Disclaimer: I don't own "Rick and Morty"
Author's Note: So, as a gift to my readers, I wanted to write a little follow-up sequel to "For Every Rick a Season", to have Rick and Jenna 'bond' a little bit (well, as much as Rick would allow himself to really 'bond' with anyone). Read on and enjoy! Let me know what you think; Jenna might show up in other stories as well-depending on what direction they take me! :) PS: This takes place not long after the ending of "For Every Rick a Season". So you know what's going on, I'd read that first-as this is a sequel-it's long but worth the trip! ;-D Happy Reading!
***Somewhere in the Galaxy***
"Heeere it is, dawg!" Rick Sanchez beamed with pride as he threw open the door to his all-time favorite place for ice cream, known as "Dry Ice". "This place is CRAAAZY cool-you won't find the good stuff like this anywhere else-And-I actually mean anywhere," he added to his companion with a wink.
Jenna, his female guest for the night, looked around with awe, taking in the brightly colored tiles on both floor and ceiling, and gasping with amazement at the seemingly endless waves of dry ice mist that greeted them in billowing clouds of coolness. "Wow, Rick," she breathed with excitement, grinning at him, "this place is amazing! Thanks so much for taking me!"
Rick shrugged, "Hey don't sweat it kid. Just know you haven't lived until you've tried their Geopolitan."
Jenna joined him quickly at the counter, where a pimply-faced young man with shaggy brown hair, rabbit ears and jagged-looking buck teeth greeted them with a shy smile. "Why-hello!" he exclaimed and held a hand out towards Jenna, "It's not too often we get homo sapiens in the neighborhood. Welcome-pick your flavor-any flavor!" He gestured wildly at the long, meticulous list.
Jenna giggled, suddenly feeling like a silly child as she pointed eagerly up at the decorative chalkboard. "Rick-what's in a 'Collagenutcase'?"
"Ah-not a bad choice for a first timer," Rick winked at her, and Jenna giggled again (albeit sheepishly), "that's a nutty flavored ice cream that makes you look and feel younger. BUT," Rick added with as much seriousness as he could muster, "it also contains a melanin-reducing agent so there's a 50-50 chance your hair will turn gray "
"Whaat!?" Jenna gasped and then burst out laughing, "but-why on Earth would you want to take chances like that?"
"Guess you wouldn't like the next place I'm taking you then," Rick said with forced indifference.
"What? What's that?"
"Blips and Chitz. Think Dave and Buster's meets, er, Mohegan Sun."
"Woa-cool!" Jenna couldn't help but admit that she was really enjoying herself. She had never imagined that she'd be travelling through portals and travelling to different planets and dimensions. She wasn't sure what to think of this strange, incredible man who called himself 'Rick Sanchez'. They had just left an Earth that was in the throes of 'Chronemageddon', and she wondered if the rest of Rick's family had wondered where they had gone. (Still, she couldn't help but feel a little bit...well...special, that he'd chosen to take her away from a world she had all but given up on. It helped to know that, at least elsewhere in the Universe, there were worlds and even whole other dimensions that were doing okay, surviving in spite of it all...
It was still a lot to swallow, knowing that other species actually existed, as did time travel (or so Rick said), and that her friend actually owned a working portal gun (that he had built himself, no less) was blowing her mind all on its own.
Still, with all that lay out before her, Jenna was more than a little curious as to who this 'Rick Sanchez' really was...and why he seemed to have forgotten all the bad things they left behind...including how he'd almost used her gun on himself, and would have, too, had she not been there at just the right time.
"Miss?" It was the pimply-faced rabbit-type guy talking. He was encouraging her to make a selection.
"She'll have one of the Endless Lickers," Rick declared as he quickly handed over the cash.
"But what's in a-" Jenna blushed as she realized it was obvious in the name.
"It's like a sampler," Rick explained anyway (much to her relief), "so you can choose quicker next time."
"Thanks." Jenna grinned back at him, grateful in spite of her embarrassment.
"And your choice sir?" asked the attendant to Rick.
"The usual-I'll have my good ol' Geopolitan." Pleased by the transaction, Rick led them both over to the nearest table and they took a seat across from each other. Outside, the sun was just coming up over the trees, casting rainbows through the shop's meticulously clean windows.
"This place is beautiful," Jenna murmured, as she took in the scene with a blissful look on her face. "So...serene, and...perfect. And to top it off it's open 24 hours? Wow," she added with an understanding nod of approval, "No wonder you like to come here."
"Usually-I come here alone," Rick admitted as he splashed some liquor in his coffee (ignoring Jenna's questioning stares). "Without my delightfully bickering grandchildren, who can't seem to keep their sticky paws off my upholstery."
Jenna giggled at the remark. "I like Morty a lot," she admitted with a smile. "He's a good kid." She tried to think of what to say about Summer. (They hadn't exactly gotten along well so far.) "Summer is..."
"-a royal, stuck up pain in the ass?" Rick finished for her with a snort. "Couldn't agree with you more."
"She seems...confused," Jenna offered carefully. "She-said something about...the 'other Summer'...what the heck did she mean by that?"
A sudden, heavy silence came over the table, and Jenna blushed profusely as she saw Rick's expression shift to one she couldn't easily decipher. "I-I'm sorry Rick. I didn't mean to-" She halted, adding hastily, "I-I shouldn't be so nosy. It's-it's not my place. I'm sorry." She suddenly wondered what she was doing there; why was she getting ice cream with this strange man who had to be more than twice her age?
"Forget it." He took a quick lick of his ice cream, his eyes focusing intently on something beyond her vision. "Summer isn't evil," Rick allowed as he shifted awkwardly in his seat.
Jenna's eyes widened with horror. "I never meant to imply that-"
"She had to grow up pretty fast." The words flew out of Rick's mouth before he could stop them. Shit-you idiot. Are you talking about Summer or yourself?
Jenna nursed her coffee a bit before taking a couple licks of her own ice cream cone. "So did I," she heard herself admitting, so softly that Rick almost had to strain to hear her. "I...lost my Dad when I was very young and...my mother turned into one of those...things...so...'' Jenna trailed off, suddenly regretting having mentioned any of it at all.
"I'm...sorry." Rick sounded very tired.
"I-didn't mean to kill the mood," Jenna apologized again quickly, fearful of the exhaustion she saw in his eyes. The distant look that she'd seen when they'd met only a few hours before (had it really only been that long?) had returned, but at least there wasn't the rage that accompanied it. "Are you okay?" Jenna asked, hoping she didn't sound as scared as she felt. (How would she get home if Rick lost it again? She wasn't sure she could handle that; she'd be lost in the universe once again, left to fend for herself just like before. She couldn't do it again.)
"How's the ice cream?" he asked her instead of answering, quickly deflecting the question back to the current moment.
"Delicious," Jenna declared as she forced a semi-brave smile. "How's yours?" So it would be small talk for now. She could live with that...at least, for awhile.
"Not much better than the Geopolitan," Rick boasted, the light returning at once to his eyes, "It even has a hardened molten lava chocolate center for its solid inner core."
"What are those layers supposed to be?" Jenna was hoping this would distract him and (thank God) it seemed to be working.
"Different parts of the Earth's crust," Rick grinned as he kept right on licking, then he handed it out towards her, adding almost reluctantly, "Wanna taste of the upper continental crust? They made the chocolate chip and marshmallow ice cream resemble metamorphic rock formations."
"Uh-sure," Jenna said bashfully as she took a bite. "That's amazing!" she gushed, surprised by the myriad of flavors that hit her taste buds all at once. "Here, wanna try some of mine?" she asked, handing him her cone, but Rick burst out laughing in spite of himself.
"That's okay-I've tried 'em all!" he chuckled. "Now, hurry up, we wanna be the first at Blips and Chitz-there's a golden worm with a winning prize that has my name on it!" Rick gobbled down the rest of his cone, downed the coffee and sprinted towards the door.
Jenna giggled with amusement as she watched him bouncing eagerly out the door. He might be 80 years old but he's just like a little kid, she thought to herself with a knowing smile. She was beginning to enjoy her adventures with this Rick Sanchez. He may as well be a mystery, but she knew eventually she'd solve the puzzle.
Like her mother used to say-she was her father's daughter, and always did.