Boilerplate Disclaimer: The Disney Co. owns all the various characters from the Kim Possible series. Any and all registered trade names are property of their respective owners. Cheap shots at celebrities constitute fair usage.

Chapter 4 - The Present

Kim started suddenly, "We've been up here way too long, it's getting dark and the girls shouldn't have been out so long without anyone watching them."

The two hurried down the stairs, but as they went onto the porch they found a dark figure already there, watching the children out playing on the grass. Kim froze momentarily, unable to see clearly after moving from the light of the house to the darkness of the porch.

"Great parenting skills there, princess."

"How long have you been here?"

"Long enough to see them being neglected. This isn't the safest neighborhood in the world."

"Oh, yeah. Convicted felons can walk the streets freely around here. Is there a really safe neighborhood any place in the world to raise kids?"

"No, not really," Shego laughed. "Never has been. But there is an all pervasive case of nostalgia going around. People like to imagine that life was better once upon a time."

Ron left the two women on the porch and went out to play with the children. Shego raised an eyebrow, "So, why were they out here without an adult watching?"

Kim sighed, "My mom was cleaning out my old room. She told me to bring home a lot of the things I'd left behind. I was going through it with Ron, realizing what a huge part he is of my life."

Shego slapped her forehead, "Doh! Really? Like anyone who hasn't talked with either of you for five minutes wouldn't know that?"

"You're exceedingly rude."

"You're painfully oblivious. Everyone can see how much you two mean to each other."

Kim smiled, "But it's still fun to sit down and review your life history."

Shego was silent for a minute. "Fun for you, maybe. Do you have any idea how jealous I get of you and Ron?"

"Really?"

"Really. You two have history. I would have done anything to have a Ron in my life." Then she startled Kim by breaking into song, "If I had been so lucky as to have a steady brother
"Who could talk to me as we are talking now to one another –
"Who could give me good advice when he discovered I was erring
"(Which is just the very favour which on you I am conferring),
"My existence would have made a rather interesting idyll,
"And I might have lived and died a very decent indiwiddle."

"I already think you're crazy, you don't have to prove anything to me."

"Ruddigore, Gilbert and Sullivan. But seriously, who knows how I might have been different with that kind of an anchor."

"Like an anchor around your neck?"

Shego glared at the redhead, "You know what I mean. Like an anchor to give me stability."

"To hold you in place, keep you from getting ahead?"

"I'm going to tell Ron you said that. You know what I mean."

Kim laughed, "I know what you mean, and you're right. I'm very lucky to have him." Kim sang a couple lines from an old hymn, "We have an anchor that keeps the soul
"Steadfast and sure while the billows roll."

"Knock it off, Possible, or I really will tell Ron you're putting him in place of Jesus Christ. I'm sure that's what every Jewish guy wants to hear."

Kim giggled, and Shego sighed. "I think he is what keeps you sane. Do you realize how fucked up your life could have been without Ron? Rocket scientist father, brain surgeon mother, the life you lead… Want to talk about how your brothers turned out?

"I'd rather not."

"Yeah, well, thank Ron you're as close to sane as you are. Not that you weren't good for him too."

Kim stared at the trio out in the yard before answering softly, "He's taught me a lot. I hope he knows that."

The watchers fell silent, listening to the sounds of the two real children and the blond man who was still one at heart.

"Ron found something in one of the boxes we were looking through. It… It was something I had wanted to forget. Maybe it was something I had really forgotten. It had to do with you."

"With me? A piece of rope from the first time I tied you up?"

"No, something years before that. Do you have any idea how many autographed pictures you sent out when you were a hero?"

"I was never a hero. I was a girl who didn't have the strength to stand up for herself. I let my brother run my life."

"There were a lot of us who thought you were a hero. My mom and dad got me a picture of you one Christmas-"

"God, you should have burned it."

"I thought I had. But Ron found it."

"You can burn it now."

"Maybe I will. It made me think about why I hated you for so long. I really felt like you had betrayed me… Betrayed all of us who thought you were a hero."

Shego stared silently out to the three dark shapes laughing and playing on the grass. "I was never a hero."

"So, were you never a criminal either?"

"Yes, I was a criminal," She sighed. "I still prefer the term mercenary. I ran as far as I could from Hego and Team Go, psychologically as well as physically. I think he was still running my life. Then I was doing things just to hurt him, I still wasn't thinking for myself."

"What did you want?"

"I never thought about it at the time. I should have. But I know what I want now. I want a place to call home. I want someone to come home to. I want two kids. I want the damn courts to return my right to vote one of these years. Felons are as interested in good government as anyone else."

Kim laughed, "I told you why I hated you for so long. Why did you hate me?"

Shego leaned back on the steps and thought for a minute, "Oh, I had lots of reasons to hate you. I hated you because you were good. I hated you because you were a threat. Everyone thought I was the best, but you actually beat me once or twice-"

"Only once or twice?"

"Yeah, only once or twice."

"What color is the sky in your world?"

Shego glared at her, "Anyway, I think I saw some of me in you. You reminded me of something I hated and wanted to forget. I wondered who was manipulating you, who was making you go out and do the 'hero thing.' I hated your parents for letting you get into danger. I hated you for not thinking for yourself. It took me a long time to learn you really get into this hero nonsense. It is what you want to do with your life."

"Nice to know you finally accept my 'hero nonsense.'"

"I just don't like the idea of you getting hurt."

"Your home is the most dangerous place in your life. Most accidents happen in the bathroom."

"Really? I would have guessed most accidents happen in the bedroom, or maybe the back seat of a car out on a country road. I heard about a redhead who was born almost two years premature-"

"Hush," Kim blushed. Then she called across the darkening yard, "Girls, time to start thinking about bed."

"Ah, mom, just a little more time."

"Ron!" Shego yelled across the yard, "Here's a twenty. Go buy the girls a milkshake before bedtime."

"No!" Kim shouted, "The sugar will have them bouncing off the walls."

"Urban legend!" Shego bellowed. "Playing doesn't tire them out - it just gets them excited. Give them a snack, the blood goes to their tummies and they sleep better. Read them a book to quiet them down. The sugar thing isn't true."

"Is too!"

"Is not!"

"Is too!"

"Uh, if you two will stop setting a bad example for the children I am going to take them into kitchen and blend a couple fruit smoothies for them."

The trio came in, each girl holding one of his hands as he walked up to the house. The redhead was tugging on his arm, "Hurry up, daddy!"

As they reached the porch Ron turned them loose, "Girls, go to the kitchen and get out the yogurt, bananas, strawberries, and anything else you want. I want to talk to mommy for a minute, I'll be right in."

"Can I get out the orange juice?"

"Sure."

"How about blueberries?"

"If you can find any. I thought you finished them on your breakfast cereal yesterday."

"There's another box. I think."

"Well, go in and look for them. I'll come in in just a second. Oh, I picked up some canned peaches at the grocery store. Look in the pantry if you want them."

As the two girls went into the house Ron turned to the women on the porch.

"Does it bother you when Kasy calls me Daddy?" he asked Kim.

"No, a lot of people think you are."

"Well, you're going to have to explain where they came from to them eventually."

"Ron," Shego interrupted. "They're years away from normal sex education. I want to be there when Kim sits them down and tries to explain where they came from."

"Oh, you'll be there partner. I promise you, you'll be there," Kim said.

"You two have two beautiful daughters," Ron said.

"We know, but we don't need the world pointing to them as freaks. And if Kasy wants to call you daddy because she thinks every kid has a daddy it just makes it easier for everyone."

"And someday," Shego said, "there will be little Stoppables calling you Daddy. And you really will be.
"God, Ron, you could almost have a harem with all the women you have panting after you. Just pick one and settle down."

Ron grinned, "Ah, but then I have to disappoint all the others. But gotta run, I need to go spend quality time with two of my favorite little ladies right now."

"Leave some smoothies for us!" Kim shouted as Ron went inside. "We are so lucky to have him here with us," she said to Shego as the door closed behind Ron.

"But some day he will graduate from college, and our little Ron will spread his wings and fly away from the nest."

"We can't keep him barefoot and chained to the stove in the kitchen?"

"No, Kim. As wonderful as that would be it would be wrong. I'm almost certain slavery has been outlawed. When he decides what he wants to do he is allowed to do it - we just get to exploit him until then." The pale woman fell silent for a minute, then added, "Ron gave you balance. He kept you sane."

"God, I really wish you'd had a Ron. You've still got issues Shego."

The older woman grinned. "Yeah, you've got Ron keeping you sane and me pushing you the other way. You should have listened to the old saying."

"Which one?"

"Never go to bed with a woman who has more problems than you do."

"I'm a hero, I unselfishly throw myself at a problem, or on top of a her."

"And, heroic soul that you are, there is no pleasure for you in any of these acts of kindness… Wait a minute, you had a picture of me?"

"Yeah, you even signed to me personally. You must have done dozens of those at a sitting."

"I was your hero? We've been living together for four years and this is the first I've heard about this?"

"Well, you're always so full of yourself I didn't want to say anything."

"Seriously, why did I never hear this before?"

"Because now that you know I'm never going to hear the end of it."

"Actually, I'd have probably been happy never to hear about that."

"Why? You really don't want to know you were an influence in my life?"

"That wasn't me. That was a part of my life I try very hard to forget. I really don't like reminders of those days. Please, get rid of the picture."

"There is nothing good you remember about those years?"

Shego paused for a minute. "Flight training. I had some damn fine instructors work with me so I could fly the Go jet. They said I was a natural. I love to fly. Maybe I could have been a pilot - not that it can happen now with my record." Shego leaned over and kissed Kim, "Of course, if I'd been a pilot I'd have never met you. And who would you have had to inspire you?"

"Okay, that's one good thing about you being bad. You know, thinking about that picture, you were really cute at sixteen."

"Burn the picture, Kim."

"I think I'll have it framed."

"Burn the picture, Kim. I mean it. Jesus, people think that I'm evil."

"I'll hang it up in my cubicle at Global Justice."

"Seriously, Kim. The choices are burn the picture or shoot me."

"Umm, tough call. Can I get back to you on that one?" Before Shego could reply Kim stood up. "Let's go into the kitchen. Ron and the girls will drink all the smoothies if we aren't quick enough."

So the years spin by and now the girl is twenty
Though her dreams have lost some grandeur coming true
There'll be new dreams, maybe better dreams and plenty
Before the last revolving year is through.

And the seasons they go 'round and 'round
And the painted ponies go up and down
We're captive on the carousel of time
We can't return, we can only look behind
From where we came
And go round and 'round and 'round
In the circle game

The End

NoDrogs created Kasy Ann and Sheki Go Possible in A Small Possibility. Their origin has been utterly altered for my stories.

The Carousel of Time was originally written for a GWA Guess the author contest. The theme was how did Kim Possible become the hero that she is? It is not written to be part of the Best Enemies storyline, but can be read as a part of that series if you wish. If you want to consider it part of the series I recommend you see it happening between An Equinox Carol and Monkey Business III. At the moment I don't regard it as part of the series, and I hope my opinion is still worth something in regard to my stories.