My entry for the Halloween prompt "100 Ways To Kill A Doctor" challenge.
1. Sheldon/Penny - They can be platonic, romantic, smutty, Super Heroes/Villains, etc.
2. Leonard/Amy's death MAY occur anytime from the Pilot thru Season 9.
3. The death must be completed in a single chapter, although you are welcome to contribute as many different forms of death as you like as long as they are a chapter each.
4. The story must be no more than 1,500 words long.
Penny stared at the three men standing in her shower for several long seconds. She suspected she should say something. Maybe have a question or two, but at the moment her mind was almost completely blank. The only thought in her mind was 'I am seeing three penises I have no interest in seeing.'
"Um, you're probably wondering why we're in your shower," Howard said nervously.
"You know, I'm really not," Penny finally managed to say, reaching out to close the shower curtain back. She spun on her heel and marched through her apartment, across the hall and into 4A.
"LEONARD!" she called out loudly. "You're bat crap crazy friends are all in my shower, buck naked! Come get them before I go jun... um...uh... fuck."
Penny heard the door open behind her, but she couldn't seem to tear her eyes away from the scene in front of her. Everything was so red! Should it be that red? And lumpy. There were little lumpy parts which baffled her.
Penny froze when Sheldon screamed. She hadn't even realized she was reaching out until he said not to. That one word seemed to clear her mind and she was finally able to make sense of what she was seeing.
"It was an accident," Howard said nervously.
"Accident," she repeated faintly. "Leonard looks like an extra from Texas Chainsaw Massacre."
"Monte did it," Sheldon said in a weak voice.
Penny turned to face them. "A card game killed Leonard?"
Howard wrung his hands together. "MONTE. The Mobile Omnidirectional Neutralization and Termination Eradicator. He's our robot."
Penny looked at the weird machine on the floor with confusion. It looked like a robot vacuum and a power saw got together and had a kid. "A mutant vacuum killed our friend?"
"Actually, it's a battle robot, for the Southern California Robot Fighting League Round Robin Invitational," Sheldon said quickly.
Penny looked at each guy. Sheldon looked a little lost. Howard looked very nervous. Raj looked like he was torn between crying and peeing himself. At least they now wore towels around their waists. Could these morons really be that clueless? "Are you all insane?" she demanded. "LEONARD IS DEAD!"
"We didn't do it on purpose," Howard said, cringing. "Monte malfunctioned. Instead of going in reverse, he moved forward and Leonard was just in the wrong place at the wrong time!"
"Penny, we can't go to jail," Sheldon said, twitching madly. "You have to help us!"
She stared at them incredulously. "You can't be serious! I can't help you cover up a murder!"
Raj burst into tears and dropped to his knees. "Holy Krishna!" he wailed. "I'll be someone's bitch before I'm even out of booking!"
Penny slumped against the wall, closed her eyes and tried to hold back the screams inching up her throat. Don't lose it now, she told herself. These guys are my friends. I have to help them. Oh god! They killed Leonard! How can I possibly help them? I can't!
A soft hand slipped into hers and she opened her eyes to find Sheldon looking at her with terrified eyes. "Tell me what to do," he begged, his voice a broken whisper.
Slowly she pulled him closer until he laid his head on her shoulder, his arms wrapping around her waist tightly. She caught a glimpse of Raj and Howard looking at her and she held out her other arm. They hurried forward and wrapped themselves around her and Sheldon. "I'll take care of it," she promised weakly, feeling the three men's tears soaking into her top. She had no idea how she would fix this, but she knew she had to try.
The fact that it took almost a month before anyone began questioning Leonard's disappearance made Penny sort of sad. The fact that it was a wealthy widowed donor that began the inquiry was even sadder. Exactly 34 days after his death, Dr. Gabelhauser cornered Sheldon, Raj and Howard in the cafeteria and asked why Leonard hadn't been at work for weeks. Howard and Raj stayed quiet, like Penny taught them, while Sheldon gave the much-rehearsed answer Penny had coached him on.
"Leonard eloped with Joyce Kim, sir. It was my understanding that everyone knew this," Sheldon said without a single twitch. All those hours practicing had helped, after all. "I believe he currently resides in North Korea."
Two days later the school's board met to discuss what Sheldon had told them. When they questioned grad students and staff, many of them claimed to know Leonard had defected. Sheldon, Howard and Raj were stunned when they found out so many of their co-workers would claim such a falsehood. When they said as much to Penny she just shrugged.
"Some people lie. Some convince themselves they already knew something. No one likes to admit they were out of the gossip loop," she explained. "Just stick with the plan. We haven't seen or heard from Leonard since he disappeared. If need be, we show them the email Howard sent from Leonard's laptop that says he loves Joyce Kim and has left to be with her. We even have the altered flight manifest that Howard hacked saying he was on a flight to South Korea. There's no body, no laptop, no evidence that anything else happened."
The guys did what she said and within a month, Leonard's disappearance was old news. New scandals and rumors took it's place. Leonard's mom never filed a police report, seemingly unconcerned with her youngest son's life. Sheldon couldn't take living in that apartment, so he bought a duplex closer to work. Each half boasted two bedrooms, living room, study, kitchen and bathroom. There was even a laundry room. Howard and Raj moved into one side, while he and Penny occupied the other.
Seasons changed, years passed, life went on, and Penny took their secret to her grave.