, right on time for the beginning of Act II.

"Zi!" he exclaimed, as he approached KG to console her. "Zidachuuuuuu."

"Hey there little buddy," KG said sadly.

Zidachu responded to this by licking KG's face. Generally, such actions are considered anti-hygienic, or worse yet, fun, by most right-wing zealot races. However, as has been previously noted, Zidachu was not one of these.

KG responded by patting Zidachu's head.

The sickeningly cute scene was broken by the approach of Nurse Tinsey, who entered the room with a stretcher, and announced her entry.

^^I'm here for the next patient.^^ Of course, everyone except for Zidachu heard "Tinsey!"

"Zi? Zidachu?"

Tinsey nodded. "Tinsey!" She then proceeded to grab traP's lifeless corpse, and to it she placed his severed head, and rolled away.

=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

Nearby, Aimee was attempting to train Ashley, which, although neither realized it, was the greatest example of futility since the formation of the Washington Generals.

"I wonder if you could be a good guard doggie," Aimee asked, more rhetorically than not.

Ashley's response was to place a spike collar on her neck, and then to fall asleep.

"Just like Slash," Aimee sighed, and turned away... something was wrong, here, but she couldn't quite put her finger on it.

Ashley suddenly grew tired of being a canine, and instead became a pig, and ran away.

Zidachu and Aimee glanced up simultaneously at the sound of the squealing.

"Bacon!" Aimee exclaimed, and then gave chase, completely ignoring whatever it was that she had forgotten; it couldn't have been very important.

Ashley, now realizing her predicament, decided the best move now would be to hide in a big puddle of mud. Unfortunately, it seemed a wild boar had already made a home of this place, and he now raised his snout at Ashley, warningly.

"Eeeee! Two piggies!" Aimee exclaimed.

=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

CG returned, and pushed KGJ into the waiting room. "He's back," she said, causing KG to glance up.

"Thank god."

"It went well, according to the doc. He should be able to walk when he wakes up."

KGJ took advantage of the brief lull to let loose the 47th loudest snore ever recorded on the planet Baka Nine.

"Maybe we should wake him with a shock," CG said, looking around for wherever Zidachu had gotten to.

"Hey, let him rest."

KGJ snored again, eclipsing his previous mark, and reaching 24th on the all- time list.

"Gah, can he snore, or what?!"

"You don't know the half of it," KG replied with a slight smile.

KGJ, despite being unconscious, decided to prove it. The noise that shortly escaped his body, only a snore by a technical definition, far exceeded any other previously on the Pokèmon planet, both in volume and in duration. Incidentally, he also tied the all-time galactic mark for snoring with this noise, a mark that had originally been set at a Mel Torme concert in 1979. And that concert had had the advantage of having well over a dozen people in the audience.

"Dah!" CG exclaimed, sticking a sock into his mouth.

"You're going to kill him!"

"No, it's thin enough to let him breathe, yet thick enough to stop the snore."

"Ooooh, I see... remind me to invest in some of those."

=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

In the love puddle of mud, the wild boar was beginning to perform a courtship ritual with Ashley, first nudging her with his snout, then as Ashley sat there, stunned, he licked her face.

"Two piggies... babies... pork belly futures," Aimee said to herself, rubbing her hands.

^^Maybe I can fry them up for you.^^ Zidachu said.

"Huh?"

Zidachu proceeded to write what he had said, and handed the piece of paper over, because the idiot who was in charge of the subtitles had fallen asleep during the preceding page.

Aimee, for her part, looked at the paper, squinted, turned the paper upside- down and shrugged. "I can't read your handwriting."

In point of fact, Zidachu's handwriting, while limited by his possession of only three fingers, was still far more legible than most people's.

It was at this critical junction that Tinsey passed by, carrying what looked a rather lot like traP's head.

"Oh, well, whatever you said, anyway. I trust you, little dude," Aimee said to Zidachu. However, naggingly, there was still that slight feeling that, something had happened. She just couldn't figure out what it was.

=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

The reaction time of a human being is highly variable. While there are some who are capable of instantaneously responding to stimuli received, there are others who have a slight time delay, as the message that something has occurred of significance attempts to plow through the neuron web, and find the correct synapse to trigger.

The time it takes for such a message to travel is actually inversely proportional to the importance of the message. This principle applies to all message delivery services, in fact; if only one piece of mail gets lost, for example, it will always be the most vital message of the group. Junk mail, on the other hand, is always instantaneously delivered. In fact, with the advent of the internet, this is now all but guaranteed.

This was most graphically demonstrated with the example of Emperor J'tak of the Morlon Empire. His brain continued to register such relatively unimportant signals, such as the requirement that it was time to brush the hair on his tail, or execute a political prisoner, for a full 47 years before the message finally registered in his mind that he had died.

=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

CG was starting to get bored waiting for KGJ to wake up. After having drawn a smiley face on the Jedi's nose, there was really little else to do.

"Mmmm...," KGJ said in his sleep (despite the sock that was still there in his mouth; it completely obscured the next word he said, but it is almost certain that, if he wants to survive, that he will claim that it was either KG, or a pet name for KG.)

"He's waking up!" CG noted.

"mm....," KGJ concluded, and then began to snore again.

"Awww damn," KG said.

"Maybe he needs a sexy princess to kiss him and wake him up?" CG asked.

"NO! That's MY job, and just because I have small boobs does not mean she can wake him up!" To prove her point, she proceeded to cross her arms, which had the probably undesired effect of making her breasts look even smaller.

^^No need to worry, KG, He loves you and only you,^^ Tinsey said, as she passed by, still carrying a severed head.

"CRAP," came a far-away high-pitched shout, as a synapse finally fired in Aimee's head. "GIVE THAT BACK!"

You may be curious as to why a slightly off-kilter young girl would want a severed head.

If you are, this might be the wrong story for you.

"They're gonna kill me!" Aimee exclaimed, as she ran after the nurse, puffing between each syllable. Unfortunately, as Tinsey disappeared into a crowd, Aimee realized something difficult. "Damnit, all these nurses look the same!"

One of the Tinseys turned up and looked at the winded girl. "Tinsey?"

"Uh... I'm looking for... person who looks like you. Carrying a head?" Aimee asked. Tinsey could understand her perfectly, of course, but Aimee had no way of realizing this.

Therefore, when Tinsey replied only "Tinsey," Aimee attempted a foreign language.

"Marklar? Marklar marklar with a marklar?"

^^Marklar?^^ Tinsey exclaimed.

"SHIT!... uh... yo... usted... uh... head," Aimee tried, this time in broken Spanish. Giving up, she screamed as loudly and slowly as she could, "Just tell me where the god damned head is!"

Tinsey chuckled slightly, then pointed to a side room; and out from the room, walked traP, having returned to the living. "Tinsey," Tinsey concluded, and walked away.

"Back to the ship, Aimee," traP barked. In the midst of this sentence, a cigarette butt flew out of his mouth. "ugh.."

"God, you try to help your brother and niece, and does anyone ever bother to thank you? Oh, nooooooooo, of course not!" Aimee muttered, as she returned to the ship.

Tinsey (and at this point, which Tinsey it was seems unimportant) came around, and handed traP some medication, which traP accepted with a slight smirk.

=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

In the beginning, everyone was immortal.

This caused no end of troubles; not least of which was the fact that these immortals continued to have children, and family nomenclature became horrifyingly muddled. It was, for example, possible for your great great great aunt to be younger than your great great great grandchild.

"This was intolerable," announced the overburdened genealogists. "We must do something."

It turns out that the genealogists were quite good friends with the mad scientists. And they were ready to provide a solution.

The virus.

It was wildly successful, as the death rate hit 30% in the first year. The new mortician industry was stimulating the economy.

Unfortunately, it was quickly evident, as the death rate in the second year hit 49.3%, that perhaps the solution was too perfect.

People began to use various things in their environment, therefore, in an attempt to cure the plague. Tree branches, leeches, and lead pills were the first things tried, and although they invariably failed to do any good, the people who began to learn to use these items gained much respect and admiration, and came to call themselves Doctors.

As time went on, these doctors tried more and more unlikely things in an attempt to keep the respect of their peers. Amputation became a common practice, even if it wasn't necessary. Especially if it wasn't necessary, in fact; having a missing limb became a badge of honor.

Eventually, doctors figured out the solution to their own dilemma; narcotics. It didn't matter if they actually cured anything, as long as the patients could be doped up beyond caring. And all was again, if not right, then at least convincingly and definitively wrong, with the cosmos.

The lesson: Drugs good, immortality bad.

=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

It had been a rather quiet few moments, aside from blonde airheads screaming their heads off of course. This made the event that occurred next simply inevitable.

"Snor!" came a sound from around the corner. And it most assuredly wasn't from KGJ this time.

"Cartman?" CG asked. "My baby!"

The girl leapt up, and attempted to hug the enormous juvenile Snorlax. What cosmic coincidence had led to this particular being being named Cartman is unknown, however the resemblance was uncanny.

Well, except for the fact that a Snorlax is nearly seven feet tall, and manages a bulk of half a ton... I take that back, the resemblance WAS uncanny.

In any case, CG's hug completed, she turned her attentions back to KG and KGJ.

It is said that, beasts of this size are unable to stay awake except for when they are eating. Cartman was the rule that negated any exceptions, in this case, and he immediately moved to enjoy a nice ham sandwich.

Ashley, however, didn't appear too happy about being plucked out of the mud, and being held over Cartman's enormous mouth.

=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

While this was going on, KG was struggling to move her bed closer to KGJ's. "Damnit this thing is heavy," she muttered, as she struggled to move herself without the use of legs.

CG noted this, and decided, since she was the closest thing present to a healthy person (being injured only in the sanity department... and considering the company she was keeping, this was not an injury, when relative terms were considered.), she assisted KG by shoving her stretcher parallel with KGJ's.

"Thanks," KG said, then grabbed her boyfriend's head. (Not THAT one, you sick-minded fools) "Hey, wake up" she said softly.

KGJ stirred slightly, but made no noise that could strictly be defined as language. This was unsurprising, given that he still had a sock in his mouth.

=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

Cartman had managed to get the squirming Ashley inside his mouth, despite her attempts to spread herself as wide as possible and grab at four points in the enormous beast's mouth.

Finally, Ashley had slipped, and Cartman closed his mouth contentedly.

Inside Cartman's mouth, Ashley held for dear life to Cartman's tongue. Unfortunately, she slipped, and slid down to his tonsils.

=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

What happened next, interestingly, was purely instinctual, and appears to have been inherited directly from the very first living cell that ever came into existence in the universe.

This bacteria, quite frankly, was quite bored. Being alone in the universe is great for the first few million years, but eventually one grows weary, since there is no one dumber than you to laugh at.

So, the bacteria decided it was finally time to have children. And being a bacteria, it was able to accomplish this task asexually, dividing a part of itself off to become a whole new, second cell in the universe. It was, however, quite painful to give birth (we can all blame that ancient ancestor for this as well), and the parent cell stumbled around in pain for a few moments.

This child cell, of course, immediately noted a profound lack of food available, and began in due course to eat its parent. The parent, caught by surprise, promptly pissed itself, but since taste buds were not yet invented (and would not be invented, in fact, until at least another month had passed), this didn't seem to have any effect on the hungry child.

This story demonstrates five important points. One, that one should never have children, especially not hungry children. Two, that if one does decide to have children, it should never be done asexually, as this can have very bad side effects. Three, that if the bacteria had been smart, it would have simply killed itself, thus ending any hope for life in the universe; the universe would have been much happier this way, no doubt.

And most relevantly for the story, if you DO decide to eat someone else while they're still alive, you should expect them to piss themselves.

Of course, one ever accused a half-ton obese teddy bear of having common sense. At least not anyone who counted.

=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

Assuming a suddenly disgusted statement, Cartman spat Ashley out, and tried to get the taste out of his mouth. "SNOR!" he yelled, half-angry, half disgusted.

Ashley, surprised and relieved to be alive, giggled and stuck her tongue out at the Snorlax. It was her 9,813,475th mistake.

Cartman's anger and disgustedness turned immediately to rage (according to the seventh law of conservation of emotional state), and his eyes flashed a reddish color. "Snooooooooor..."

Ashley knew a threat when she heard it, and ran away as fast as her piggy legs could carry her.

=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

traP made his way back into the waiting room, and just as he rounded the corner, he popped one of the pills Tinsey had provided into his mouth.

The sight that greeted him was that of Ashley, running on all four legs, and squealing like a pig, and then being chased by the obese wonder of the world.

"Wow, this medication is strong stuff!", he said, contently, as the narcotics surged through his bloodstream.

=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

Ashley made her way into a conveniently located haystack.

I should clarify, the haystack itself was not conveniently located, except for from Ashley's perspective, since Cartman arrived soon afterwards, spat a fireball at the stack of hay, and then tossed the burning embers aside to pluck Ashley off the ground.

Indeed, for the hay itself, its location had been most inconvenient.

=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

"Enough of this," CG said to herself, then whacked KGJ with a pen. "Wake up!"

Just as this happened, traP arrived, he couldn't help but chuckle at KGJ's face, which still had the drawn smiley face on its nose. "Hey. You done yet?" he finally asked.

"No," KG said, sighing and shaking her head.

"He's still out," CG said, indicating the jedi, "and they're trying to fix KG by seeing what else is available besides switching bodies with Pamela Anderson."

"Pamela Anderson?! Wow, this hospital IS pretty good," traP said, visions of silicone-enhanced bombshells dancing in his head.

"I don't WANT to be anyone else!" KG whined. "Especially that blonde bimbo huge hootered bitch!"

"You could dye your hair back red afterwards," traP said, grinning.

"Then she can't be part of the Itty Bitty Titty Society," CG pointed out.

"I don't WANT people to start liking me for my body," KG said.

traP simply blinked, trying (and utterly failing) to understand the logic.

=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

Ashley was in quite a bad state after she escaped from Cartman, running for her life.

Cartman, for his part, however, was getting winded. Anything beyond walking to the fridge to eat the entire contents therein was considered exercise in his book.

And just like with his namesake, this was most strictly verboten to what served as a code of ethics.

So finally, despite still being able to see Ashley, Cartman gave up the chase, and decided to break into a nearby vending machine instead.

=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

The doctor reemerged, fatigued from research. ^^Well, here, we got an idea now. We can keep HALF your body, and half a new body. How's that?^^

"Whose body?" KG asked.

^^Anyones. Any body you choose you can have. It's a good bargain.^^

"Well, I... don't know who's body to pick," KG said.

^^Well here,^^ the doctor said, exasperated, and he handed over a folder containing thousands of options for KG to choose from.

=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

While this was going on, frustration with KGJ's lack of recovery was growing. Although attempts were made to awaken him via the use of used socks in the mouth, gentle shaking, rough shaking, and even being hit on the head with a pin, nothing had seemed to awaken him thus far.

Of course, in fact, several times he had come close to being awake in actuality, only to go unconscious due to the increasingly rough attempts being made to awaken him.

Finally, Tinsey decided it was time for the medical solution. Taking her huge needle from earlier, she injected her patient with a powerful stimulant.

"Yeowtch!" KGJ exclaimed, as the needle woke him up (the stimulant, as it turned out, had been extraneous.)

"Tinsey," Tinsey said smiling, and left. Another job well done.

"You're awake," KG exclaimed, which caused the doctor to be exasperated, as KG's attentions left the folder.

"oooooh," KGJ said, groaning in pain from the needle jab, a bad taste in his mouth, and an unexplained bump on his head. "I got two legs again?" he said, after he noticed ten toes wiggle.

"Yes you do, look!" KG said.

"Yeah! And you can walk right away too," CG added.

"Really?"

"Yup," CG replied, then began in an imitation of a Southern Baptist preacher. "Now WALK, my child! Get outta that stretchah! The Lord wants you to WALK!"

"Is that really necessary?" KGJ asked, as he swung his legs over the stretcher.

"Not really," CG admitted with a grin.

"Protestants piss mah off," traP muttered to himself.

"Quiet you," CG said, as she poked the recently deceased traP in the eye.

KGJ stood experimentally on his legs, and tried balancing himself, to the delight of those who were actually watching.

=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

Something was missing, traP realized. Something rather important, in fact. Searching his pockets, he discovered that he had in fact been robbed during his period of being dead.

"AY! Who stole my stuff?"

Zidachu glanced up, casually reading one of traP's magazines. "Zi?" Suddenly, he got wide eyed, and ran around a corner.

"Aw crap. Eh, he can have that one, I already read it. But...", he said examining his pockets, "it's not here!"

Zidachu, sniffing around the corner to be sure it was safe, poked back into view, and offered traP a Pokè-Porn magazine.

"Er... no offense, but I prefer humans," traP said, as he glanced at the CGlebi on the cover. "Or elves," he said, getting a slightly dreamy statement.

Zidachu grinned, and passed traP back his "Elves of the Month" magazine.

"Hubba hu...," traP exclaimed... he hadn't had a chance to "read" this month's issue yet after all. But, there was work to be done here. "Still, my personal doc is missing. I JUST had it yesterday! I made him prescribe me some medical mari.... er... heh."

"Zi?"

"My EMH," traP explained. "I mean, I can't leave a piece of 24th century technology just laying around like that! Who knows what kind of trouble someone could get into with it! I mean... they could cure diseases, or.... ok, so that wouldn't be so bad, but STILL!"

=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

"They could take over the world! Narf!", came a small voice from under the couch.

"Quiet, Pinky!", a second voice came. "Do you want to ruin our cover?"

"Poik! Oi, sorry Brain!"

=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

Ellie Palinor was frantic, as she searched her quarters for the 7th time. Her new ashtray was missing, and there'd be hell to pay. SOMEONE had to have taken it.

"Mierde," she muttered to herself, regretting having passed out. Still, a skull didn't just get up and walk away on it's own.

"Kids, get your asses over here, right now," came traP's voice over the Falcon's PA system. Followed shortly by Dylan's "Ellie, was that whom I thought it was?"

Ellie hit a button on the wall to activate her own microphone. "Aims be dead." At least this explained her own mystery, she decided with a shrug, as she exited, turning her walkman to full blast to drown out the expected lecture.

=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

"Did you have to yell into the communicator so loud," Ashley complained. It had been, after all, her communicator traP had used. The one that was hooked up right next to Ashley's ears, unfortunately for her.

"Sorry, Ash, but I'm pissed right hyah. They know better than to leave me headless for over a day."

"You were headless?" Ashley asked, blinking.

"Cat ate my head," traP explained. Ashley blinked again. "I got better," he finished, in his best Monty Python imitation (which still wasn't good enough to be recognized.)

Dylan and Ellie arrived, both not happy. "Hand it over," traP barked.

"Hand what over?"

"This," Ellie said, sighing, as she handed her walkman over. "He inside, cabron."

=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

^^Come on, pick already ma'am,^^ the doctor said, frustratedly.

"I'm still looking!" KG retorted, picking the folder back up.

"Pick what?" KGJ asked.

"She's got to have her lower part cut off and replaced with a new one," CG explained.

"Aww shit," KGJ replied.

"CUT OFF?" KG squealed. She hadn't expected THAT to be the way.

Nearby, traP shook the walkman upside-down for a moment, before finally getting the batteries out. "I know one of you is my EMH! Activate program."

=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

The Emergency Medical Hologram, known as EMH, is one of the most peculiar technologies ever invented. Except that, strictly speaking, it hasn't been invented yet, and won't be until the late 24th century. Furthermore, the capacity for independent operation is based on 29th century, by which time the 24th century model EMH should be obsolete anyway.

The great threat time-travel presents (when it is invented in the mid 23rd century) is the potential to raid the future for invention ideas, and then invent them in the past. On the only world where this has happened in full scale to date, Sephiron IX, this was a disaster; eventually, Nuclear weapons were 'invented' in their planet's stone age, and were therefore used to hunt wooly cockroaches.

In any case, the EMH was designed to be superior in every way to a human doctor. It had the bedside manner of a third world dictator, the capacity for emotional sympathy of a jackal, the smugness of an idiot, and was more expensive than the southern hemisphere.

So, in this, it WAS a drastic improvement over the human doctor.

=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

"What is the nature of the," the EMH began, before correcting itself. "...my programming, thou art blessed! A real hospital at last!"

"Hey, the med droid's awake," KGJ said, glancing up.

"What sort of medical practitioner are you?" the EMH asked.

^^An alien one,^^ the doctor replied, flustered.

"Obviously," the EMH replied smugly. "What is your diagnosis?"

^^Why should I answer to you?^^

"Because I am programmed with the complete medical knowledge of over 4 million doctors," the EMH replied coolly, omitting the fact that 3.8 million of those doctors were quacks, and the rest were complete fakes.

^^Get out of here!^^ the doctor replied, not amused.

=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

"Well, can you help me pick out some legs?" KG asked KGJ, distracting him from the ongoing doctor fight.

"New legs? Why, is she here for cosmetic surgery?" the EMH interrupted.

"No," KG explained. "I got crushed. I would prefer my old legs, but..."

"I see," the EMH replied, interrupting. "And this idiot thinks half body replacement is the answer?" He faced the red-faced doctor. "Have you never heard of cloning?"

He adjusted his holomatrix, which is just a fancy way of saying he changed his own size and shape, to produce a chalkboard. "A cloning followed by a brain transplant would result in the patient retaining the same personality, and the same body genetically and physically."

"Aren't brain transplants impossible," KG protested.

"Not in the 24th century they're not."

"We aren't IN the 24th century," CG pointed out.

"I'm from there, I can teach you," the EMH said, annoyed. How dare the patients presume to know what's best for themselves?

"Well... ok... is it going to hurt?" KG asked, finally after a moment of silence.

"That depends on the anesthetic they have available," the EMH said.

"Anesthetic, you do NOT want to meet," CG said, taking a deep breath. On cue, Dionypuff walked around the corner, taking a sip of coffee.

"Ok, lets just get this over with," KG said, resignedly sighing.

"Draw 3 ccs of stem cells and prepare a cloning pod," the EMH ordered Tinsey, completely ignoring the official doctor, whom by now had grown so annoyed that he left to make his 4:30 tee time.

=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

As the residents of the state of California (as it was named) on the puny planet of Earth can tell you, power is not free. It is, in fact, quite difficult to procure sometimes.

This was most horrifyingly demonstrated on the planet of T'jxt. Cursed with both a power shortage and a vowel shortage, their Prsdnt Jhn Rms ordered his troops, the dreaded Mrns, to invade their power-rich (and vowel-rich) neighbors, the planet Ooaiee. The war against the well defended Oeieu lasted a hundred years, cost billions of lives, and perhaps worst of all, by the end of the war (which the T'jxt eventually won), all of the power on Ooaiee had been thrown into the war effort, leaving T'jxt with no spoils except some leftover vowels.

Of course, the T'jxt government declared that the war had been successful, even though now they had even less power than they had before the war, and claimed credit, as they were finally able to give their children pronounceable names. The side effect of the lack of power had, of course, been an increase in the number of children requiring such names.

=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

As the hospital staff scrambled to comply with the EMH's orders, a storm was brewing nearby.

"Did he draw on me?" KGJ asked, pointedly, when he noticed Dionypuff was laughing at him.

KG glanced up, and before she could answer KGJ spoke again. "I have a dick on my face, don't I?!"

Dionypuff grabbed a scalpel and swiped at his leg, which started a melee. Immediately, Tinsey rushed over to disarm Dionypuff and fix the wound in KGJ's repaired leg. However, one of KGJ's dragons, in the effort to defend his master, decided to take decisive action, blasting a hyperbeam at Dionypuff.

Dragons are not, however, well known for their aim in tight quarters. The beam glanced off Dionypuff, but the cloning machine took the full brunt of the blast, and it stood smoldering in the side passageway.

"I'm screwed, methinks," KG said, sighing, as she looked over the carnage; Dionypuff lay unconscious on the floor, the cloning machine damaged beyond repair. At least the EMH still worked.

"It would be so nice to have a competent medi... s...shit," the EMH said, on cue, as it's power ran out.

This was too much to handle. "I'm going to die!" KG exclaimed, wailing.

=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

In the chaos of the next few moments, several important facts emerged:

One was that, because they had so many nice flashing lights and looked impressive to patients, the hospital had recently acquired a second cloning device, and that one was safe on an upper floor, still working.

Second was that the EMH was seriously damaged, and would need some repairs to function.

Third was that the pizza was ready, which was good because those who intended to survive this story were by now quite hungry.

=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

Dylan sat in the engine bay of the Falcon, donning an oversized set of jeweler's goggles, attempting to repair the EMH.

"This is impossible," he muttered to himself.

"Perhaps I can be of assistance, Master Dylan?" The voice of the annoying droid, See-3-POed, who had been on the ship when it was initially stolen, and introduced much of the crew to the pleasures of blue wine, sang out in it's electronic whining.

Dylan glanced up at the droid in frustration. "Not unless you can repair the programming of a damaged 29th century holographic entity."

"Of course I can, sir. 29th century duotronic patois is like a second language to me."

"Uh huh," Dylan replied skeptically, as he connected the tiny leads that would connect the EMH to the ship's systems. "Check the active memory for corruption, then."

Indeed, 3POed would do exactly that. And if there wasn't sufficient corruption, it would, of course, have to be added.

=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

Tinsey and KGJ entered the operating room together, with Tinsey pushing KG's stretcher into position by the cloning pod, while KGJ donned the surgical gear.

After everything was in position, Tinsey pointed KGJ over to a panel of buttons.

"Which ones do I press?"

Tinsey smirked, and pointed to a large, red, shiny button. The one that said, obviously enough, "CLONE" on it.

"Duurrrrrr," KGJ scolded himself, and then pressed the button.

=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

Cloning is, of course, a relatively new practice, designed to propagate very specific errors. This is how it differs from natural reproduction, which is designed to propagate very general errors. Rather than producing a new member of a flawed species at random, one intentionally duplicates an existing person, and then proceeds to do rather unethical things to it.

The Terakians had an interesting use for cloning. They would produce a clone of themselves, whom would then be sent to go to school or to work in place of the original model. However, ultimately, the clones would get the same idea, and clone themselves to the same purpose. This had rather interesting results, as the number of clones multiplied exponentially. Eventually, every person on the planet was from just one original person, and of these people, only one (the newest clone) went to work. His job, he decided, was to stimulate the planet's now horrible economy; and to do this, he opted to remove the burden that the non-working were placing on it. The entire population of slackers was summarily shipped off to be shot into a black hole. It was probably the smartest thing that ever occurred on the planet Terak.

=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

With a ding, the cloning machine opened up, and out came an identical copy of KG, which Tinsey immediately tagged in order to identify the clone. KG gasped, having never quite seen herself in this way before.

"...now what do I do?" she asked.

"Just chill, everything's going fine," KGJ said, doing his best to sound confident.

"Tinsey!" agreed the nurse, as she rolled the clone into the neighboring room. She returned a moment later, and wheeled the original KG into the same room, this time KGJ following the nurse and patient.

Both KGs were laid onto a metal table, and Tinsey proceeded to place a welder's shield over her face, before pulling a large laser out.

"What are we doing now?!" KG (the original) asked, horrified

"Shouldn't she be unconscious for this?!" KGJ asked.

"Tinsey," Tinsey said, shrugging and pointing to Dionypuff, who was still knocked out.

"There's NO way you're going to cut me open without being knocked out!" KG protested.

"Isn't there anything you can do?"

Tinsey thought for a moment, then pulled the big needle out. "Tinsey!"

traP poked his head in briefly. "You know, I just watched a news report on the horrors of anesthetics. Seems sometimes they don't give you enough to not feel anything, but you get just enough that you can't move enough to yell and scream at them to stop," he said, rather helpfully.

Everyone in the room except Tinsey proceeded to stare at traP in horror. "What? I'm just making smalltalk," he said.

From the bed in the corner, a weak "Diony" was heard.

=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

Ashley was quite bored, having not caused any senseless destruction or consumed any sugar in at least five minutes; an eternity, no doubt. To combat this, Ashley chose a rather unconventional approach; she decided to dance on the pool table.

The pool table, however, seemed to have other ideas; as soon as Ashley approached the table, it ran off, panicked.

"Ay, you're supposed to stay still!" she yelled, as she chased the table down the hallway.

The table didn't seem to agree, as it rounded a corner and dashed up a stairway, bowling over the original doctor who had gone back to his office for his golf clubs. Adding insult to injury, or more appropriately, injury to insult, Ashley didn't even notice as she trampled the doctor during her mad chase.

Finally, Ashley made it atop the table, and began to dance on the still- moving piece of furniture, removing her shirt (and therefore getting traP's attention out of the operating room as she passed by.)

"Damn, this place is interesting," traP muttered as he watched Ash's impromptu dance. "Next time I die, I'm definitely coming back here."

=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

Dionypuff had indeed re-awakened, but now was in some sort of argument with Tinsey.

"Dionypuff! Dionypuff!"

"Tinsey, Tinsey, Tinsey!"

"Dionypuff!"

"Tinsey!!"

"Dionypuff!" This last was accompanied by Dionypuff grabbing the needle and waving it at Tinsey.

"Tinsey!"

Having seen enough, KGJ grabbed the needle out of Dionypuff's hands using the force.

"Di?"

THUMP.

=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

Generally speaking, most sane creatures don't react rather well to things they cannot explain logically. Seeing, for example, a table run down a hallway on it's own volition, or a needle fly through the air ignoring gravity as if it were merely a speed limit law intended to be freely violated, they have a wide variety of reactions.

One can question the event, disbelieving what they have seen. This is the safest method, of course, as it uses the mind's power to disbelieve something, and therefore to cause it not to exist.

One can also react with demands for information. To study a phenomena, if it is studied enough, it fails to be a phenomena any more. Careful scientific study is excellent at destroying the mystery of the universe, and therefore rendering it mundane.

Or, like Tinsey, one can simply pass out in shock.

=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

With the nurse taken out of commission, it seemed to become even more imperative that the EMH be functioning correctly. It was at this point that Tweek (who was of course, actually always here, but due to some coincidence hadn't yet been mentioned in the story) grabbed traP away from visually inspecting the still-dancing Ashley.

"We had better fix the doctor," he insisted, dragging traP away.

"Oh... oh yeah."

Upon arriving back at the ship, the EMH was handed over, fully repaired. Unfortunately, there was a new problem.

"Still have to charge the batteries," Dylan said, grunting. And it had started out such a nice day, too...

"Right," traP said, plugging the EMH into the ship's auxiliary power port. "Come on, you flying trashcan, power up."

"I think the batteries are dead?" Tweek said, pointing at an indicator.

"How could that be?"

"I think somebody is cooking a huge pie in the microwave."

"Aw, damnit! Who would be doing that at a time like.... KAT!"

=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

Unfortunately, with the nurse out of commission, only the anesthetic, the patient, and the impatient boyfriend remained.

"Diony?" Dionypuff asked, handing KGJ the laser that had been in Tinsey's hands.

"Thanks," KGJ said skeptically, as he looked at the gun.

"Diony!" replied the Parkèmon, as he held up the user's manual for the laser, entitled "Laser Surgery for Dummies," as CG entered the observation room nearby.

"Better to go with something I know, I think," KGJ said after a moment's frustration. Tossing the laser aside, he pulled his lightsabre.

Unfortunately, and largely coincidentally, the laser had fallen in just such a way that it fired. The beam seared through the air, bounced off a reflective surface, and struck Tinsey, dead center in the chest.

"Oh my god, you killed Tinsey!" CG exclaimed.

"You bastards," came Tweek's voice over the intercom.

"Oh... shit!" KGJ said, slumping.

=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

"You can always tell when someone is truly innocent," it is said on Ramseys VII, "By how guilty they behave." The guilty rarely will attempt to act guilty (except for on Ranseys VII, because this fact is so well known there); rather, throughout the universe, the guilty will attempt to act innocent, often whistling as if to emphasize their innocence.

Whistling, on Ramseys VII, is considered proof of guilt and is a capital offense.

The truly innocent, on the other hand, show guilty remorse when they perform a heinous act purely by accident. For many years, this discovery led Ranseys VII to be at the forefront of the criminal justice system, as they lowered their rate of execution of truly innocent people to a mere 80%, a record low for anywhere in the universe, except for Texas, where (in the words of their former governor), "they must have been guilty of something, by golly!"

Even Texans were smart enough to get rid of that guy, sending him on a one- way trip to Washington D.C...

Unfortunately, the criminals eventually caught on, stopped whistling innocently when they did something wrong, and instead pretended to be remorseful. The chaos this caused on Ramseys VII eventually caused their civilization to fall. But that was only a very small loss.

=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

Kat glanced up as she poked her head into the central bay of the Falcon. "Hi!"

"Are you using the microwave to bake pies?" traP asked.

"Nooooo," Kat said, as she turned around, and began to whistle innocently.

"Damn! Then who else could it.... HEY, don't lie to me!"

"It's MY pie," Kat said, grinning.

"Damn. We need more power, Mister Tweek!" traP said, in his best James T. Kirk impression.

"Could we modify the engine to run on pie? It might just save us," Tweek asked.

"I'd live in the engine!" Kat said, liking this idea.

"Yes, you probably would," Tweek agreed.

"I like sugar," Kat said, giggling madly.

PING! traP dashed out of the room quickly, and when he returned, he had brought exercise equipment and Kat's pie from the microwave. "So, you'd love this pie then, right?" he asked.

"YES!" Kat squealed, bouncing up and down like a rubber ball.

"All you have to do is run to the end of this thing then," he said, indicating the treadmill, "and it's yours!"

Kat didn't need a second invitation, and she leapt onto the treadmill, running her little legs out.

"Good thinking traP" Tweek said, as traP hooked some wires up between the treadmill and the ship's battery.

"Thanks," traP said, smirking slightly. It had, after all, really been Tweek's idea to run the ship off of pie power.

=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

KGJ stood, dumbfounded, as Tinsey lay unmoving on the cold tile floor, lightsabre still in hand.

"Aw shit," he muttered, as if this would emphasize his earlier use of the same explictive. Now who would perform the operation on KG?

Dionypuff stood, in complete mindnumbing shock at first. Then, he ran over to Tinsey, and began to clutch her corpse protectively, wailing. "Dionyyyyyyy!"

For a few moments, nothing punctured this scene, until KGJ noticed something odd. "Dude, check it out. His tears are glowing."

A few moments later, Tinsey batted her eyes, then opened them slowly. "tinsey?"

=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

You may be asking yourself just what happened back there.

According to legend, the tears of any member of the Pokèmon species, including their Parkèmon cousins, are sufficient and necessary to revive the dead. This is, of course, one of the previously mentioned things that, because they are inexplicable, cause random chaotic behavior to occur amongst those who witness such an event.

However, a far greater mystery remains to be solved. Why, if these tears are enough to bring the dead back, is a hospital necessary at all on such a world?

This can be explained rather simply, in fact, however. HMOs.

You see, several decades ago, the Pokèmon were toiling away at their employment. A great labor leader, Julian Pikachu, arose and led his brothers, cousins, nephews and nieces in a mass general strike, to protest their horrid working conditions. Namely, they were angry that they were born and bred solely to do combat with one another, and then casually tossed aside whenever a new, somehow shinier but not really better, species was discovered.

Well, management (which included Julian's sisters, and this is why they were not amongst those being led to strike) could not have this, and could not really yield on working conditions, but they decided they had better give the Pokèmon something. Preferably something useless to them. Julian's sisters approached this great leader, with the mention of the deal, and (of course) a briefcase full of Pokè-porn magazines.

And so, the Pokèmon General Hospital was constructed, even though the number of patients was virtually nil.

It is interesting to note the pattern of labor/management relations through the years, systems and dimensions; the fact that corrupt union leadership and greedy management screw labor is a universal constant. Its value was determined recently to be 94.27.

=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

As Tinsey got back to her feet, she took a moment to compose herself. After all, being dead is a quite difficult experience to recover from. It would take her a few seconds.

"Tinsey," she said, finally, holding her hand out.

"You... want my lightsabre?" KGJ asked.

"Tinsey," the nurse agreed, nodding.

"Well, you're the doc, doc," KGJ said after a moment, handing his jedi weapon over.

Dionypuff placed a set of earphones quietly over KG's ears, then moved off towards a side room.

"This is going to hurt," KG said worriedly, clutching KGJ's hand.

"It'll be ok," KGJ replied, trying his best not to sound as nervous as he felt.

Dionypuff's singing echoed only in KG's ears, as he sang into a microphone from a nearby room. KG looked around groggily, and replied "mmm... hope so..." before drifting off to sleep.

This was Tinsey's cue. She ignited the lightsabre, and for a moment a manic glow in her eyes surged through her, drunk briefly with power. "Tinsey," she said, catching herself, and straightening her uniform.

"You're sure you can do this, Tinsey?" KGJ asked, stroking the hair of his unconscious girlfriend.

"Tinsey," the nurse replied, pulling a diploma out.

KGJ glanced at the diploma quietly. It read, "Tinsey is certified as being qualified to cut things."

"Alright, I'm trusting you with her," he said.

"Tinsey!" the nurse replied, clutching the jedi weapon tensely, ready to strike.

=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

In the waiting room, Tweek and Ashley sat, awaiting word either way. Considering Ash was still topless from her earlier dance, and Tweek was drinking blue wine rather heavily, it's no great surprise what happened soon thereafter.

They began to shoot everything in sight.

You see, about this time, a rather rude patient walked by and attempted to grope Ashley. While she didn't seem to mind this, she did mind the fact that he was also intoxicated, and had opted to throw up on her.

Tweek, trying to be a gentleman about this, decided this would be a good time for a chivalrous gesture, such as pulling out one of his many hand- blasters, and firing it at the drunk. This was a new, shiny toy from Ashley's perspective, and she demanded one of her own, which Tweek the weapons and alcohol smuggler, had plenty of.

So after a brief escalation of caliber, Ashley and Tweek sat in the waiting room, merrily shooting anything that moved. And if nothing moved, they'd shoot it until it moved.

=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

SLASH! SLASH!

The glowing jedi weapon flew through the air swiftly, cleaving both KG and her clone in half right at the waistline.

"Whoa!" KGJ said. "That was quick!"

"Tinsey," the nurse replied, tossing the weapon to the side (after deactivating it), and moving the tables around so that KG's upper half was now right next to her clone's lower section.

"Anything I can do?" KGJ asked, after a moment.

"Tinsey," the nurse replied, nodding and indicating her forehead.

"No problem," KGJ replied, wiping the sweat from the nurse's forehead with a nearby towel.

"Tinsey," the nurse muttered, as she began to attach the intestines, backbone, and other assorted body components at the cut point. It occurred to her how stupid it was that human bodies were so complicated, as she muttered under her breath.

It wasn't long, however, before the entire cut was sealed, and after stitching the body parts together, a long bandage was wrapped around the cut to hold the work together.

=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

As KG began to wake up, Tinsey proceeded to perform the necessary sanitary tasks for post operation. First, of course, she cleaned the scalpel, even though she had not actually used it. The needle was similarly cleaned, even though she had used it. The leftover body parts were then marked "Hazardous waste," and then flushed down the toilet to contaminate the local water supply.

Dionypuff re-emerged from the side room, and tapped Tinsey on the shoulder. "Diony."

"Tinsey?"

"Dionyyy..." came the reply, along with a bunch of flowers. The flowers had, actually, been "borrowed" from one of the patient's rooms, but no one would probably notice.

"Tinnnnsssey!" SMOOCH, came the peck on Diony's cheek.

"Tinsey..." came the somewhat surprised reaction as Dionypuff swooned.

=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

As traP returned with the now fully charged EMH, he ran into what might have been an amusing scene. Ashley and Tweek had merrily managed to blast several large holes in the nearby walls, causing general mayhem.

Of course, it would have been much more enjoyable if Ashley hadn't decided to try trigger practice. Setting several cans of pop on a nearby wall, she took careful aim, and squeezed the trigger.

She hit traP's kneecap, a good 40 meters away.

"PANCAKE," traP screamed. Why it had been that particular word may never be known, but it was definitely a cry of pain. He backed around a corner, and tried to activate the EMH.

"Careful there Ash, you might hit someone who matters next time," Tweek cautioned.

Ashley started giggling madly, then yelled out, "Sorry traP!" It was about this time that the first sirens were heard outside.

=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

KG opened her eyes slowly, after Tinsey injected her with a mild stimulant to wake her up. "Mmmmm?" "KG?" KGJ asked

"yeah?" KG replied, still groggy.

"You're ok now."

"I am?"

"Good as new."

"You mean I can just get up?"

"I think so. Give it a try."

"ok," KG said, swinging her legs over the operating room table cautiously, skeptical that her body would now behave.

=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

Tinsey was prepared to motivate KG. Reaching into her pouch, she withdrew a slice of pie, and held it up, just out of KG's reach.

"oooh!" KG said, reaching for it.

"Take it slowly," KGJ insisted.

"Ok," KG agreed reluctantly, as some soreness reached her nervous system.

Just as KG was about to reach the pie, however, Tinsey smirked a little, and took two large steps backwards.

"You're not supposed to move!" KG protested. Tinsey just laughed, and kept moving away, which caused KG to narrow her eyes, and then leap through the air to snatch the pie.

At least, that was the plan.

The reality was that KG, in her effort, tripped over her own feet, and would have fallen to the floor had KGJ not had a solid grip on her.

Good enough for now, however, was the determination, as Tinsey returned with the pie. KG sat down and began to eat what has to qualify as the first edible hospital food in history.

=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

An odd red glow emanated from the EMH as it activated, which was probably a side effect of having been recharged via the power of pie.

"Oh, you've gone insane," the EMH said, smugly. "I'm a doctor, not a psychiatrist."

"Funny," traP said. Or rather, he intended to say. What actually emerged was "Venus."

Pulling his medical tricorder out, the EMH frowned. "Hmm, whoever hooked your speech center back up forgot to clean your brain out before activating it," he said, reaching his holographic hand inside with a grimace. "Try now."

"Great, doc. This is seriously pissing me dinosaur," traP replied. "But it's my knee that's yukon."

The EMH frowned, and twisted slightly. "Ok, that should do it," he said, as he began to work on the bloody knee. "Would you seriously mind not getting seriously wounded every five minutes?"

"What, and run you out of a job?" traP replied smugly.

=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

"I think we had better get out of here," KGJ said, glancing out the window. Already, several squad cars had appeared, as well as a couple new ventilation holes caused by Ashley's aim and Tweek's ammo. "Wanna see if we can get to the ship without being killed?"

"Sounds like a plan," KG replied, smiling.

Tinsey nodded. "Tinsey!"

traP poked his head in to the OR. "You're not leaving me on this crazy planet either," he said, after a moment. The EMH entered behind him, doing a quick scan on Tinsey's work, although it wasn't needed.

"No probs. Lets make tracks!" KGJ said.

=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

The EMH was safely deactivated, and stuck in traP's pockets, as he and KGJ carried KG on a stretcher towards the ship. Tinsey and Dionypuff followed closely behind, as the group approached the most dangerous area... 40 meters to the left of where Ashley was aiming.

"Don't look to your left or your right. You can't do anything for them now," traP warned, as CG approached.

"How insane is it there?" KGJ asked, clutching his lightsabre.

"Insane," CG replied.

"Pretty damn bad," traP agreed.

"Will our lives be at stake?"

"Not really," CG started.

traP nodded. "As long as they aim at us, there's no way they'll hit."

"Ok then, everyone accounted for? Kids? Pokèmon?"

A chorus of nods went around, until CG realized something. "Wait... where's Zidachu?"

"Shit," KGJ said, frowning. "We'll look for him after we get KG on the stretcher."

"Lets do it."

=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

"Lets do some target practice," Ashley said.

"Ok, first pick a target," Tweek said. To demonstrate, he fired several rounds at a police dog through a hole in the outer wall.

"Ok!" Ashley replied, and aimed for the door that our 'heroes' were behind.

"Careful there."

"I got it. I think I see a good target."

"Then take the shot."

"Okay!" Ashley replied, as she pulled the trigger, just as the door was opening.

CLICK!

"Damnit! I forgot ammo!"

"Idiot," Tweek replied teasingly. "Reload then take the shot."

=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

Like the last flight leaving Washington D.C. before the inauguration of Dubya, it was a panic scene. traP ran first, head down, arms protecting his head in a very futile manner, as he ran through the fire zone. KGJ shoved off, dodging the blasts as best he could, while pushing the stretcher behind the most solid objects he could find. CG stormed past next, followed closely by Tinsey and Dionypuff, all moving in a dead run.

Ashley fired a shot, blasting the hinge off the door.

"Good shot."

"Thanks!"

"Now finish it off."

"Okay!"

After a moment, Tweek noticed the stretcher move past a column. "What's under that blanket? It's moving, we should shoot it."

"Okay!"

=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

"I can't look back! Are we still being shot at?" KGJ asked.

"I'm not gonna stop to look, dude!" traP replied.

WHIZ, a blast sailed past, narrowly missing the trio.

KGJ reacted by rolling into a bush, while traP hit the dirt face-first.

=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

CG was not in the last scene, and for good reason. Sneaking behind Tweek and Ashley, she raised one of Tweek's blasters, and screamed primally. "DIIIIIIIIIIIIE!" she yelled, squeezing off two shots, injuring both trigger-happy lunatics.

"why'd you shoot us?" Tweek asked, surprised.

"How DARE you try to kill them?!"

"Nice shot, Janson!" KGJ yelled from the bush, now that the threat had seemingly ended. "Let's move." =-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

In the cockpit of the Falcon, traP, Dylan and Lily sat, getting the engines warmed up. Safely in the hull were the remainder of the kids, the Pokèmon, and the two new stow-aways Tinsey and Dionypuff; the latter of whom along with the EMH were tending to KG, who had also been loaded aboard.

Meanwhile, KGJ and CG searched the hospital for the missing Zidachu.

Ashley and Tweek, now injured, struggled to get to their feet. Tweek, the less injured, was hauling Ashley aboard.

In the kitchen, Kat and the Snorlax Cartman were busy making pies.

=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

"Shield levels?" traP called out

"Check," came Dylan's reply after a gauge check.

"Weapons?"

"Check," Lily said. She hadn't wanted to be helpful, but the sooner they got of THIS nutball planet, the better.

"Internal scanners."

"All crew aboard except KGJ, CG and Zidachu. Two stowaways."

"Ok, thr... wait... that includes Tweek and Ashley, right?"

"Yeah, why?"

"Damn!"

=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

Zidachu burst from the bushes, carrying a red rock in his mouth, as the Falcon's engines began to come to life. ^^I'm not staying here!^^ he muttered, as he dashed for the ship... and ran straight into KGJ and CG looking for him.

"You ok little guy?" KGJ asked.

"Zi!" came his reply, after he spat the rock out into his hands.

"Uhh... are there meant to be police outside?" CG asked, pulling her communicator out. "Guys?"

=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

"I can't make out what they're saying!" Dylan protested, as he tried listening into the police frequency.

"Get on the text only, brainiac," Lily replied, shaking her head a bit.

"Right," Dylan replied, a bit sheepishly. "Got it. Wanted for..."

=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

Back inside the hospital, CG listened to the sitrep.

"They figured out who pulled the alarm. AND we didn't pay our hospital bill," traP said.

"Not to mention the weapons violations, and the stolen spaceship." came Dylan's voice from the background.

"Then might I suggest we get the fuck outta here?" KGJ said after a moment.

"Good idea," agreed CG, as they made their way.

=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

"Hey, look, police!" Kat squealed, as she looked out the window at the cops, who were now setting up a barricade around the Falcon.

"Police?" Ash asked.

"Let's shoot them!" Tweek said.

"Okay," Ashley said, pulling out a bow and quiver of arrows. "Where are they?"

"There," Tweek replied, letting loose a volley from an assault rifle.

=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

The carnage outside was beginning to pile up by the time it went noticed in the cockpit.

"What the fuck is going on down there?" traP asked over the intercom, even though the answer was perfectly obvious.

"You can't leave without KGJ!" came KG's voice.

"I'm not leaving without them. Look, just get those idiots to quit shooting the cops, we're in enough trouble as is!"

=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

KGJ, CG and Zidachu poked their heads out the door, as the cops moved to pull their injured back out of the line of fire. Sharing a quiet nod, KGJ and CG broke into a dead run for the ship, just as its engines had reached liftoff power.

The ship began to move slightly by the time KGJ made it to the gangplank. CG followed half a second behind, carrying Zidachu in her arms. As KGJ clasped CG's arm, the ship began to move into the air, greeted by a hail of police bullets.

They had escaped.

=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

The backup cockpit crew descended, having set the autopilot, to greet the rest of the crew on their successful mission.

"Nice launch," came a comment from someone, but it was misinterpreted.

"Lunch? I'm starved," Dylan asked.

"I'm hungry too," Tweek said. "any Jar Jar stew left?"

"Or hooker surprise?" asked KGJ

Dylan was already a bit green beneath the gills, but the mention of what food the fools had on board was enough to send his stomach somersaulting.

And that was before the pilot decided to try tactical combat maneuvers.

=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

traP lurched the ship upwards, swinging it wildly though air traffic, and slamming the passengers around in the back.

"This is your captain speaking," traP said into the intercom calmly. "We'll be cruising at speed of 17 light years per hour, on this non stop flight back to Earth. We remind you that this is a non-smoking flight. This means you, Ellie. And thank you for flying escaped lunatic airways."

KGJ picked up the intercom, grinning. "What's the in-flight movie?"

"Airplane 2," traP replied.

"Yay!" KG said.

It was a jovial moment, until it was punctuated by two events; Dylan evacuating the contents of his stomach, narrowly having missed reaching the bathroom in time, and CG being pealed off the wall after having been pinned there by centrifugal forces, and then slammed hard back into the wall again by Cartman the Snorlax, and his insane bulk.

=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

It was, indeed, a beautiful day in space. The lack of illumination except from distant specs of light rendered a virtual kaleidoscope scene of the heavens.

The ship had not yet made the jump to hyperspace, which would destroy the view as the ship traveled faster than the light that composed the view. That jump would have to wait until the ship had cleared the gravitational influence of the twin stars of the Baka system. But it would be soon.

It's a common misconception that at light speed stars would streak by. In fact, other than the single star you aimed for, nothing else would be visible outside. It had been a surprise the first time this was experienced, but it made sense in retrospect, considering the local speed limit of 30,000 kilometers per second applied to the light itself, even if the ship and its passengers opted to risk a speeding ticket.

It was such a nice view for now, however, that the occupants of the ship failed initially to see that they were being followed.

=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

^^You are in violation of Penal Code section 420.69. Pull your starship over and prepare to be boarded,^^ came a loud booming voice over the ship- to-ship communications channel, shocking traP out of his brief siesta at the helm.

"Wha?" traP said, then picked up the speakers. "This is the Aluminum Falcon. We are on a diplomatic mission to Alderan!"

^^Hyeah, we've heard that one before,^^ came the reply. traP waited as the computer came back with the translation, then heaved a sigh.

"Battle stations. All hands to battle stations," he said, as he checked the aft scanners. "Thirty-six police vessels on intercept course, computer lists classification as T-6."

=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

The T-6 System Patrol vessel is, according to its manufacturer, "The ultimate high speed pursuit vessel." Equipped with a powerful tractor beam, quad pulse lasers, relativity-nullifying n-space ion drive thrusters, and of course, a wet-bar, the ship allows local police to enter into dangerous situations with a minimum of getting their hair mussed up.

Of course, these are just manufacturer's claims. The fact was, the T-6 had such a legendary reputation for brutal efficiency and power that, when just one of these was seen by most criminals, they surrendered immediately, unwilling to risk a fight with one of these. Only once before had anyone been stupid enough to try their luck against one.

No one on the Falcon had ever heard of a T-6. Needless to say, therefore, they had not heard of a full tactical wing of 36 T-6s.

=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

Inside the main level of the Falcon, personnel began scrambling.

CG made her way to Docking bay Beta, which held her personal craft, the Parents Must Die. Along with her, the stow-aways Tinsey and Dionypuff, Zidachu, and her Snorlax Cartman assumed the bridge positions, preparing for combat.

KGJ's personal dragons, Charizard and Dragonite, assumed the familiar top and bottom turbo-laser gunner posts, and began to swing the turrets around.

Throughout the ship, a bustle of activity began, as each person performed their assigned tasks, to make the Falcon most efficient in combat. For Matt and Nath, this meant manning the missile bay. For Kat and Aimee, the galley. For the Ewok Athena, it was serving as a messenger. For Ashley, Tweek and Ellie, it would be... staying out of the way.

But one unresolved question remained.

=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

"Damnit! To my X-wing," KG exclaimed, staggering to her feet.

"Are you sure that's a good idea in your condition?" KGJ asked, with a concerned tone.

"I have to do something," KG insisted, making her way to Docking bay Alpha.

"Well, if you're sure..."

"Don't worry about me, I'll be fine," she insisted.

KGJ nodded, although the concern on his face betrayed the confidence he tried to portray orally. "Good hunting," he said, as he made his way to the Falcon's cockpit.

=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

"This is Pie one, ready to launch," KG called out from the cockpit of her Incom X-wing, complete with its custom cherry pie paintjob.

"Pie one, you are clear to launch," the reply from traP came back. "Targets at 214 mark 86."

"Got it," KG said, punching the throttle, and sending her tiny snubfighter out into the vastness of space. =-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

KGJ assumed the co-pilot's seat in the cockpit, and immediately began to coordinate the Falcon's defense.

"Gunners, concentrate your fire in sector three," he called out. "Fighters, try to angle your fire towards the leaders."

As a bright flash lit the scene, traP called out "One down. Charizard got a hit."

"Thirty-five to go," KGJ replied, alternately looking at the computer display and the window.

=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

^^Pika three to Pika leader, I have three hostiles now on my scope.^^

^^Oh my god, they shot down Pika seven!^^

^^You bastards!^^

^^All fighters, come around and deploy tractor beams. Rope em in and take em down.^^

^^Roger that, leader.^^

=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

"I've got one on my tail," KG squealed.

"I've got it," CG announced. A moment later, the fighter plaguing KG vanished from the screen in a flash of night.

"Nice shooting AGAIN, Janson," KGJ called out over the radio.

"Looks like they're trying to sweep us together," traP muttered. The enemy fighters were still out of tractor range of the Falcon, but their shots were doing a number on the Falcon's jury-rigged shielding system. "We're down to 46% shields."

"Maintain firing. Range to escape?"

"50 thousand klicks."

"Damn."

=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

Unlike most of the passengers and crew, Dylan and Lily had no assigned task in combat. This was primarily because none of the older people trusted either one as far as they could throw them.

"We're going to die," Dylan said, matter of factly, as he looked up the T-6 specifications on a computer terminal.

"You say that as if it were a good thing," Lily replied, looking just a little nervous at the prospect herself.

"For them it is. For me, not so much."

"Well, what are we going to do about it?"

"Do? They don't trust us to DO anything. They're too scared we'll sabotage the ship."

"Not a bad idea for later. But dying with them doesn't seem like such a good idea right now."

"Well," Dylan replied, sighing. "I guess we could shunt some power to the main guns. "It should work, in theory."

"Put theory to practice then," Lily replied, grabbing a toolkit. "How long will it take?"

"Five minutes?" The ship rocked violently as the aft shields collapsed. "Let me guess, I have two."

Lily nodded. "Make them count. I'll help from down here."

"Counting to two isn't exactly a challenge. I'm not Kat you know."

"Ouch."

Dylan smirked a bit. At least if he died now, he'd managed to make his last words something of a zinger. =-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

KG's targeting display lit up red, as another police fightercraft was placed in her scope. Narrowing her eyes into slits, she smirked slightly and punched the trigger, activating Pie One's quad laser turrets for a coordinated blast.

"What?" she squealed, when the fighter took the hit, but didn't go boom. "That was a direct hit! You're supposed to blow up!"

"Bleep beep bleeep," her R2 unit, R2D69 replied.

"Shields? Damn!" KG said, squeezing the trigger again. This time, the now defenseless fighter did explode in a quite satisfactory pyrotechnical display.

"Yay!" she squealed. But her jubilance was short lived, as two enemy T-6s locked onto her from the side.

=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

"I don't know, shoot THAT one," CG said, sitting in the command chair of her cramped shuttle. "Well, THAT one then," she amended, as the initial target exploded under the barrage from KG's fighter.

"Tinsey," the nurse, now handling the scanners announced.

"Zid?", Zidachu inquired, still holding his glowing stone.

"Diony..."

"Snor! Snor!"

CG rolled her eyes. "Less chatter, more explosions!"

"I need help out here," KG squealed.

"Coming!" CG replied, as Zidachu entered the course change. "Shoot em, Cartman!"

"Snor!"

=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

"Ok, connect the blue cable to the green input port," Dylan's voice called from inside a tight tunnel in the engine bay.

Lily glanced down. There was a red cable, a green cable, and a white cable. Glancing up, she noticed there was a blue, green, and black input port. "He must have meant the green cable into the blue port," she decided, and started to make the connection.

"YEEEEEEEEEARRRRRGHHHH," Dylan's muffled scream echoed through the bay. As the ship lerched, a blue cable dropped down from the tunnel.

"oops," Lily muttered, disconnecting the errant connection.

=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

"We've lost power to our aft shields. Generator's out. And something's siphoning power off of the hyperdrive system," traP reported.

"How are our front shields?"

"Fully charged."

"No choice then. Turn around and we'll have to face them."

"We won't last long against those enemy starfighters," traP warned.

"We'll last a lot longer than we will against that death star!"

traP and KGJ blinked at each other briefly. "I think we're going too far, dude," traP said finally, as he turned the ship to face the incoming fighters.

"Hyeah," KGJ agreed. "Firing a full torpedo spread."

=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

"Scratch one more bogey," CG's voice called out over KG's radio.

"That leaves 27," KG replied. "We're doing really goo... ack, you got two on your tail!"

"Shit! I can't shake them."

"I'm on my way!"

=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

"Ok," a now nicely charred Dylan called down. "Blue goes in Pink. Pink goes in Black. FIRST do the Blue one."

"Yeah, yeah," Lily muttered under her breath, wondering how she had gotten herself roped into this one, as she plugged the blue wire into the pink slot.

=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

"We're losing front shields now," traP warned, as a full squadron of twelve fighters loomed ahead. "They're activating tractor beams."

Without warning, the Falcon's lights suddenly dimmed. When they reactivated a few seconds later, the laser blasts sailing from the top and bottom of the ship had changed from a dull green to an intense purple color.

"What the?"

"Dude! Look!"

Ahead, the fighters were now being picked off one by one, by the hyper- charged twin laser turrets.

=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

^^We're taking heavy losses out here!^^

^^All fighters, retreat. We'll put an APB out on that ship, let the Imperials deal with it.^^

^^But they're felons! They... they didn't pay their hospital bill!^^

^^They'll get theirs in the end, Pika 9. Bring em back to the barn.^^

=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

It had been twenty minutes since the Baka system patrol wing had fallen back, and the Falcon had retrieved its two snubfighters during that time.

The Falcon lerched into hyperspace for a short jump, just to make sure they weren't followed. It was an old smuggler's technique, but it would serve fugitives just as well.

In the recreation bay, traP now sat with the rest of the passengers and crew, enjoying a glass of blue wine. "All's well that ends well," he said, raising his glass for a toast, as the ship left hyperspace briefly.

"Look at that," Kat said, looking out the window as the stars reappeared. A shining golden planet floated nearby, looking almost close enough to touch.

"Hey," Dylan said, even he was impressed by the simple beauty of the small orb in space. That was, while it lasted. The planet suddenly exploded in a bright flash of violet light.

"...wha?"

"Hey, traP, did we forget to tell the Dragons to come down?" KGJ asked.

"And to turn power off to the main guns," traP said with a frown, as the dragons above chuckled.

"What planet was that anyway?"

"Oh, just the United Planets Headquarters, according to the computer," CG replied.

"Good riddance," the crew agreed, and returned to their blue wine.

=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

On the planet Jovis VII, lived a great poet. In fact, his poetry was so superb that people flocked to his doorstep to hear it being read aloud by the great master.

The impact to global culture, especially his proponancy of galactic peace and harmony, was quite legendary. As a matter of fact, he had won the J'zaq Peace Prize 15 years in a row. Actually, this was slightly problematic, because the runners-up for the prize every year were quite upset, and two of these had actually attempted to kill the great poet, in order to increase their chances of winning the prestigious award.

However, they had failed in their attempts, and Akom (for that was his name) continued spreading his message of acceptance, harmony, and all that good stuff.

Well, upon hearing his message by the leaders of the galaxy, who were normally entirely corrupt and untrustworthy, many of the planets in the contested thirteenth sector were completely disarmed, as a show of trust; Jovis VII, which lay on the edge of sector thirteen, was one of these. He was, in fact, so beloved, so influential, and so successful at bring peace where before there had only been war, that the new United Planets building was placed on Jovis VII, just so that the ambassadors from the various galactic powers could hear Akom's message, and act upon it. Of course, were he ever to be killed violently, the results could be tragic.

There was a point to this narrative, but the chronicler has briefly forgotten what it was.

=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-= FIN

Epilogue

It had been a good twenty minutes since Dylan had typed the last word of this work. He sat, pondering the words.

It was easily the most light-hearted work he had ever created.

It was definitely the longest.

It was most astoundingly not even influenced, like the original no doubt was, by the consumption of poorly cooked Asian cuisine.

"It's crap," Dylan announced to no one in particular, finally, as he hit the delete key.

=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

Amber Wereneck sat in her room, smirking to herself. She had actually managed to "borrow" one of Dylan's books, and it sat on her lap as she read it. She would return it, of course, but the information from that paranoid geek's library was invaluable to her own development as a secret agent.

The book was titled "Advanced Hacking Techniques." At the moment, Amber was enjoying a small chuckle at the handwritten margin notes the book's owner had added, on the possibility of breaking into government computers. "Their security is only marginally superior to mine," he had noted. Amber wondered briefly to herself if that was actually true.

Also sitting on her desk, amongst the myriad of partially completed and malfunctioning gadgets, was a small, beat up, bright blue laptop computer, which matched Amber's hair and complexion perfectly well.

And on that laptop, a download indicator flashed it's completion at 100% of the file $DELETED/story-sequel.txt It obediently made a small beep to announce this fact, which gathered Amber's attention.

"Ah, finally," she said to herself, with a contented smile, as she opened the file and began to read.