Fire: a state, process, or instance of combustion in which fuel or other material is ignited and combined with oxygen, giving off light, heat, and flame.
EVE, the Extra-terrestrial Vegetation Evaluator, wasn't so sure about the definition of fire: it used to be the end result of using her quasar ion cannon; but now, fire meant so much more to her.
It was a feeling both she and WALL•E, her partner; had in common…
The first time she had grabbed that tiny silver-laden box from WALL•E's collection, she couldn't process its function or directive. Just by poking the box's mechanism she discovered that it emitted a dim light. Her sensors picked up that it was the same substance that engulfed the old BnL cruise liners in a fit of her fury. Upon discovering the box she became curious and was shocked that the box could produce a gentle fire; more soft, warm, and inviting than the gargantuan flames she had started. She hadn't even realized that WALL•E was looking at the lighter in the same way…of course…the fire wasn't the only thing that grabbed his attention….
Now that they had returned to Earth, fire was the farthest thing from EVE's mind. All the robots were given a new directive: "re-colonize and revive the planet." And while they took their new objective with pride and renewed purpose, EVE much preferred having downtime with WALL•E.
Even the renegade robots took pleasure in their downtime by hanging out with WALL•E and EVE. They were spending so much time together that they eventually decided to stick around and build a community of their own— right next door to WALL•E and EVE's home. EVE was, understandably, unsure of the idea, but WALL•E had reassured her in his own cute manner that things would be all right. Besides, WALL•E was happy to have so many more friends, and EVE couldn't argue against it, considering he had been alone for so long.
But as the months passed, EVE took notice how WALL•E's work shifts doubled, reducing their "together-time" to almost nothing. Even the other robots were sad that their playmate was hardly around. But soon enough all of them felt the effects of doubling work shifts and longer hours. The Captain had announced that now was the time to "boost up" production so that farming could take place sooner. The robots did as they were told because they recognized the importance of this directive. As a result they hardly had any days off.
And EVE hated it. She would've given anything for a day off. She knew inwardly that this phase of the project would pass, but nevertheless, she couldn't help but feel impatient about the whole thing. For one day she just wanted to be…
Her desire to have a day with WALL•E grew stronger and so one day she decided to go against her directive. One day off wasn't going to hurt anything, she had thought. So she typed in a message to one of her robot neighbors, D-FIB, to be delivered to the Captain. She only hoped that the Captain would understand and forgive her for her negligence.
It didn't help that WALL•E still had work that day, but she had already decided to wait for him, no matter how late he'd come home. She figured she had plenty of time to get the trailer primed and ready. She was even lucky that M-O and PR-T had a rare day off so she enlisted their help to clean the trailer.
"Yuyuyuyuyuyu!" M-O squealed with glee as he cleaned and scrubbed all of their prized possessions. EVE gathered items strung about on the floor while PR-T cleaned up the mess caused by their pet cockroach. Work gave WALL•E and EVE little time to make the place neat on a regular basis.
As they continued to sort stuff, EVE came upon the stack of cigarette lighters. She grabbed one and flipped it open, setting the spark off. She stared at the flame and once again relived the moment when she first discovered it. She sighed and carefully placed it back in its spot.
But as she placed it back, she was struck with an epiphany…
She rummaged for WALL•E's battered Hello Dolly tape, causing looks of confusion between M-O and PR-T. She fast forwarded it to a scene where the young couples were all having dinner at a nice restaurant. On the center of the table she saw a tiny glass bowl enclosing a small fire.
Observing the scene she saw how the main guy, Cornelius Hack, became flushed with his love interest at the dinner. Although she didn't understand the scene in its entirety, she identified with his love interest, and; thought musingly, that WALL•E probably related to Cornelius.
She stared back at the lighter and wondered if she could impress WALL•E with a rendition of the scene. He had tried to impress her before by dancing the "Sunday clothes" scene, and at the time she was eager to try it. So who wasn't to say that he'd be up for reenacting another scene?
EVE felt a new resurgence in her circuits as she promptly determined this would be the best way to spend their time together. Her body rattled excitedly at the thought of it! Consequently she hurried M-O and PR-T out the door in a rush. She waved goodbye to them and closed the door to the trailer. Then, she started gathering together all the lighters WALL•E had in the trailer.
The sun was setting as WALL•E returned home from work. Work wasn't so bad, now that he wasn't alone. He could come home and see EVE's shining face everyday. Today, he was even more eager to see her because he was allowed to come home early…and only because of an odd meeting with the Captain….
"Seems like your girlfriend decided to play hooky on the project today!"
"Woooooooooo?" WALL•E asked in disbelief. EVE missed work? That was unlike her at all. What if something went wrong? His joints shivered from head to wheel.
The Captain laughed at WALL•E's reaction. "Cool your jets WALL•E! I'll let it slip this one time. I guess I have been rather hard on everyone lately. Today you can leave early, just a bit before sundown. I'm sure EVE is looking forward to seeing you."
WALL•E's solar flare readings pulsated rapidly in response to the Captain's words. Looking forward to seeing him? While he was thrilled at the news, he couldn't help but feel suspicious: was EVE planning something, or was the Captain just playing around?
Either way, he was about to find out so he hurried on home. He was thankful that he could come home at a decent hour. Recent work escapades left him coming home late, only to catch EVE in her sleep mode. He was beginning to miss the times when they could just be…
He was driven out of his thoughts as he noticed the trailer in sight. But as he approached the trailer, he was surprised to find the door closed, with M-O banging on the outside of it.
"Mmmmooo!" WALL•E hollered.
"WALIII!" M-O squeaked in surprise. His red light on his head began blinking in relief that WALL•E showed up.
"Eeeeva?" WALL•E asked, pointing to the trailer.
"Mruh!" M-O stated exasperatedly. "Yuyuyuyu MO!" he rattled off as he pantomimed himself being thrown out of the trailer.
"Oooooowoa!" WALL•E said sympathetically. He turned his stare towards the trailer. What could've made EVE not want to see M-O?
M-O proceeded to spin off a bunch of beeps and chirps that roughly translated how EVE had been locked inside all day. WALL•E only semi-understood him, so he went over to open the door hatch. As the door opened Hal, his pet cockroach, scampered out. It crawled up M-O, causing M-O to get irritated because his sensors read that he was a "foreign contaminant."
Before WALL•E could react he suddenly was pulled into the trailer. The door shut quickly behind him.
"MOOOOO!" WALL•E yelled, realizing he had left them both rather abruptly.
Before WALL•E could open the door he was interrupted by a slight robotic laugh. He turned and for the first time noticed something different about the trailer: it was…clean! In addition, all of his cigarette lighters were arranged around the room and they were burning brightly. His Christmas lights had been turned off so the light the fire gave off produced a different effect on the room. WALL•E marveled at its simplicity and beauty.
"Oooooooooooooooo" WALL•E cooed. He cocked his head, wondering where EVE was since he assumed she pulled him inside.
His allocation sensors quickly spotted her in front of the TV. She was hovering to the side of a mini mechanical workbench, and on the bench one of the cigarette lighters stood burning brightly in the middle.
"Eeeeeeeeeeeeva!" WALL•E exclaimed.
"Waaaaaaaalllleeeeeee!" EVE greeted back. She beckoned him to come closer and he did without resistance. As he did, she pressed play on the VCR player and pointed at the TV.
"Oooo!" WALL•E beeped as he came closer to the screen. He was charmed to see that EVE was playing Hello Dolly…but, it was weird for him to observe a scene he usually fast forwarded over. The meaning of that scene always seemed to faze him. It wasn't as clear cut as dancing or holding hands was to him.
"Eva?" WALL•E questioned, not sure what she was getting at.
"Waaaaallll E…EVE!" she stated, as if the scene was completely understandable. She pointed to the candle on the screen. WALL•E zoomed in on the picture and gasped. He turned around, realizing that all the lit lighters resembled that candle; especially the one on the workbench.
EVE laughed cutely and then pointed to the couple on screen.
"Directive…." She said with her upward smile in the eyes. Her fin separated, revealing her fingers and WALL•E's eyebrows rose in anticipation. He tapped his hands together as she watched EVE settle herself at the workbench. It occurred to WALL•E that there were other things on the workbench besides the candle, but those seemed to fade from view as he fixated only on her attractive hand lying near the lighter.
WALL•E positioned himself at the other end of the "table" and began fidgeting. He was nervous and he couldn't pinpoint why. EVE giggled because she knew WALL•E would act this way. It was just like the scene still blaring in the TV.
She continued with her plan by passing him a salvaged plate with one of the forks from his collection. WALL•E was confused because, he had seen humans in the movie eat with the fork…but that was just it…he wasn't human.
What was EVE expecting him to do?
As if reading his thoughts EVE whisked out a broken plate and a spoon and set it on the workbench. She beeped a few unintelligible sounds before lifting the spoon. WALL•E quickly followed suit and grabbed his fork. Curiously he dinged it against EVE's spoon, making her giggle with delight. Satisfied with this form of courting, WALL•E did it again and she continued to laugh. He laughed too because he loved it when she laughed.
EVE was glad that the scene reenactment was going well (even though she was modifying it just a bit), but she felt as if this was not enough to show him how much she had missed him. Her eyes lowered into sad crescent moons as she placed her spoon on the broken plate.
"Eeeevaaa?" WALL•E asked concernedly. He rolled over to where EVE sat and EVE slowly looked him in the eyes. Her gaze then trailed off to the flame in the middle of the table. She watched as the light from the lighters danced off the wall.
"Eeeva?!" WALL•E asked again. She didn't budge as she kept staring at the ornate display of lighters. WALL•E became worried so he grabbed one of her hands with both of his.
Suddenly her hand grappled his tightly and she dragged him on top of the workbench.
"Wooooooooo!" he yelped, taken aback by the roughness in her demeanor. However she did carefully lower him down on his back. And though WALL•E was confused initially; he didn't have time to object…for she enveloped him with her arms.
He liked her cuddles but this one was strangely invigorating. Perhaps the fire in the room was making EVE act so weird, but WALL•E definitely liked the attention. He lowered his binocular lids gleefully.
Suddenly the trailer door started to open. EVE panicked and flew over to the entrance, knocking over some of the lighters in the process. WALL•E panicked seeing the fire so close to the trailer floor, so he got up off the workbench and tried to fix them.
As EVE approached the door she let out an exasperated whistle as she realized that M-O, Hal, and VAQ-M were outside.
"EVA!" M-O saluted. VAQ-M bounced up and down in a greeting while Hal bounced on M-O's shoulder.
"Ruuuuuuuuuugh! M-O!!" EVE yelled as she pushed them away from the entrance. As they were being pushed VAQ-M caught a glimpse of WALL•E scurrying to pick up the fallen lighters. VAQ-M thought it looked fun and jumped above EVE to help WALL•E. But instead of helping he worsened the problem as he ended up sneezing, causing all the lighters to go out.
EVE was pissed royally so she threw VAQ-M out and slammed the door shut again. It was much darker now than before since the lighters were all out. As she reached sadly to turn on the normal lights she was surprised to see WALL•E spark a solitary cigarette lighter.
"EEEVA!" WALL•E beamed as he showed her how he was relighting the lighter. He grabbed another fallen lighter and relit it as well. He successfully got through a few, so EVE helped with the rest. In her competitively fast manner she rearranged the lighters in a different setup. It wasn't as "romantic" as her first setup had been, but it still seemed to fascinate WALL•E.
EVE hovered in close to him and entwined her hand with his again. She giggled and WALL•E guffawed in bliss. WALL•E nudged his head into her little crevice of a neck. Struck by a wave of emotions, EVE wrapped her arms around him and brought him back to the workbench. WALL•E again was confused; all he wanted to do was nuzzle with EVE but she was clearly trying a new method of wooing, and he allowed her to experiment.
"Eeeeeeva…" WALL•E said longingly with a whistle.
EVE started to lightly tap the front of WALL•E as she went thumbing around for a mechanism that would open his trash compactor. WALL•E laughed at the tickling sensation. She kept poking and prying until finally she was successful in opening him up.
"Oooooooooooowoooooooo!" WALL•E beeped in alarm.
"Shhhhh shhh…."EVE said as she stroked WALL•E's arm in reassurance. She then reached inside the compactor chamber to feel around. She couldn't help but feel curious about WALL•E. It had been so long since she could truly hold him that she felt this made up for the recent months of long work loads and less together-time.
However her poking and prodding set off WALL•E's eyebrows like wildfire: he couldn't stop laughing at the tickling sensation. He was worried that his entire body would chomp down on her hand if she wasn't careful. But on the other hand, he didn't want her to stop…
Suddenly something dropped on them that made him close the compactor on her hand. EVE let out a cry and WALL•E freaked out. He quickly opened up, relieved that she wasn't damaged, but was more shocked to see PR-T on top of EVE giving her a "signature makeover."
"I know honey I know…men…"
"NOOOOOOOOOOOOO!" EVE yelled in protest. She wondered at first how PR-T got in but it was clearly from the hole in the roof. That was going to be annoying. She grabbed PR-T and flew her out of the hole, only to see the rest of the rogue robots and Hal awaiting her outside. She knew they only wanted in, but she had to make it CLEAR to them that tonight would be her special night.
She pointed to the trailer and waved her fins to indicate an off-limits zone.
"MOMOMOMOMOMO!!" M-O protested rapidly.
"M-O….." EVE whined. She had no choice. She transformed her right arm into the gun and aimed it at the other robots. They were shocked to see her aiming it at them. EVE beeped what seemed like a distress code but what in reality was a plea to be left alone. Indicating to her arm she shot upward towards the sky.
"Oh my…" PR-T cowered.
"Directive…understand?" EVE demanded glaringly.
All the other robots nodded as they ran off to their respective homes. M-O and Hal on the other hand stayed put.
"Mmmmoooove!!" EVE beeped.
"Woa woa woa woa!" M-O retaliated as he stood his ground. They stared each other down for a good five minutes. But EVE could no longer hold up the intimidating-girl act. She eventually gave in and her arm transformed back to normal. She sighed and patted M-O on the head.
"EVE…..r-r-re-greeeet…." EVE struggled to say, in an apologetic manner.
"MmmmOO!!" M-O said as he shook her hand with his roller arms. He gave her a wink, signifying that he understood and forgave her. He then gestured at Hal to follow him so that EVE and WALL•E could be left alone.
As they headed off EVE retreated back to the trailer through the hole in the roof. She found WALL•E still lying on the workbench amidst the fact there was no more light in the room. The lighters had all gone out, extinguishing her hard work. The only light in the trailer came from the moon's glow through the roof.
She was frustrated that she would have to relight the lighters again. As she was about to reach for one she was surprised that WALL•E reached for her arm.
"Pppplease…Eeeeeva…." WALL•E said, his face aching for her to just be with him. EVE sighed in a robotic whistle, her perfect night with WALL•E had been ruined. She hovered over him and tried to feign a smile in her eyes. But WALL•E knew she was upset.
"Eeeevaaaaa…..bzzzzzzzzz!" WALL•E beeped. His grip on her got tighter and she was surprised and mostly relieved to see that he still wanted to continue, despite the fact the fire was no longer ablaze. So she sank down to his level and lied down by his side on the workbench. They laid there as they stared up at the moon shining through the roof. After a few minutes of just staring at the moon, WALL•E turned onto his side. He nudged in closer to give her a slight bump on the head— it was WALL•E's way of kissing. She giggled as she rested her head on his side.
"Awwwwwwwwwwwwwwww" WALL•E sighed rapturously. EVE's eyes smiled and she slowly leaned in to give him a jolt—her version of a kiss. WALL•E was struck dumb every time she did it and his solar readings beat faster and faster as she continued to spark him. WALL•E wrapped both arms around her bio-stasis torso chamber in a squeeze. All of a sudden the door to her chamber opened. WALL•E whistled curiously as he reached inside her chamber, tapping the area where the "plant" was stored.
"Ooooo" He beamed and she laughed the way she did when she was always tickled. WALL•E laughed along as her laugh got louder in the process of investigating her chamber. Then, just as quickly as they had started, he took his hand out and she closed her bio-stasis chamber. She rested her head on his side as she panted in a mechanical fashion.
"Walllll E…." she said in an alluring manner.
"Eva…" he cooed while closing his binocular lids.
EVE was beginning to reconsider that their night wasn't a complete disaster. She was happy that WALL•E was having fun and that was good enough for her. She squeezed him tightly again while WALL•E nestled his head and gave her a concerned look. He knew there was still something up with EVE; otherwise, why would she go to such elaborate measures to make sure they were alone? He felt bad for his pet and the other robots. They were only curious after all…
"EEEE….M-O…..Vvvv..VAAqqqqqqum…Prrrrrrr Teee?" WALL•E said slowly, regretting the manner in which they were treated earlier.
EVE placed a hand tenderly on his head. "Wall…. E…." she said apologetically as she intertwined her other hand with his. Her eyes looked almost embarrassed as she chuckled nervously. Sensing her guilt WALL•E quickly got up and waved his hands as if it was no big deal. He held one finger up, motioning for her to wait. He grabbed one of the lighters scattered about the ground and brought it to her. He flung it open, starting the flame. Then he held it up to her.
If robots could shed tears, EVE certainly felt like she wanted to: she realized that he thought she was upset that all the fire went out. But that was so far from the truth. She grabbed WALL•E's hands as they admired the flame together. It had instantaneously become a symbol of their love and passion for one another.
Eventually they were broken from the fire's mystic spell when they saw that Hal had returned, squeaking for a Twinkie treat. WALL E rolled over to the moldy old Twinkie packages and opened one for his faithful cockroach. Hal then settled himself inside it for the night.
Taking a hint from Hal, WALL•E beckoned for EVE to come near, for it was getting close to their bedtime too. EVE knew it and sighed, sad that their night was already over.
Normally WALL•E would compact himself in his box and go into sleep mode for the night and EVE would do the same by withdrawing to her egg-like status. But this time WALL•E kept an arm extended out for EVE. She gripped it firmly while giving him one final good night spark. Then both of them went into sleep mode…their hands still locked in a loving embrace.