It Finally Happened

It was almost one thirty in the morning. Curfew was supposed to be at ten, though her father had first intended it to be extended to midnight.

Kim Possible had actually been home by then, though her date and probable boyfriend had not brought her. It was her nearly lifelong best friend who brought her home for a hasty conference with her father about the nature of those Lil Diablo toys Bueno Nacho was so keen to hand out.

Almost an hour later, she was rocketing, literally, one hundred miles west, the front half of her home lying in ruins, racing, so she thought at the time, to rescue that boyfriend. By midnight she was on top of the Bueno Nacho corporate headquarters building, fighting to stop close to a million killer robots from devastating the entire world, fighting back disgust that her enemies had played her, fighting with a revelation that had ripped her whole world, her whole being, tearing down Kim Possible, destroying what she had become over the last few years.

She had been living a lie.

Oh, it had been so easy to lie to herself, to lie to everyone else around her. They all knew better, but she believed the lie, so much so that it became her truth. Her truth had become so strong that, in hindsight, she had been all too willing to throw the best, most wonderful thing in her life away, all because she wanted…no, she needed to have a man on her arm that met the approval of others. She needed a man who made a statement to others, who would ensure her place on the high school food chain.

Her heart be damned.

It took finding that just such a man was hollow, filled with nothing that was real (literally) to hammer home just how much the lie had become her truth. It took the words of the bravest man she knew, a man who wasn't brave because he would always rush headlong into any danger, a man who was brave because he was so filled with fear, a man who had the strength to conquer that fear when he was needed most.

That night she needed him the most. She had been betrayed, humiliated and defeated. Her heart had been ripped out and shown to her. Kim saw that heart, and realized just how empty it was. Empty, worthless, pulled beating from her chest and thrown on the floor, ground into the dust by the boot heel of a hollow man without a heart, without a soul. What he did would have utterly destroyed a lesser person.

Kim Possible was a lesser person until she was lifted up. She had been utterly destroyed, ready to admit the last four years of her life had been for naught. Instead her emptiness was filled, her heart buoyed and restored by three simple words, four simple words that ripped the lie down and trampled it just as her heart had been trampled.

"Out there…in here."

Later she would wonder why, with her heart restored, filled, her soul redeemed and recognized by it's mate, the only thing she could think to utter was "oh!"

Yes, it was an 'oh' moment. It was the purest 'oh' moment imaginable.

Kim Possible became the last person in her world to realize she loved Ron Stoppable with all her heart and soul. She realized that she always had, despite all her attempts to prove to herself otherwise. Missing him on Friday nights when he went to play games, that was consigned to selfishness. Crushing on him when a mad (well, ferociously unethical) scientist's technology had taken control of her emotions? Oh no, he was simply the first person she laid eyes on when it took effect, it couldn't have been the fact she already loved him. Jealousy of a girl he had actually known for about a week? That was just her selfish need for a friend again. No, she couldn't possibly be in love with him, could she?

She was and a weight had been lifted from her soul.

It was one thirty in the morning. The dance was almost over yet there the were. Curfew be damned, food chain be damned. Kim was going to dance with Ron. She was going to dance with him and she was going to do something she had only attempted once before, and that really didn't count, since it was mostly on a dare.

The Walter Nelson affair had definitely left an impression on her. So did the grounding and stern lecture from her father. She had been raised with very old fashioned values. There were things that simply were not done unless you were in love.

Her mind was barely registering the song playing. It just slightly too upbeat for a slow dance, but they didn't care. They were together, dancing as if the greatest love ballads of all time were playing. Somewhere in the back of her mind she recognized the music as being from the same artist she covered at the talent show, but that didn't matter. She was going to do for Ron what she had never done for real.

She kissed him. There was no dare, there was no moodulator. This was a kiss with all the love, all the feeling that was supposed to come with it. It was the kiss that told both of them what they wanted to know. Even when the music ended, even when the main lights of the gym came back on they stayed together. By the time they separated, Kim discovered it was actually possible to split your lip slightly by kissing. She didn't care, she simply put her head on Ron's shoulder, still dancing to the music playing in both their hearts. The ruffles of his shirt were making an impression on the bare flesh of her upper chest. She could smell the rain and sweat still in his hair, but none of that mattered.

For some reason the hairs on the back of her neck stood up and she opened her eyes to behold Mr. Barkin glaring at the two of them, his arms crossed. Yet, somehow, his expression wasn't fixed into his usual seemingly military scowl. Oddly enough, there seemed to be amusement in his eyes, that, and possibly a little bit of moisture welling there. Still, when he spoke it was his same deep, gruff baritone that could command respect even from a behemoth like Bike Mike.

"Stoppable, Monique said to tell you she's taking that little pink freaky thing of yours home with her."

"Uh, thanks Mr. Barkin." Was all he could stammer.

"Now in case the two of you haven't noticed, the Prom ended some thirty minutes ago. I'd say last call, but some of us have lives tomorrow."

Message delivered and understood. They walked out of the gym the way they had come in, only this time instead of her hand being engulfed in his, their fingers were entwined. They walked past the parking lot, past a few clusters of students still milling around their cars, not quite ready to take their dates home or to wherever they intended to take them next. They walked past a white smear of fire extinguisher foam, not quite comprehending it was the smoking remains of his blue scooter after finally giving up the ghost while they danced inside. (a couple of quick thinking students had extinguished the flames and the fire department had not been called.)

They lost all sense of direction as they walked, their minds no longer working that way. They just looked at each other, their eyes looking past what they looked like on the outside, past their clothing and her makeup being thrown together. They were looking at each other and seeing their true selves.

They say fortune favors the foolish. That may be true, but fortune also favors those who are fools in love. Even that was not accurate, because they certainly did not feel foolish, unless it was to consider how they had felt up to this point. Somehow, by some design that was beyond them at the moment, or simply by lucky happenstance, they found themselves on a bluff overlooking their end of town. They were not so high up they could only see the lights of the Middleton suburbs, but it was still a beautiful sight.

Not that they looked at it very much. They kissed like they had discovered one of the universe's great truths and in a way, they had. They only stopped twice, once as Kim started shivering slightly in the late-spring coolness and once as the sun started rising, framed in their view of their homes. For the first time since they left the gym they spoke.

"I love you, KP." He said.

"Ronnie, I love you." Kim said at precisely the same time. They leaned in to kiss once more as they heard a car pull up behind them.

It was a bronze Jaguar, the same one a trio of killer robots had ripped the roof off of. That meant only one thing…

…she was so busted.

Kim looked at Ron and smiled as not only her father, but his got out to collect their children.

She knew what was coming next, but it was worth it.

Oh, so worth it!

Kim Possible, all related characters and situations are © Disney.