Keep the Home Fires Burning
By Captainkodak1

Ron stood at the fireplace as he poked at the fire. One of the things they wanted in their bedroom was fireplace so they could snuggle in front of it on chilly nights. Ron turned to glance at the bedside clock. It was nearly one in the morning, and Kim still had not gotten home from work. He stared at the muted TV that helped illuminate the room. The show did not interest him; he just did not feel like changing the channel. He knew the coming fight might be one for the record books, or with luck, everything would be peaceable. He really did not know why he was trying to keep the fire burning, it was going out just like their marriage was. The weather had turned as chilly as their relationship had.

Kim had started working longer hours these past few months. Whenever he asked her what was going on at the office, she just mentioned various excuses; new agents needing more training, the upcoming budget review, or any number of agents out, and she was covering for them. He had pressed her about it earlier this month. She screamed that he didn't trust her. That she had been holding the marriage together, when all he did was eat and watch TV when he came home from work. Then she would start in on his eating habits. She had gone on a health kick with him about the same time she started working late. He knew that he had gained a little weight, and that he was having trouble keeping up with her. He couldn't help it. As the owner of the restaurant, when he left he wanted something different, so he would hit one of his favorite places. He couldn't help that they were not healthiest places; he just loved the food.

Late one evening earlier in the week, he had left home after donning his ninja outfit. It was a little snug because he had let himself go a little, but he still had it. He was waiting in the shadows of the office when Kim came out. She was with Darin Harris, one of the new agents. Ron knew all about Darin, he was one of the "real" hotties who had just joined the district office. Rumors were that he was cultivating his superiors, including Kim. Ron watched as Kim was laughing at something Darin had said. They both approached their cars and got in. They pulled out of the parking lot, with Kim in the lead. Ron followed them on his motorcycle set to stealth mode, and soon the cars pulled into one of the apartment complexes on the edge of Middleton. Ron did not follow any further, watching from a distance as they went into an apartment. An hour later, Darin left, buttoning his coat. Then Kim came out and got in her car and left. Ron returned home quickly so that he would be there when Kim got home. She did not return home for another couple of hours. Ron did a little research on the apartment later. It had been rented two months earlier. The name on the lease was one of the cover names Kim used when she needed to.

Tonight he followed again, carrying the night vision camera he had purchased. He taped her leaving the office and going to the apartment with Darin. Then, later, both of them leaving. He had the tape in the DVD player waiting for her to come home. He really did not want to think of what she was doing in the apartment or after she had left the apartment. She never returned home for a least two or three hours after leaving the apartment.

He heard the door open and shut quietly. Then there were the soft steps coming up the hall. The bedroom door opened slowly, and Kim silently came through the doorway. He would wait to see what she said. He really didn't want to confront her now. He would give her every chance.

"Another long night?" He asked, not looking at her.

"Yeah, you how it is with these new agents, I swear they get younger all the time, and have less sense." Kim said, trying to smile.

"Anyone special need any special tutoring?" Ron asked.

Kim took in a breath and stared at Ron then turned to go into the bathroom.

Ron stared at the TV and saw a special report coming on. He turned the volume up.

"OH, MAN, look at this!"

"What is that?" Kim asked from the bathroom.

"Authorities are labeling the fire as suspicious in origin. The Rib Basket was a favorite among many Middleton residents. This is the fifth restaurant fire in as many weeks. According to local fire officials, the earlier fires were proven to be arson. City leaders are calling for residents of Middleton to be vigilant and to report anything that looks out of order. This is Dan Harris, reporting."

Ron laid his head back. "AHHH, MAANNN. Now the Rib Basket. That really tanks. First it was Pizza Palace, then the Burger Castle, after that both Bueno Nachos went up. Now, this. All my favorite places."

Kim came in the room wearing a tank top and sweat pants. "Well Ron, I can't say I'm sorry. How many times have I asked you to be more careful with your diet? The GJ doctor has already told you that if you don't change your eating habits, you will be in trouble. You eat that stuff all the time, you just don't exercise like you used to. Face it, Ron. You have let yourself go. Maybe now, with these places gone, you'll take better care of yourself."

Ron turned his head with a snap and stared straight into her green eyes. "And if I don't what are you gonna do about it. Trade me in for a newer model, like Darin, maybe?"

Kim's emerald eyes grew wide, and then filled with tears.

"I followed you tonight, Kim. Right to those apartments. I guess you had to give him some special tutoring."

Kim's mouth dropped open.

"Don't even try to say a thing, Kimmie," Ron hissed.

Kim's lips drew down into a hard line as she whirled and strode from the room. The door slammed with enough force that their wedding picture actually fell off the wall. The glass shattered as it hit the floor.

Ron sat there for a few moments after he turned the TV off. The darkness was soon broken when the blue lights of several police cars pulled up in front of their home. 'Or at least he hoped it was still going to be their home when the sun came up.' Ron thought.

He got off bed, and walked around the broken glass to open the bedroom door. He went out into the hall and toward the living room. Kim was standing there looking wide eyed at the cars lining the street. They both jumped when there was a knock at the door.

Ron stepped past Kim to open the door. Detective John Graham and his partner Jim Blaine of the Middleton Police were standing in the doorway. Behind them were a number of other officers and couple of men Ron recognized as officers in the Fire Department. Darin stood there also in handcuffs and flanked by two more officers.

Detective Graham presented his badge. "I am sorry for this Mr. Stoppable, but we need to speak to your wife."

Ron turned around to look at Kim. Her hands covered her mouth and tears were pouring from her face. He turned back to face Detective Graham. "May I ask why, Detective?"

John held up some papers. "We have warrants for her arrest. We have evidence that she is responsible for the recent restaurant arsons."

Ron whirled back to look at Kim as the officers came into the home.

"Kimberly Stoppable, you are under arrest for suspicion of arson." The officers took Kim's arms and pulled them behind her back. Ron heard the snicks of the handcuffs closing. One of the officers started to read Kim her rights.

"KP?" Ron asked.

"I had to do it, Ron." Kim blubbered. "You wouldn't stay away from those places, and it was killing you. I love you, Ron. I wanted to spend a long life with you, but as long as those places were running you would die. They had to be stopped! Darin was helping me. He got the materials, and then would back me up when I went in."

Ron stared as the officers escorted her out the door. Camera lights illuminated the front yard. "I did it for you Ron, I did it for YOU!" Kim screamed as they placed her in the back of a patrol car.

Ron suddenly sat up in bed, gasping. He looked around trying to catch his breath. Kim sat up in the bed next to him. "RON? What's wrong?" she asked, taking his face in her hands. He looked into her eyes shining with love and concern. He pulled her into a hug that made her gasp. "AIR, RON, AIR, I need air!"

Ron let her go, and she caught her breath. "Ron, did you have a nightmare?"

"Boy, did I!" Ron sighed as he placed his head in his hands. He proceeded to tell her of his dream as she rubbed his shoulders. Afterwards she gave him a slow, warm kiss. "It's a thought, Ron, but I would never do that. But, you do need to watch what you eat. I am concerned. I saw the results of your last checkup."

Ron sighed. "Yeah KP, I know. I'll try and do better. It's funny. If you had to, I bet you would burn those places down."

Kim turned over and pulled the sheet up to her neck. "I don't think that will be necessary."

Alarm bells started in Ron's head. "KP, what did you do?"

She turned back to him with a impish smile, her eyes gleaming in the moonlight. "Let's just say I made some posters with your picture and name on it, and put them up in the break rooms and offices of all those restaurants. They say; "Wanted." "The person or persons who serve this man food he should not eat! The first who does will participate in a demonstration of all sixteen styles of Kung-fu."

Ron swallowed. "You didn't!"

Kim's eyes glowed with a joy that told him his answer.

"NOOOOOO!"

Ron jolted awake, and sat up in his bed alone in his room. He looked around. He was home in his own bed. "Wow, what a dream. Two dreams. I was MARRIED to KIM? "Now that would be badical," he mumbled. He rolled back into bed, and tried to dream of what life would be like being married to Kim.

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Ron held the door open for Kim as they entered Bueno Nacho. Kim took his hand and gave him a somber look as they approached the counter. Ron motioned for Kim to order first. She sighed as she watched him scanning the menu licking his lips. "Hi, Ned, let me have a grilled chicken salad with low fat dressing and a diet coke."

Kim turned to Ron as he stepped up to the counter. Rufus jumped out of his pants pocket rubbing his paw together with glee. "Hoooboy, naco, cheese." He squecked.

"The usual, Ron?" Ned asked.

Ron shook his head. "No, Ned, the Ronster is turning over a new leaf. I'll have the grilled chicken salad, the low fat dressing, and bottled water."

Kim looked at Ron in shock as entire restaurant became quiet. Ned stood at the counter, his mouth moving, but not making a sound. Rufus fainted and fell off the counter. Kim gave out a squeal and planted a kiss on Ron's cheek. Ned continued to stare at Ron. The cheese machine sprayed cheese all over the aisle, the menu sign cracked from top to bottom, and the drink machine blew all of the nozzles off and they sprayed soda all over the serving area. The cash register drawer went crazy opening and shutting, and the receipt slot shot paper tape into the air.

Later, after helping the staff clean up the wreckage in the front of the restaurant, Kim and Ron got their orders and went straight to their booth. Kim placed her tray down, and sat in Ron's lap while they ate. Afterwards Ron opened the door for Kim, the sun started to come out from behinds the clouds. Kim slipped her arm around Ron, and then slid her hand down to stick it in his back pocket. She gave a little squeeze and a sigh. Then, walking on her tiptoes, gave Ron another kiss on the cheek. Ron slipped his arm around her shoulders and pulled her close. The Teen Heroes walked home with Kim laying her head on Ron's shoulder. Rufus grumbled from Ron's pocket holding the carrot sticks that Ron insisted he eat.

Alrighty, just another story from the mind of Captainkodak1.

I hope you all enjoyed this little fic. Drop me a note or a review, I would appreciate it.