A/N Last month, I rediscovered A Bug's Life, and as per tradition (XD) I made an OC for it. And in addition, began forming the plot for a story with said OC. The story will go through ABL and beyond, like my Epic fanfic.
I don't own A Bug's Life or its characters; they are owned by Disney and Pixar. What I DO own are my OC, Kimberly, and any other characters that weren't in the movie.
The life of a grasshopper can be fairly simple. They are born, shed their skin until they are adults, eat grass, find mates, lay eggs, and die. However, life isn't always that simple. Not even for grasshoppers.
Kimberly never had too hard of a life. She started out like any normal grasshopper: she was born, shed her skin until she was an adult, and left her family to start her own life. She was an attractive yellow and light-orange grasshopper, with a slight tint of green. She had a thin face with large hazel eyes, orange claws and spikes, and black spots on her long legs. Her light-green antennae curled and hung above her face.
Kimberly was a peaceful soul. She rarely fought unless she needed to. That wasn't to say she was weak though. If she needed to fight, she could kick hard, and was would even scratch with her claws. But she usually fought to defend herself from insects and other grasshoppers, usually males.
She never thought on how she wanted the rest of her life to be. When she was young, she dreamt of finding her Prince Charming and raising children with him. But as she got older, those childish fantasies withered away from exposure to the real world. In the real world, Prince Charming was as good as nonexistent. In the real world, you were more than likely to find males you didn't even want to know than to find your future mate.
Despite her life starting normally, Kimberly ended up being a strange grasshopper. How many grasshoppers do you know who have no wings, live with ants, and works as the youngest princess's guardian?
It started when Kimberly flew onto a large island in the middle of a drying pond. The island had a giant tree in the middle, with one of its roots towering over an anthill. All of the aforementioned was on a small cliff, with a sort of beach off to the side. Grass littered around the tree, and there was a clover field as well. To bigger animals, it looked like a simple patch of clover; to insects, it was a beautiful forest.
Kimberly touched down on the island, smiling. It looked peaceful and beautiful. She decided she would stay for a little while, and then she would leave.
A gasp startled her. Turning towards the noise, she saw a lone blue ant. His eyes were wide with fright, his mouth dropped open, and a piece of grain lay at his feet. Neither insect said nor did anything. When Kimberly blinked, twitching her antennae slightly, the ant finally ran off, screaming, "Grasshopper! There's a grasshopper on the island!"
Kimberly cocked her head slightly in confusion. "What's wrong with grasshoppers?" She wondered out loud.
She soon got her answer when a small group of ants appeared, including the ant that had found her. Like said ant, their eyes and mouth were wide with fright. Kimberly stood still, wondering whether to stay frozen or take off, seeing as she wasn't welcome. Finally, one short, dusty-purple ant exclaimed, "Wait a minute! It's alone! And a female!"
The other ants muttered amongst themselves. Kimberly didn't know what to say or do. She took a cautious step back, wondering if the ants would attack now that they knew she was alone. However, she stepped in a small hole and fell back, exclaiming in surprise.
All at once, the ants grabbed her. They pulled her to the ant hill, ignoring her as she yelled, "What are you doing? What is going on?"
They tied her up with thin grass stems and dropped her none-too-gently. "Why are you here?" The ant from before scowled. "And why so early? It's barely spring!"
"You know what I'm talking about! Why are you here?! Were you sent by Hopper to spy on us?"
"H-Hopper? Who's that?" Kimberly asked, feeling scared and vulnerable now that she was tied up.
"Don't play stupid!" An older ant yelled, smacking her on the head with a walking stick. Apparently now that Kimberly was tied up, the ants felt braver. "We know you're part of Hopper's gang! Why are you here?"
"I don't know who Hopper is! I mean no harm!"
"She's not cracking." The other ant said. "Someone get me a sharp stone. And turn her over."
While an ant left to get a stone, the ants turned Kimberly onto her side. "Get both of her wings out." The ant continued. "But don't let her go!"
As soon as the ant that left came back, Kimberly's wings—her hardened pair and her membrane pair—were both out of her binds. The ant had a long, slim, sharp piece of stone. "Grab her wings." The lead ant said. "Pull the hardened wings back as far as you can. I want her membrane wings!"
The ants did as he ordered, and pulled her hardened wings back. Kimberly groaned in pain. "Last chance, Grasshopper." The lead ant said, gripping both of her membrane wings in one hand, and holding the stone up above his head in the other. "Why has Hopper sent you here? Is he coming early?"
"I don't know Hopper!" She cried. She screamed in pain as the stone sliced her membrane wings clean off. Only two stumps were left. Tears fell down her face as she writhed in pain, causing her binds to slip. She hardly noticed this, or the ants backing away, realizing she was free.
"What is going on here?" An elderly female voice yelled. "What is this?"
"A grasshopper, your highness." The lead ant said. "She was obviously sent here by Hopper, but she was playing dumb."
"She doesn't look anything like Hopper or his gang. And have you ever seen a female with them? She probably doesn't know Hopper at all, and you've permanently injured an innocent insect."
The ants fell silent. Kimberly had barely paid attention as she rolled onto her front, still crying in pain. She gasped in fright when she saw a purple elderly female ant standing in front of her. She wore a large crown made from a light-purple flower. Next to her was a younger purple ant, wearing a tiara made of small leaves. The younger female looked frightened, though the elder one looked unafraid. "Do you know Hopper, my dear?" She asked gently.
"I don't know him at all!" Kimberly sniffled. "I just flew here, minding my own business, and was viciously attacked! Now, because of those ants, I can't fly anymore! I can't leave the island!"
"I'm very sorry. You see, we're enslaved by a gang of grasshoppers, so it makes us wary of any and all grasshoppers." The elderly ant crouched on one knee. "What is your name, child?"
"K-Kimberly, your highness." She answered, remembering that the other ants referred to her as royalty. It was no use angering them further.
"Again, I apologize for the incident, Kimberly. I'm afraid my council acted on fright and impulse." She stood up and frowned at the group of ants. "You've critically and permanently injured an innocent insect. Shame on you! Apologize to her at once."
The ants mumbled apologies, not looking very sorry at all. Kimberly gingerly stood up, hissing in pain as her wings involuntarily twitched. "Thank you, but apologies won't bring back my wings."
"I'm afraid not." The queen shook her head. "The least we can do is to help heal your remaining wings."
"What?!" A female ant exclaimed until the queen frowned at her sternly. She sighed, "Yes, your highness."
"Come with me, my dear." The queen said kindly.
"Won't the other ants object?" Kimberly asked.
"If they see you with me, they won't hurt you. I promise."
Swallowing nervously, she followed the queen to the anthill. The other ants followed, giving the grasshopper a wide berth. The other ants at the anthill gaped at the grasshopper, but left her alone.
Kimberly was led down the anthill and across a few roots into a room lit with mushrooms. She saw down on a small sunflower head, clutching her arms nervously. "There is no need for fear, child." The queen said. "Dr. Flora will wrap your wings, and they will heal just fine."
Dr. Flora—a short, light-blue, freckled ant—wrapped Kimberly's wing stumps in blades of grass. She froze periodically when Kimberly flinched in pain, but kept at it. "Thank you." Kimberly said once her wings were wrapped.
Flora blinked in surprise, as if a grasshopper thanking her was an astonishing thing to hear and witness. Regardless, she nodded in response. "You weren't introduced, but this is my oldest daughter, Atta." The queen said, gesturing at the younger purple ant. "She is next in line for my crown."
Kimberly nodded politely. "My council consists of Dr. Flora, Thorny, Cornelius, and Mr. Soil. Again, I am sorry they hurt you."
"'hurt' me? They chopped my wings off!" Kimberly yelled, startling the ants. "What kind of grasshopper am I without wings?! I can't go anywhere now! I'm useless!"
"You won't be able to leave until your wings heal anyway." The queen said patiently. "And you won't be useless. You can gather food if you'd like. As I said, we're enslaved by Hopper and his gang, and must pick a large offering of food for them every summer."
Kimberly's antennae relaxed slightly. Now she knew why the ants were so afraid of her. "That…that's awful. I'm sorry."
"Well, it's been going on for a long time. They don't give us too much trouble if we meet their demands. But anyway, when your wings are healed, you can help gather food. Otherwise, I may have a job for you as-"
"Mom?" A little purple ant with freckles came into the infirmary. "I saw you come in. What's-" She froze, wide-eyed, upon seeing Kimberly. She hid behind the queen's legs, shaking.
Kimberly's eyes softened at the young ant. "Hey, I'm not gonna hurt you." She said gently.
"This is my younger daughter, Dot." The queen said. She turned to the young ant. "Dot, this is Kimberly. She'll be staying with us for a while. She isn't a part of Hopper's gang, so don't worry. Her wings were cut off, so she needs to stay."
Dot looked back at Kimberly, her fear slowly draining away. Her large eyes had curiosity now. "You don't have any wings?" She asked timidly, stepping out from behind her mother.
"Not anymore." Kimberly shook her head.
"Oh, that's too bad. I can't fly either. My wings are too little." She glanced down, looking disappointed and frustrated.
Kimberly smiled, "Well, your wings will grow in someday, and you'll be flying in no time."
Dot looked up, grinning slightly. "Really? When that comes, I won't fly too far away."
Kimberly chuckled, patting the young ant's head. "I'm glad."
"As I was saying, Kimberly, maybe you could have a job as Dot's royal guardian." The queen said.
"You mean a babysitter?" Dot scowled.
"She'll stay with you wherever you go, making sure you don't go where you aren't allowed and don't get in trouble." The queen explained patiently. She turned to Kimberly. "Do you find that satisfactory?"
Kimberly nodded, "I think so, as long as Dot doesn't object."
"Um, okay." Dot said, drawing a circle on the ground with a foot. "I-I'm still scared of grasshoppers."
"I understand." Kimberly nodded. "I don't intend to hurt anyone, so don't worry."
A/N I'm not too sure about the title. Next to summaries, titles are one of the hardest things to come up for a story. One part inspiration was Kimberly losing her wings; the other part was the song Toxic (I prefer the Glee cover to Britney Spears)
Speaking of hard things for stories, another one is the beginning chapter. It's also hard to break in a new story. The first chapter may be a bit strange and OOC for some of the ants, but I hope the rest of the story will get better. Like I said, the story will go through the movie and beyond. But most of the movie will be "behind-the-scenes." Meaning Kimberly won't be attending Flik's expedition to the city. Plus, it'll be in her POV, though it may switch to another character's now and again.
The chapter after the next may be the start of the movie; I think at least half, if not more, of the story will happen after the movie.