Author's note: Fair warning, this is all fluff and humor. No action, no suspense, no cliffhangers. It's just a sort of extended happy ending of sorts, kind of like Return Of The King, but without six different endings and the embarrassing scene where Frodo wakes up and everyone comes in like the introduction of a basketball team line-up…
But I digress.
Anyway, I'll be out of town until May 20, and then will come back prepared to do some serious reading. The reviews are nothing short of overwhelming, and I thank each and every one of you who left one. I have them all saved on the same file as my story.
And now, I think I will close this little speech before the "I-just-finished-a-story-I-really-enjoyed-writing" depression sets in. Consider this epilogue a big "thank you" to everyone who read REUNION.
G-Go (AKA Garrett York)
The cool morning breeze was coming off the ocean. Small waves rippled against the sand and made almost no noise at all. Ron wondered if the hint of tropical fruit in the air was natural, or was there some artificial scent sprayer meant to impress the tourists?
Then he wondered what the sudden feeling of déjà vu was about.
He looked around the beach for a bit, and then resumed unloading the supplies from the Ninjet. Kim and Ronnie-Anne would return from the village soon, and if he didn't have the stuff unloaded, it would put them a little behind schedule.
The air was warm and humid, and it didn't take long for Ron to work up a sweat. He stopped for a moment to wipe his forehead.
"Hey", Wade said, "You can't just leave me to unload all this stuff by myself."
Ron looked at the Wadebot RX Mark Six with a sarcastic gleam in his eye.
"You're not unloading anything, dude. You're sitting in a chair back in Middleton. I'm the only one here who's doing any manual labor."
"Hey," Wade protested, "The humidity and sand isn't exactly easy on the servos."
"You're telling me the Wadebot actually get fatigued?"
"In a manner of speaking, yes." Wade answered.
"OK, fine," Ron relented, "Whatever. When your machine actually begins to sweat, then I'll consider taking up a more equal workload."
Wad said nothing, but Ron could hear him punching several buttons. The Wadebot began to glisten with a fine sheen of mist.
"Oh, that's very funny," Ron said sarcastically, "You really went to a lot of trouble to mess with my mind, didn't you?"
"No, not really," Wade said sheepishly, "It's just coolant to keep the Central Processor from overheating. Wind cools the liquid, which regulates past the CPU and allows the Wadebot to function even in this tropical heat. Messing with your mind is just a bonus."
Ron sighed and resumed unloading the supplies.
"I believe your wife and daughter have returned" Wade said, the bot pointed off in the distance.
"Yep," he agreed, "Here they come."
Over a low rise, leading what looked like two farm animals, appeared his wife, Kim, and their six-year-old daughter, Veronica Anne Stoppable. They called her Ronnie-Anne, or sometimes just Ronnie. She was practically a mirror image of her mother at that age; bright red hair pulled up in pigtails, freckles, deep green eyes. To complete the image, she was dressed in child-sized cargo pants with a black sweater. Mom didn't think she was old enough for bare midriffs yet, however.
Mom's sweater didn't leave a bare midriff either. Although she looked terrific as always, Kim had gained a little modesty since giving birth to the children. Her bare midriff days were behind her.
Kim was leading a tall, white llama, while Ronnie-Anne guided a small donkey. They stepped from the rise out onto the sand and approached the aircraft.
The Ninjet Mark Four had evolved into a family vehicle over the years. There were two rear seats, one with a child seat anchored to it. The child seat was for their youngest, a boy whom they named Timothy James Stoppable, now eighteen months old. They were already calling him TJ. TJ did not come with them today, however. Dr. Grandma Possible was babysitting him back in Middleton.
"Aren't you guys finished yet?" Kim called when they were still a ways off.
"I can't get this guy to work any faster!" Wade called back through the bot.
"I'm being harassed by a machine," Ron complained. "That's why I can't get any work done!"
Ron halted work to greet his family. He kissed his wife and picked up his daughter.
"How did you like the village, sweetie?" he asked her.
"The donkey stable was stinky." She responded, holding her nose.
"How come you didn't get two of them?"
"The other donkey in the village had a hurt foot, so we had to get a llama." His daughter answered.
Their mission was to take supplies to a mountaintop lair, but Wade was getting some strange readings and couldn't tell if the lair had air defense systems. They decided to play it safe and land on the beach, then haul the supplies up the mountain by pack animal.
Ron set Ronnie-Anne down again, she continued to talk. "Mommy says I can't go on the mission with you!" she complained.
"You are on the mission with us, honey." Ron responded.
"We talked about this before we left," Kim crouched down on one knee to talk to her daughter, "This is your first mission, and you got to come to the village with me to get the animals. But now you have to stay here on the beach with Rufus and Wade."
"But I want to go up to the lair with you guys!" the little girl protested.
"Don't argue with your mother, Veronica," Ron only called her that in times such as this.
Ronnie-Anne Stoppable pulled out her most dangerous weapon, and unleashed its full strength upon her father. Her eyebrows arched, her eyes got very big, and her lower lip protruded slightly further out than her upper lip.
Puppy Dog Pout set on full power.
"Oh all right" he said scampering over to the cockpit of the Ninjet. He retrieved a small duffel, unzipped it, and pulled out a tiny grappler, handing it to his daughter.
"Ron!" Kim protested. She crouched down and examined the little grappler her daughter was eagerly turning over in her hands.
"Aww, that's so cute," Kim said, then straightened up and glared at her husband, "And so very wrong!"
"Puppy Dog Pout!" Ron said defensively.
"You're staying here on the beach, young lady," Kim said firmly.
And even though she knew her mother was immune to it, Ronnie-Anne tried the Puppy Dog Pout on her anyway.
"No way, honey," Kim said casually, "I invented that look. You're staying here."
Ron, Kim, and the Wadebot began loading supplies on to the pack animals.
"She gets it from you, you know." Ron said half-accusingly to his wife, "In fact, I think she gets everything from you."
"There's some of you in her!" Kim insisted. They both turned to look at their little girl.
Ronnie-Anne was suddenly distracted by a butterfly, turned to chase after it, tripped and fell face first into the sand.
"And there it is!" Kim observed.
"Kim." The Wadebot cut in, "I'm getting a call from your mom. Want me to patch it through?"
"Please and thank you, Wade." Kim turned to look at the face plate of the Wadebot. Mrs. Dr. Possible's face appeared, "What's up, Mom?"
"Hi, Kim." She chirped, "I'm having trouble remembering whether TJ has any dairy allergies or not."
"None that we know of, why?"
"The baby was fussy all morning and we couldn't understand why. But then your father fed him a microwave burrito. He stopped fussing, which was nice, but I'm not sure if the cheese is going to be OK for him."
Kim threw a quick glare at Ron who continued to load supplies and pretended not to be listening.
"TJ won't have any allergic reactions to the cheese, Mom. But he will have other unpleasant reactions. You'll probably want to go get more diapers." Kim said, exasperated.
"Oh, I've already sent your father to the store for them." Dr. Grandma Possible acknowledged.
"Alrighty," Kim acknowledged pleasantly, "That's pretty much all I can tell you. Sorry about the mess."
"Oh, it's no trouble," Kim's mother beamed, "You know when you were this age, you used to fill your diapers with-"
"Woops!" Came Wade's voice, "I think the signal got cut off."
"That's terrible," Kim said unconvincingly, then she threw an annoyed look at Ron, "You told my Dad about the burritos?"
"You know how TJ is with the fussiness. He's just a big whiner. The burritos calm him down!" Ron stated plainly.
"Wonder where he gets that from?" Kim asked with a touch of sarcasm.
"I didn't want your parents to have to put up with a fussy baby," Ron defended himself.
Ronnie-Anne walked over, spitting sand. "Is TJ being fussy again?"
"Yep!" Kim said pleasantly, "I think he misses his big sister."
"Did you tell Grandma to put a burrito in the microwave?" The young girl asked.
Kim rolled her eyes, bringing them to gaze at her husband, You are so busted.
Ron grinned back at her, putting the last of the supplies on the little donkey. A far away voice was heard from the Wadebot.
"Wade! Your daughter took her baby monitor apart again, and she needs her diaper changed."
"Baby, I'm sorry," Wade called back over his shoulder, "But I'm on a mission right now."
"You're what?" The woman walked up behind Wade and leaned into view, her face appeared on the screen, "Oh, hey guys!"
"Hey Monique!" Kim responded, "How's Ariel?"
"Her father keeps putting the baby monitor too close to the crib," Monique answered giving Wade a very light smack to the back of the head, "And she keeps taking it apart."
"Is she hurting herself?" Kim asked, concerned.
"No," Wade answered quickly, casting a defensive glance at his wife.
"The girl takes the battery out first," Monique explained, "Then she takes the monitor apart, and disconnects every single, tiny part and lays them out in front of her in perfect little rows. Every time I go in there, the crib looks like a miniature electronics factory."
"I've got similar problems," Kim said sympathetically, "Guess whose father gave her a grappler?"
Kim stepped aside. The camera on the Wadebot trained in on Ron, who was crouched behind his daughter with his arms around her, helping her steady the grappler. Ronnie-Anne pulled the trigger and a tiny hook shot forth, trailed by about six feet of cable. The little girl squealed with delight.
"Did you make a tiny grappler for that child?" Monique was heard interrogating her husband.
"Of course not!", Wade protested, "I made it for Ron."
"I think we better get moving if we're going to make it back by tonight," Ron informed Kim.
"OK", Kim acknowledged, turning back to face the Wadebot, "We still on for girl's night out this Friday?"
"You know it, Kim!" Monique said enthusiastically "Why don't we go see 'Remember My Love' at the movies?"
"Excellent!" Kim confirmed.
Ron, Wade, and Rufus all made gagging noises.
"Ugh! Chick flick!" Rufus whined.
"You boys have a problem with quality cinema?" Kim demanded.
"It's not quality cinema-" Wade began.
"-unless something blows up." Ronnie-Anne finished.
Ron pretended to become emotional, "That's my girl!" he said with a fake sob. He leaned down and kissed her on the forehead.
Kim rolled her eyes and then surveyed the pack animals.
"Which one do you want?" she asked her husband, "You want the donkey or the llama?"
Ron looked at them both. The donkey appeared to be gentle, tame, almost sleepy. The other animal spit in Ron's direction and seemed to be regarding him with contempt.
"So not the llama," Ron said firmly.
They took the reigns of their respective animals – the llama continuing to spit in Ron's direction – and led them up away from the beach toward the distant mountain near the center of the island. Just before they reached the tree line they heard a distant voice.
"Bye, Mommy", the little girl called, "Bye, Daddy!"
They turned to wave. Ronnie-Anne grappled the wing of the Ninjet and swung herself up onto it with little trouble, and waved to them enthusiastically. They waved back and then turned back toward the trees.
"Terrific," Kim said, sighing, "Now we're going to have to grapple-proof the house."
It was clear, however, that both parents were secretly pleased with what they had just seen.
Life was full of activity for the Stoppables. And with a daughter going into the first grade, the busy-ness only seemed to be increasing. Veronica had come along about eighteen months into their marriage, and they were ready for a child by that time. Timothy James had been an unexpected surprise, but a very happy one. He, too had his mother's red hair and green eyes, and they loved him every bit as much as his sister.
Veronica inherited a guardian angel almost from the day she was born. Rufus was quite taken with her, and very fiercely protective. For six years now, he never once left her side, refusing to even go on missions if it meant he couldn't keep his eye on her. He would walk with her to school, sleep in her little backpack, and then see that she got safely home every day. Rufus glared suspiciously at any strangers that even walked near her, and once had to take down a Pit Bull that had gotten loose and gone after her. Whatever Rufus had done, that dog never so much as sniffed at a stranger ever again. Veronica Anne Stoppable was probably the only person on earth who had a naked mole rat for a bodyguard.
Hero work for the Stoppables was as constant as it ever was. There were always villains, and they always needed thwarting. Kim envied Ron a little for the luxury he had of choosing what role he would play in each mission. Sometimes he was Ronin, sometimes he was Kim Possible's sidekick. On occasion he liked not having to call the shots on a mission, and was very comfortable letting his wife take the lead. On a rare occasion, Kim Possible and Ronin would disagree on a course of action to take during a mission. But that's marriage. Sometimes there's going to be conflict when you're saving the world. Ron enjoyed the variety.
In fact, he once went on a mission as the Fearless Ferret.
They were in Go City for Kim's college reunion when Aviarius attacked. He was menacing Go City with an army of giant mutant Puffins. Ron hadn't bothered to bring any of his usual mission clothes (Kim was in the habit of taking hers everywhere), but he did have his Fearless Ferret costume. So they teamed up with Team Go to thwart the villain. At first, the members of Team Go thought it was kind of cool. Some of them were big Fearless Ferret fans.
But Ron buried himself in the part, and spouted dialogue like "The Fearless Ferret and friends will foil the feats of this fiendish feathery foe!" the whole weekend.
He annoyed Team Go and drove Kim nuts.
Of course, Kim forgot all about her mild embarrassment when Hego became curious and asked why Ron had brought a Fearless Ferret costume with him to Go City.
"I can't answer that," Ron declared.
"Why not?" Hego persisted.
"Because" Ron answered indignantly, "If a married couple want to play 'Fearless Ferret rescues the frisky French maid' in the privacy of their hotel room, well, then that's no one else's business!"
Kim was utterly mortified.
And Team Go couldn't help wondering with amusement just exactly what was in Kim's suitcase back at the hotel.
Back at home, Kim was rebuilding the remains of her research. Because she'd seen what Ray had done with it, she decided to start from scratch, and work on technology that couldn't so easily be used for evil. It was slow going, sometimes monotonous, but her hero duties added a nice variety to her occupation.
Ron was a full time hero and a stay-at-home dad. Nothing else seemed to suit him, and they weren't exactly hard up for cash. Ron found a great deal of fulfillment in the luxury of being able to be home with his children. Though diaper changing wasn't exactly a pleasant activity.
For the first time in their lives, the Twins parted company after high school. Tim went to college and got several degrees in various scientific fields. He returned home and set up the Middleton Aeronautics Laboratory and Research Facility. He and his assistants were working on a faster-than-light propulsion drive system for space travel. Tim married a girl he'd been close to in high school and they were expecting their first child.
Jim went to work full time for Global Justice and quickly rose through the ranks to become a top agent, reporting only to either the President or Senior Director Of Operations Will Du. Doctor Director had moved on to politics. Jim often found himself working together with Ronin or Team Possible. He was not married, but Jim's heart did belong to someone.
She was known simply as Arianna; a supervillian who was constantly trying to take over South America. Jim fell in love with her the first time he thwarted her, and she fell pretty hard for him. Arianna made several unsuccessful attempts to turn away from evil, but found she couldn't help herself. Jim knew there was good in her, he could feel it, and it was always with a heavy heart that he would defeat her plans. Theirs was a love of the most forbidden kind.
They left the pack animals outside and crept into the lair. Wade managed to shut down most of the security systems, but he was having trouble with some of the readings coming from inside. They kept in touch with him via the Kimunicator. There were no detectable floor alarms, and no motion sensors they could find.
They made their way into the large central chamber. Electronic equipment was strewn about haphazardly. Banks of computers hummed quietly. A large view screen occupied one entire wall.
Then Kim spied something near the center of the room. There was a waist-high pedestal of sorts. On it was a bassinet. This was what they had come to investigate.
Team Possible very quietly made their way over to the bassinet and peaked inside. There, asleep, was a baby girl that couldn't have been more than six months old. She had a shock of raven-black hair on her head and her skin was a very pale turquoise; the colors of blue and green blended together.
Suddenly, an alarm. Lights flashed and sirens blared. Shego seemed to drop out of nowhere. She snatched up her daughter and flared up her fists.
"I knew you'd come to take her from me!", Shego cried, clutching the child to her chest with one hand and waving her other fist menacingly. The baby burst into a fit of crying and wailing.
"No," Kim held up her hands in an attempt to appease her foe, "That's not why we're here."
"Lies," Shego shouted.
The alarms abruptly cut off. Drakken appeared on a large terrace above them.
"So, Kim Possible…er…yes, uh…" Drakken stammered, trying to remember something, "Is it still Kim Possible or do you go by Kim….something something? I can't remember your married name."
"Stoppable." Kim said, then turned to her husband, "You know, that really is annoying."
"Try putting up with it for a couple of decades," Ron replied.
"No matter!" Drakken continued, "You will not take the girl from us!"
"Dude," Ron said, "We're not here to take the little girl."
Kim took a step toward Shego.
"Stay back!" she practically screamed. Her fists were still ablaze, there was a wild, desperately defensive look in her eye. She continued to clutch the child to her; the baby's crying got louder and more wretched.
"Stop that!" Came a shrill voice.
Everyone turned to see Ronnie-Anne standing at the entrance to the lair. Her grappler was clipped to her belt, while Rufus stood on her shoulders, his arms folded grimly across his tiny chest. Ronine-Anne had an angry, defiant look on her face. She began to walk in determined strides straight for Shego.
"You stop that now! You're hurting her!" she hollered in an authoritative tone.
No one said anything, and no one moved except Kim who took a protective step toward her daughter. Kim's arm was gently grabbed from behind and held firmly. She turned and looked at her husband.
Wait, his eyes ordered. He sensed something.
Ronnie-Anne marched right up to Shego and stuck her arms out.
"Let me hold her," she ordered.
Shego stared down at the little girl, too surprised to say anything.
"Let me hold her!" Ronnie-Anne said more forcefully. She looked directly into Shego's eyes, unafraid and unmoved.
The light emanating from Shego's fists faded and disappeared. The wild look went out of her eye. Not really knowing why, Shego leaned over and placed her baby into Veronica's arms. After a decade and a half of battle, Shego had finally been conquered by the six-year-old daughter of Kim Possible and Ron Stoppable. And she never even threw a punch.
"You give that baby back to Shego, little girl!" Drakken bellowed from his terrace perch.
"You be quiet, mean blue man!" Ronnie-Anne hollered back.
Drakken clapped a hand to his forehead in frustration, "How many generations of disrespect must I endure from one family?"
Ronnie-Ann ignored him, gently rocked the baby back and forth and made cooing noises. The baby's crying died down, and then ceased altogether.
"This is how I hold my brother," She informed Shego, "He likes it."
The baby began to coo and gurgle in response. Shego was in utter disbelief. Ronnie-Anne lowered her face to the baby's and rubbed noses with her.
"Tickly, tickly, tickly!" she said in her best baby talk.
The baby let out an excited giggle.
Shego's jaw dropped.
"You made her laugh!" Drakken cried, incredulous, "Do it again!"
Ronnie-Anne repeated the process and again, the baby erupted in giggles. Her tiny fists blazed forth in a delighted turquoise glow.
"Marvelous!" Drakken declared gleefully, "She's never done that before!"
Kim quietly stepped up behind her daughter.
"What's her name?" Kim asked softly.
"Kimono", Shego answered. She couldn't take her eyes off her daughter's laughter.
Kim turned to look at Ron, Kimono Drakken?
"You realize the kids at school are just going to call her 'Kim' for short," Ron observed.
Shego looked up abruptly, her eyes wide. It hadn't occurred to her that she'd inadvertently named her daughter after her arch foe.
"No they won't, Ron", Kim insisted, trying not to set Shego off.
Ronnie-Anne continued to make the baby girl giggle and squeal with delight. Ron took out his grappler and hoisted himself up to the terrace where Drakken stood.
"Ronald," he acknowledged dismissively.
"Dude," Ron acknowledged back. He looked up at a huge, ray type weapon.
"What's the ray gun do, Dr. D?" he asked firmly.
Drakken perked up at this. The evil gleam came into his eye and he rubbed his hands together vigorously.
"Watch this," he ordered Ron, then barked, "Shego!"
Shego looked up and uttered an annoyed sigh, "Again? It's not necessary right now!"
"Just once, Shego, just once can you do as I ask? Especially in front of the visitors?" He complained.
Shego rolled her eyes, "Fine!"
She took baby Kimono from Veronica's arms and laid her gently in the bassinet on the pedestal. Then she advised Kim and Ronnie-Anne to step back. Drakken powered up the machine and swung it around to point at his daughter. The Stoppables watched, horrified, as a pale, yellowish beam blazed forth and enveloped the baby. The baby was lifted into the air. Then, suddenly, Kimono's diaper disappeared as if dissipating into thin air. A sort of mist seemed to swirl around the baby, and then suddenly, from that mist a new diaper formed, clean and already fitted to the child. Kimono was set gently back down into the bassinet, and the air was filled with the fresh scent of lemons.
"I call it the Diapertron Three Thousand!" Drakken declared triumphantly.
Ron stared at him for five seconds, "I will give you one million dollars for this thing."
Inexplicably, Drakken lifted his fist to his face, turned his palm outward, and extended his pinky finger until it touched the corner of his mouth.
"One million dollars?" he asked.
"Uh…yeah," Ron replied, perplexed, "Dude, why'd you do that?"
"No idea", Drakken said dismissively.
"Anyway, name your price." Ron continued.
"Are you serious?" Drakken asked.
"Note serious face." Ron said gravely, pointing at himself. "Do you know how much money you could make with this thing?"
"That would be nice", mused Drakken, "We are a little strapped for cash. The mayor of the local village paid me to develop a system that sprays the scent of tropical fruit into the air all over the island."
"I thought that's what it might be," Ron said knowingly.
"Yes, well, the tourists seem to like it. Anyway, the money I got from that job didn't go very far." Drakken informed him.
"Yeah, that's why we're here," Ron responded, "We've got baby supplies tied to some pack animals outside."
"No, thanks," Drakken said with a dismissive wave, "We have plenty of baby supplies already."
"Yes, we know," Ron continued, "We got reports of a bunch of baby equipment thefts. You can't just go out and steal whatever you want."
"How else am I supposed to get it?" Drakken whined.
"Buy it!' Ron said succinctly, "We paid for the stuff you stole, but from now on, you're gonna have to buy all of Kimono's things."
"As I said, we're strapped for cash," Drakken repeated.
"Which is where this thing comes in." Ron said, indicating the Diapertron, "You find a way to make this thing small enough to fit in a house, and you can practically print your own money."
"Been there, done that…the money printing thing, I mean," Drakken declared.
"You know what I'm saying," Ron said testily, "I bet my friend Wade would pay a bunch of money for one of these, too!"
Kim and Shego had been talking quietly, while Ronnie-Anne and Rufus resumed playing with Kimono. The baby was delighted by the antics of the naked mole rat. At the mention of Wade, Kim whipped out her Kimunicator.
"I meant to call Wade and ask him about the Wadebot. Wade? Are you there?"
"Kim! I'm sorry I didn't call you earlier but something's happened to the Wadebot! I've been trying to contact it, but can't seem to!"
Kim looked down at her daughter, who looked back with eyes as innocent as a baby bunny. She then looked to Rufus, who shrugged.
"Override switch," the mole rat said.
Kim glared up at her husband, "You showed her where the override switch was?"
"Three words, Kim, "Ron hollered back, "Puppy. Dog. Pout!"
"Sorry, Wade," Kim said apologetically.
"No problem," Wade chuckled. The Kimunicator blinked off.
Up on the terrace, Drakken had an observant question.
"Am I to understand your daughter employs some sort of pouty expression to manipulate you into getting what she wants?"
"Yes," Ron growled, "But not nearly as much as her mother does."
"Hmmm", Drakken said, thinking, "I might be able to develop a focused beam that, when concentrated on the lower jaw, relaxes all the muscles, rendering a person unable to stick out her lower lip."
Again, Ron stared at him for five seconds. "I'll give you two million dollars for that!"
"Ron!" his wife hollered up at him.
"Sorry, Kim" Ron called down sheepishly, then turned and whispered to Drakken, "We'll talk."
"Understood," Drakken whispered back.
I wish I could say at this point that everyone was friends forever after. But that wouldn't be quite accurate. Drakken and Shego were, at heart, Drakken and Shego. There were one or two more attempts to take over the world in the ensuing years, but Drakken ultimately lost his enthusiasm for it. Shego was a devoted mother. She and Kim battled a few times, but that tapered off as well. Every now and then, the Stoppables would drop in on the lair and check on Kimono and her parents. Eventually – many years later - they would all have to learn to get along, when Kimono and TJ turned them all into in-laws.
An hour after having left the baby supplies at the lair, the Stoppable family was walking down the slope of the mountain, leading the animals back to their owner. The sun was low, almost ready to sink into the ocean. The sky was colored all manner of crimson, and orange and deep purple, the first of the stars were beginning to come out. Veronica was just being informed that she'd be getting a time out when they got home. Both parents were very proud of her, but she still had disregarded their orders to stay at the beach, and as they had discussed, disregarding orders on a mission was against the rules.
Ronnie-Ann pouted for a little while, but got over it. She walked between her parents. Rufus was asleep in her pocket.
"Mommy", Ronnie-Anne spoke up after awhile, "What was your favorite mission?"
Ron's ears perked up, he was curious to know himself.
"This one" Kim said without hesitating.
"Really?", Ron asked, surprised.
"Oh, not them," Kim said with a wave of her head back toward the lair. She stopped walking and so did the others. She picked up her daughter and placed her in Ron's arms, then stepped back, gazing at them.
"You guys are the most difficult, and most rewarding mission I've ever been on. And I've loved every minute of it." She said softly.
"TJ too?" Ronnie-Anne asked.
"TJ too." Kim confirmed.
Veronica giggled and kissed her father on the nose, then held out her arms to her mother. Kim stepped to them and the three of them embraced. Ronnie-Anne then put her hands over her eyes as her parents kissed each other. She had her eyes covered for quite some time.
"I'd be your sidekick any day, KP" Ron said playfully when she finally pulled back from him.
"I know," she said, smiling warmly at him, "But on this particular mission, you've always been my partner. And there could never be any other."
They held each other for another minute or so, then took up the reigns of the animals and began walking down the hill again, toward the setting sun.
"What do you say we get some ice cream on the way home?" Ron suggested.
"Booyah!" Ronnie-Anne squealed with delight.