Disclaimer: See Chapter 2 and the prologue.

It was something called high school that stopped my usual updates. I just started being a freshman only three weeks ago. It's been hard. (hits text books)

Chapter 8

Number 1 walked over to the ladder that led to the entrance to the safe house. She grabbed the eye-level bar and let out a short sigh. She was going to have to face all that had abandoned her because of a misunderstanding. This was going to be a painful experience. How was she supposed to explain the real past? The Delightfuls had already ground their thoughts into the little brains of the remaining team. Once they said something, it was hard to push any other thoughts into someone's gray matter. After a minute of reflecting on the past to make sure she had everything right, Number 1 started to climb the ladder.

"Are you ready for this?" Cree asked her. "We can wait another minute or so until you're sure you can take everyone on."

"The longer we wait," Number 1 began, "the less chance we have of saving the future and bringing Melanie back to life. It's important that we fix our lives."

"And I don't want you to commit suicide in the future."

"Thanks, Cree."

Number 1 continued to climb the ladder followed by Cree, then Number 30C, then Number 10, and then Chad. He looked back down at Hammie sitting in a corner with Melanie in his arms. Their bloodstreams were still connected, and it was showing through Hammie's expression. His eyes were baggy, and his skin started to tighten around his meatless body. Melanie started to gain a slight bit of color back into her cheeks. At what cost though?

"You don't look good at all," Chad commented to the futuristic genius. "Do you want to take a break or something? One of us could switch with you so you can get some of your strength back."

"That depends," Hammie replied. "Melanie's blood type is AB-."

"That's the rarest there is!"

"Exactly. My blood type is O. Does anyone else here have an O blood type or an AB- type?"

"I don't. What about you guys?" Chad looked up at the rest of the team members.

"Mine is A," Number 1 announced. "I'm missing the B and the negative."

"I've got AB," Number 10 chimed in, "but I don't think that's good enough."

"I'm not sure what mine is," Number 30C confessed. "I do know that it's not O or AB- though. No one in my family as far back as I can remember has either of those blood types."

"She must have gotten that from Nigel's side of the family," Cree told them. "Mine is sort of the same case with..." She stopped short. "Hey! Wait a second!" She turned to 30C. "What is your name anyway?"

"I'm not telling! You guys will have to figure it out on your own."

"You're a mystery operative, aren't you?"

"Yes! And I'm damn proud of it, too! Just take some time to think. The answer is a lot more obvious than you think."

"I'm confused," Number 1 whined. "I don't get it."

"You don't think very hard."

"Aw, shut up. My brain's been turned off since summer vacation started."

Number 1 continued up the ladder to the surface. Her friends followed. Hammie stood with Melanie in his arms as he watched the small team go to confront the worst enemies anyone could think of. He held Melanie close to his body and felt the tiny heartbeat in her chest. Somehow, the sound of it gave him new hope.

"Everything's going to be okay, Daddy, Mommy," he spoke to his deceased parents. "This is the girl you guys always told me about when I was still really little. Well, I'm meeting her now. Uncle Tommy, I remember your stories about wanting to be with the older kids. I'm with an older kid now. I guess I'm living your dream. Megan's going to save us all. She can do it."

Number 1 emerged from the safe house door to see the Delightfuls, Father, and Mother ordering the KND and TND to bow down before them. She stood up on the solid ground and brushed off her skirt of the dirt and rubble. Cree, Number 30C, Number 10, and Chad followed and stood near her, ready to support the TND leader for whatever she might need. Number 1 took a deep breath and started walking towards the group of people.

She's so brave, Cree thought. I'd never be able to match what she's doing.

The bowing-down ceremony stopped as everyone caught sight of Number 1 walking towards the Delightfuls, Father, and Mother. One at a time, Number 1 passed them with a straight face.

"Traitor," Number 86 sneered as Number 1 walked past her.

"Bitch," Numbuh 4 added.

"Baka," Mushi finished.

"What?" Number 1 asked, stopping short. Mushi slapped herself in the head.

"Arg! I've been watching too many of Sara's animes! Idiot!"

Number 1 shrugged off the small child's strange ways of speaking. She walked further ahead towards the enemy, listening and taking in the taunts and teases along the way. Her temper was rising past its boiling point, but she knew better than to let it go now. No. She would have to wait for her to unleash it. This temper tantrum of hers could possibly save the world.

"What do you want?" Mary asked casually. "Would you like us to insult you again? Maybe we could make your life even more miserable. How does that sound?"

"Shut up," Number 1 ordered in reply. "I am simply here to make an accusation against you."

"That's absurd."

"But I truly am going to."

"Then spit it out already!"

"YOU'VE BEEN LYING TO EVERYONE!!!"

The world turned silent as Number 1's explosion caused the Delightfuls to become very nervous. She looked at them straight in the eyes and shook her head. Mary tried to regain her posture. The Kids and Teens Next Door watched with increasing curiosity. What was Number 1 thinking?

"You feel like explaining that?" Mother said, quite offended. "It's rude to just go around throwing accusations like that one at anyone."

"I'm not lying, but I have the evidence to prove you guys are," Number 1 countered. "You guys should pay more attention to mythology and legends. You must have created an alternate ending to this legend. Mary, you and I are not descendants of that harsh ruler."

"If the two of us are not descendants," Mary began, "then what are we?"

"It's not what you are, it's what I am. I am the reincarnation of that harsh ruler, and you are the demon that killed me and my son!"

"What are you talking about?" Numbuh 1 called from the group. "What son are you talking about?"

"You, Nigel. You were my son."

Numbuh 1 stepped back in surprise. His eyes widened underneath his sunglasses as a faint blush grew to his cheeks. Numbuh 5 stood beside him and squeezed his hand. Numbuh 1 squeezed back and bit his lip.

"So I was reincarnated, too?"

"Looks that way. Numbuh 5 thinks we should trust Number 1."

"Even after letting us all be killed?"

"Shh. This might be going somewhere."

Number 1 stood her ground as she felt some sort of aura surround her fists down at her sides. She gritted her braces-covered teeth and tried explaining this to the enemy.

"I have no clue where the hell you guys got the idea that we're descendants, but it's wrong. I was the harsh ruler of that planet thousands of years ago. My team members were the slaves. Numbuh 1 was my son, born after I was raped. You and the rest of the Delightful Teenagers as well as Mother and Father were the demons that killed us. What do you guys say to that, huh?"

The Delightfuls froze at Number 1's dead-on explanation. Mary stumbled backwards in utter shock and horror. Daimion and Mitchell held onto her as Jessica and Tina stepped out in front.

"We don't know how you regained your memories,"

"But you'll be joining them soon!!"

The two Delightful Girls shot their powers from their hands. Jessica's rope fingers tied together into a noose. Tina shot flames out to surround the ropes going for Number 1's pale neck. Number 1 simply smirked and shot her hands out. The black aura surrounding them spread out into a giant force field that engulfed the teams in divine power. The shield also protected the door to the safe house.

"Since when can you do that??" Number 8 shouted.

"Since just now?" Number 1 replied with a question. She shrugged her shoulders in bewilderment. "I don't get it either! I'm just as confused as you are!"

"Oh well," Number 3 agreed. "Hey, we're safe! That's good."

"DAMN BITCH!!!" Mary shouted to Number 1. "YOU'RE GOING TO PAY FOR THAT!!!"

Number 1 narrowed her eyes and stepped out of the shield. She ran for Mary with her black fists held high. Mary jetted out her fingernails into the long, sharp blades. She charged for her alter ego in her demon form. Number 1 did not stop to stare at this power. She knew this fight.

Only this time, she would win.

Number 1 jumped up high and brought her fists down onto the Delightful Teenager. It became an all-out fistfight between the two girls. Mary dug her fingernails into Number 1's pale, soft flesh and created scars that would last forever. Number 1 counter with a few good punches right into Mary's cat-like eyes. That was when she first saw the demon blood run from her face.

"Why didn't anyone tell me there would be a fight?" Faith asked. "I could have sold tickets."

"Don't you dare speak like that!" Numbuh 3 scolded. "You've got a behavior problem, you know that?"

"But we could have made some good money."

The fight continued. Mary's anger was growing to its peak. Soon, she would not be able to control her emotions anymore. Number 1 sensed the fear residing within the rage. She knew that could be a weakness. She took her glasses off her face and blast a huge power wave of her blackness right through the lenses. They worked like a magnifying glass and almost tripled her power. Mary fell down to the ground with a hard stab right into a pile of rocks.

"Does anyone else want a piece of my power?" Number 1 asked the Delightfuls as she walked up to Father. She smiled at him. "I think you have something that belongs to my reincarnated granddaughter."

Number 1 stabbed one of her dark fists into Father and grabbed at a shining light within him. Slowly, she brought her hand back to herself. Within her palm, she held a small glow.

Melanie's soul.

Father widened his eyes and went to burn Number 1. Thinking fast, Number 1 ran behind Mother and pushed her in front of him. By accident, Father burned Mother to a crisp.

"You've murdered so many people," Number 1 told Father. "You killed the Kids and Teens Next Door. You killed all three of your apprentices. You stole the lives of innocent people and made four defenseless children homeless orphans. You scared the entire world population into bowing down at your feet. Did you think I was just going to let you take us all? We don't belong to you. That has been our fight. That is our fight. That will always be our fight. We are Kids and Teens Next Door, and we will always be there to kick your sorry ass."

Number 1 kicked Father right down the middle. He fell over in pain and cringed at the TND leader's amazing power. She turned to the rest of the Delightfuls.

I wish I had a camera, she thought. This is too priceless.

She walked towards her teams and let the shield die down. She handed the soul into Numbuh 1's hands and smiled down at him. Numbuh 1 smiled back and let some tears fall down his face as he held the soul close to his body. Numbuh 5 and Cree stared in awe at the beauty of it. So bright and full of power, of course she was one of theirs.

Without a warning, Number 1 collapsed from exhaustion. The TND grew nervous for her and bent down to see if she was okay. Number 10 brushed some of her dirty blonde hair away from her face.

"You saved the future," she mumbled. "It's like the part in Teen Titans where Terra saves Jump City from the volcano."

"We can't thank you enough," Number 274 rewarded. "What can I say? You're the best there is."

"I don't know many people that could stand up to them like that," Number 2 whispered. "You're my best friend."

"Guys!" Hammie called, stepping out of the safe house. "I can't hold out much longer! Do you have Melanie's soul?"

"Right here!" Cree told him. Numbuh 1 walked over to Melanie grasping onto Hammie's black sweater. Gently, he placed the soul back within his future daughter's body. He waited for a moment. Miraculously, her eyes started to flutter open. Her fingers started to twitch. Hammie smiled weakly and fell to the ground. Numbuh 2, Lizzie, and Tommy grabbed onto him and hugged him affectionately.

"We have to go," Lizzie whispered to him. "Our work is done here."

"We'll be waiting for you," Numbuh 2 added, setting him on the ground. He turned to Faith and Craig. "Can the two of you keep an eye on them until they get their strength back?"

"Something tells me we'll have a little help," Craig smirked.

Footsteps were heard from out in the distance. That was a sign that the future was already taking a turn for the better.

"We have to get out of here!" Number 5 shouted. "Those are our future selves!"

"If our two selves meet..." Number 4 trailed off, "then we'll all disappear forever! For real this time!!"

"Everyone!" Faith called. "Get to the safe house. We have to keep you guys out of site of your future forms."

"We'll keep them distracted," Craig added. "You'll find the control to Hammie's time machine on the keyboard to the super computer. Remember, five at a time only! Go already! They're coming closer!"

The KND and TND stalled for a moment before running towards the safe house entrance. Number 3 and Number 6 picked Number 1 up and carried her over with the rest of the group. Numbuh 1 opened the latch and sent his teammates down one-by-one. He bit his lip, as the footsteps grew closer.

Suddenly, as he pushed the last team member down the ladder, Numbuh 1 felt the presence of someone behind him. He looked up and saw the faded silhouette of his older self.

Even if the course of history should change forever, he thought. He smiled up at his future form and jumped to the ladder. Before closing the door to the safe house, he said:

"You have a beautiful daughter."

End of Chapter Eight