Vicky returns to Dimmsdale after a four year absence and Timmy is curious to see if she has changed.

Hearts in Winged Cages

The sixteen year old whom everyone thought looked surprisingly a lot like the long lost Gah, sat in his living room couch watching TV. Of course Timmy Turner could not be in any way related to Gah, the legendary model who mysteriously rose to fame and disappeared just as quickly six years ago. He was alone at home again and feeling quite bored. He found some Maho Mushi reruns on TV and watched them to pass the time.

"Are you alright sweetie?" The pink haired fairy looked concerned. Wanda and Cosmo had been quietly sitting on the couch next to him, keeping him company as he requested. His godmother had noticed the look on his face, sad, almost nostalgic.

"I'm alright Wanda, I was just thinking," Timmy closed his eyes, letting the memories flow into his mind. He remembered when he was twelve and Vicky was eighteen. She was to leave for college and he insisted that he didn't need another babysitter. His parents actually gave him a chance to prove that he was mature enough to take care of himself, which he easily proved with a little help from Cosmo and Wanda. From that time forward, things were fine for a while, until he actually started to miss Vicky and started thinking that maybe she wasn't as bad as he had imagined.

"I was thinking too," Cosmo tried hard, until smoke came out from his ears. "Actually, thinking is hard. I think I will stop now, oh no I just thought!" He held his head and made a bag of ice appear on top of it, "that's better."

Timmy smiled; Cosmo and Wanda always cheered him up. He was about to say something, when he heard what sounded like a car outside, followed by the sound of the front door being opened, signaling his parents had arrived. Cosmo and Wanda immediately disappeared, returning to their place in the fish bowl in Timmy's room where they waited for him to come upstairs.

Timmy greeted his parents happily as he always did when they returned from work, but today something was different. Today they appeared to be in an excellent mood despite being tired. "You're in a good mood today, did something happen?"

"You know how it rained last night and there were puddles of water all over the sidewalk in the morning?" Timmy's dad asked.

Timmy already knew what was coming. None the less he replied, "yes, I remember."

"This morning Dingleberg slipped!" Timmy's dad cheered.

"I know dad, you told me in the morning before I left for school and called the office several times to have the message delivered to me again in my classroom," that was rather embarrassing.

"This is a day to be remembered!" Timmy's dad cried tears of joy. "We must celebrate!"

"That is the other good news," Timmy's mom informed, "your father and I got the next week off from work!"

Timmy's face lit up upon hearing those words. He would have to make a wish that cancelled school for the week then maybe they could go somewhere. "That's great!"

"That's not all!" Timmy's dad continued.

"We're going away on vacation!" His mom finished the sentence.

"And you're staying here because you have to go to school!" Both parents said at the same time.

Timmy's smile was replaced with a frown. "But I want to go with you!"

"Absolutely not, we can't have you miss an entire week of school," Timmy's mom insisted.

Many possibilities came to Timmy's mind. Over the years he had come up with a few wishes to avoid going to school for a few days. But before he could decide on one, his dad's next words made him change his mind. "That's why Vicky's coming over to babysit while your mother and I go celebrate!"

Timmy was surprised to hear this. "Vicky? But I thought she was away at collage and besides I'm sixteen, I don't need a babysitter." He immediately regretted his words. He was curious about what happened to Vicky in the four years she was gone and actually wanted to see her again.

Luckily, he didn't change his parent's minds. "Vicky is coming to babysit the house, not you. This way you won't have any wild parties while we're gone," his mom reasoned. "I'm sure you'll be happy to see Vicky again. She must have missed you too." Timmy wasn't sure if happy was the right word, but he would at least satisfy his curiosity. As for Vicky missing him, that was possible only if she hasn't found someone else to do chores.

xoxox xox xoxox

The next day, his parents were up bright and early with their suitcases packed and Timmy was off to school. From what he was told, Vicky would arrive later that night and stay for the week at the Turner's house. They didn't say why she didn't stay at her own family's house, but Timmy decided maybe it was best not to ask.

His parents had dragged him off to the airport to say goodbye to Vicky when she left four years ago when she went to another state to attend collage, but her parents and sister weren't there. Maybe she told them not to go or maybe they just didn't. Timmy's mom had had told him to give his dear babysitter a goodbye hug. He did, only because he knew she couldn't do anything evil with his parents around. Yet somehow, having all the oxygen squished out of his lungs by Vicky, felt almost nice. At least until he started to turn blue and his dad thought he was feeling blue because Vicky was leaving.

Timmy watched as heavy rain fell. He had been sitting in front of the living room window for quite some time. "I don't think she's coming," he concluded running out of patience.

"Yay! She's not coming!" Cosmo cheered throwing confetti and making party hats appears on their heads, which Wanda got rid of with a wave of her wand.

"No Cosmo, that's a bad thing," Timmy clarified what Wanda had already noticed.

"How come? I thought you didn't like Vicky," Cosmos asked.

"I'm curious about how she's been the past four years," Timmy walked away from the window towards the kitchen to get a snack.

"She must be done with her bachelor's degree by now," Wanda mused. "Maybe her college years made her change for the better."

"Maybe," Timmy considered the possibly. "Or maybe she's worse."

Between one cookie and another, the clock had reached nine in the night. Timmy had given up on waiting for Vicky. She would probably show up on the last day of the week, only to collect her money and pretend she was there the entire time. He should be happy about it. That way he could see her for a short time and satisfy his curiosity, but she wouldn't stay long enough to make him miserable like in years past. The rain had only stopped for about an hour only to return stronger than before, accompanied by cold wind. It looked like a storm, a big one. At least it wasn't raining icy minivans this time.

All that could be heard was the rain, wind, the TV and Cosmo eating popcorn, then suddenly, another sound tried to make itself be heard over the others. It was a voice, "open the door twerp, before a knock it down!" This was followed by the sound of someone punching and kicking the door.

Timmy jumped in his seat, gripping the remote control, pressing the off button. She was here, it was unmistakably Vicky who was at the door. Cosmo and Wanda became flies and quietly watched as Timmy quickly headed for the door. He opened it to find a red haired young woman dressed rather formally and business-like, as if she came from a meeting and didn't have time to change. "Vicky?"

"Get out of my way twerp, some people don't like standing in the rain," Vicky pushed him aside, throwing the water that had accumulated in her hair at his face. Yes, it was the same Vicky alright.

Timmy closed the door as soon as she was inside, to prevent the wind from throwing more water inside the house. He stood there for a moment, looking at her with no idea what to say. She studied him also. She was trying to figure out why she suddenly remembered Gah. She mentally kicked herself for comparing the two. Timmy noticed that Vicky carried a large suitcase, most likely containing her clothes. He wondered if she had enough room for flame throwers in there, but soon dismissed the thought. He expected her to bring a little more luggage than just one suitcase, even if it was big. "The guest room is this way," he walked towards the stairs and waited at the base of the stairs for Vicky to follow.

"I know where the guest room is twerp. I was your babysitter for four years; I know where everything is in this house. Out of my way twerp," Vicky walked past him up the stairs.

Timmy returned to his previous place on the couch and waited. "Looks like she hasn't changed after all," Wanda commented as she and Cosmo appeared in their true forms.

"You know what they say" Cosmo drew a blank and couldn't remember what he was going to say. "What do they say?"

"Cosmo, you're an idiot," Wanda shook her head hopelessly.

"You're right, they do say that!" Cosmos agreed.

"I think there is something different, I just don't know what," Timmy mused.

After a short time passed, Vicky came back down the stairs wearing more casual clothing and a towel on her head to dry her hair. Cosmo and Wanda entered a family portrait, their faces appearing in place of that of Timmy's parents. Vicky sat on the couch next to Timmy and continued drying her hair as much as she could with the towel.

Once she was satisfied with the result, she tossed it aside, assuming Timmy would pick it up later. They sat in silence, neither knowing what to say first. Vicky thought about ordering Timmy to do some chores for old time's sake, yet at the same time she didn't really feel like it.

"You came back, just like you said." Timmy remembered her last words to him, whispered menacingly at the airport.

It took the red head a moment to realize what he meant. "So you did remember my warning."

"It's been four years since you left, can we be friends this time?" There was no reply. "Are you going to send me to do chores again?"

"I should," Vicky chuckled. "Maybe I'm just a little tired today, but tomorrow you better be ready, twerp."

"Why do you even call me twerp? I'm taller than you now," Timmy pointed out.

"It won't help you if I decide to send you to do chores right now," Vicky gave him a sinister look, which still made Timmy shudder.

Timmy stayed quiet until Vicky picked up the TV's remote control and turned it on. Once her attention was on channel surfing, Timmy looked at the family portrait. He had to know what was on her mind, the curiosity was killing him, he knew there was something different, even if all signs pointed out she was the same. "I wish I could go into Vicky's mind and see what's bothering her," he whispered.

The next thing he knew, Timmy was inside Vicky's mind with Cosmo and Wanda floating by his side. "I don't understand. This place doesn't look like anything I saw when I was inside Vicky last time."

"Maybe it's because this place didn't exist then," Wanda reasoned. "It must have appeared sometime later."

"But how is that possible?" The place didn't have a solid structure, everything just floated around. A few hearts floated, trapped in winged cages, flying all over the place. It didn't look like Timmy was standing on anything. He was floating along with everything else, as the background changed colors endlessly.

"It's not too big, but maybe it can grow." Cosmo opened the cage, letting the little heart float out. "One for each person she ever cared about, at least a little." There were few and they were all caged and small, but they existed.

Timmy was too surprised to speak and Wanda was worried, "Cosmo you shouldn't be freeing it. Shouldn't Vicky do it?"

"It'll hurt her if it stays this way," Cosmo insisted.

Wanda hugged her husband. "I know you're only trying to help but some things can't be done by magic. Actually, why hasn't Da Rules appeared?"

Cosmo shrugged. "Because it's okay to interfere this time?" Another caged heart few by and Cosmo tried to release it. "This one's locked!"

"Now I get it, we can only open the ones that were already unlocked by Vicky." Wanda concluded. "But most of them are still locked." She looked at Timmy who had been very quiet.

"I'm surprised," Timmy admitted. It looked like Vicky had changed after all. Apparently, she was capable of caring for other human beings, just a little, but it was a start.

End

Disclaimer, I don't own Fairly Odd Parents.

xoxox xox xoxox

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