Standard disclaimers.

This is for Charlene. I hope it provides a few minutes distraction.

Hamster Boy and the Space Robot **

"He has a little cape! Isn't it cute? He has a little cape...." Plastic Man elongated his face as he fussed, poking at the towel tied around the boy's neck. "Where'd'ja get the cape? Didja raid Batman's bathroom?"

Hamster Boy was sitting on Superman's lap, still coloring and concentrating really hard. Mommy said if you talked to Plastic Man, that just encouraged him. Besides, he was MUCH funnier than Plastic Man. He was going to be a comedian when he grew up. Alfie said so. He always said "well, aren't you just the little comedian." And Alfie knew everything. Like if he was doing something bad, Alfie would tell him he was going to get hurt, and then he would. Alfie was obviously a meta-human.

"Well, I stole it outta my sister's room. So it smells kinda bad, and has a big pi-ture of Shatzi on it, but it makes her mad, so it's good to take stuff off uh her." He smacked his forehead. He forgot he wasn't supposed to be talking to Plastic Man.

"What'd we talk about? About taking things out of your sister's room?" Superman asked patiently.

Sometimes it stunk that The Big Guy was always right. "I gotta ask first. But ebery time I ask, she ties me up."

Why was Uncle Clark smiling? Wasn't he supposed to get in trouble or something? "Well, we're about to start, little guy, so you have to sit here and be quiet and keep coloring."

Hamster Boy rolled his eyes. "I already gotted read the riot act. If I step outta da line, than daddy's gunna put me in the dog house and momma's gunna bop me and Alfie's gunna do unspeakable fings, and Batman's gunna annimil—anilalihila-hinial--"

"Annihilate," Batman helped from the monitors.

"Uhh huh. Me. So. Quiet and good." The boy began putting his crayons away. he kept the chewed-on black one out and looked around cautiously, waiting for his chance.

"Great." Superman looked around to the loitering group of heroes. "It's about that time, folks."

Green Lantern and a few others took their seats. Batman took his time but also followed suit. He made a conscious effort to not look at Superman or the child on his lap. "Wonder Woman appears to be otherwise engaged. We're going to start without her."

He started handing out folders. Superman opened is, and Jimmy blushed. The first page was all about the self-replicating whipped cream that had filled the Monitor Womb last month. It had been really really funny, and stuff, but he was sure Uncle Clark was going to give him 'that look' and he knew he wouldn't like it.

Hamster Boy heard the sounds of the boom tube activating. He turned around and looked over Uncle Clark's shoulder. Wonder Woman stepped off of the platform with a large crushed piece of metal. She was dirty and her costume had burn marks across the metal.

As she stepped towards the conference table, several members of the League rose. Out of breath, she only made it half way to the table before she thunked it down and sighed. "Before we do anything else... we should figure out what THIS thing is, and why it was attacking Thymescria."

* * *

Jimmy—Hamster Boy—had been told to go 'play' in the recreation room and not cause trouble, till his dad could get a break in the action and come get him. Superman suspected it was a bad idea, but Batman had stared the boy down, and let him know that he'd be in trouble if he caused any mischief.

"I have nothing on the satellites. I don't think it came from off-world," Batman announced to the group. There wern't many people left on the room, the rest of the league were scouring the area around Thymescria to make sure there wern't any more of the things hanging around.

"It came from the sky. And it was not traveling. It was defiantly doing an entry into the atmosphere."

"It remains to be seen," Batman told her, rising from his chair. "Investigating the robot may be the only thing that gives us any indication as to where it came from." He began walking towards the labs. "It would be easier if it hadn't been crushed into a ball," he added critically.

Wonder Woman didn't bother to respond. He'd been cranky since before she showed up. It probably wasn't personal.

Batman punched the access codes to the secure lab and the door slid open.

"If yer not gonna talk," a small voice promised, "I'm gunna make ya eat the green one..."

A second later, Superman was pulling the boy away from the half uncompressed robot. "WHAT are you doing?" Wow. He sounded like 'that grownup.'

"Well, I'm terrigating the prithiner," Hamster Boy explained. He pointed his green crayon at the now-lit eyes of the robot.

"WHY is it reactivated?" Batman asked, tearing the crayon from the boy's hand and putting it on the table. It appeared that he only had green, red and purple left.

Hamster Boy rolled his eyes. "Cuz you haveta re-attivate him so'z you can terrigate him!"

"It could have KILLED you," Wonder Woman pointed out with concern.

"Nuh uh. His guns're still bent up. And I fixed his computer brain so allz he can do is play Ping Pong now. Ping Pong's a really gewd game. Anyways, Mr. Binks ... I named him Mr. Binks cuz it's a gewd name... he got hired by Hera."

"That's the most ridiculous thing I've ever heard." Wonder Woman looked the robot over again. "Why would a goddess hire a... a metal machine?"

"Well, I was just getting' to that part! Then everyone's all like 'oh nooo! Don't play with the robot, that's danjeris and stuff!' so I don't know why. Everybody's gots to be real quiet so'z I can terrigate him."

Summing up all of his patience, Batman handed the young man back his crayon. "Do it. Make it quick."

Hamster Boy swung his legs until Superman let him go. He walked back over to the robot and opened the twisted metal to his fueling unit. "Ok, Mr. Binks. If ya don't tell me why she hired ya, I'm gunna haveta shove the crayon down yer bunghole." He looked around at the group of heroes. "Mama said I'm not allowed to do that no more," he whispered, as if that was some sort of explanation as to why this was a horrible fate.

The robot gave an electronic whine. "I shall not tell."

"Ok, mister. This iz gunna hurt you more than it hurts me." He shoved the crayon into the robot, and it immediately it began sparking and smoking. "I got a whole nuther box where this one came from!"

"The rules of engagement were based upon the 'Throw Mama From The Train' Therum."

"What?" Wonder Woman clearly did not understand the reference, or why this robot was spouting it.

Hamster Boy patted his prisoner on the head. "Thanks, Mr. Binks . It's a chris cross. Like Throw Mama from the Train." He could see their disbelief. "Well, he didn't say words I could understand so I reprogrammed his langidge center from da tower's movie database. He knows really gewd swear words now."

Superman folded his arms over his chest. "Ask 'Mr. Binks' what he was getting in return for the double-cross?"

Hamster Boy grabbed his two remaining crayons. "Well... answer Sthuperman. Cuz we can do this the good way, or the hard way..." He gradually brought the red crayon closer and closer to the fuel center.

"As we speak, the great and powerful Hera is destroying the Bilzartian line of succession. Soon, I shall rule." The robot cackled a menacing laugh.

Batman began walking towards the door. "Jimmy, reprogram that thing with the Oxford Shakespeare compendium, right now." He exited, walking back towards the monitor womb.

"Does that mean I get to keep him?" Hamster Boy asked excitedly.

"Programmed him to play ping pong?" Superman asked skeptically. Hamster Boy blushed.

Wonder Woman also made her way towards the door, presumably to join Batman in contacting the others. "He is a very strange child." And she left.

Hamster Boy put away his remaining crayon. "Ping Pong's important. It's a 'lypic sport,"

"The competition shall be annihilated," Mr. Binks added.