A Repository of KP Shorts
Kim Possible and the characters and situations of the Kim Possible universe were created by Mark McCorkle and Bob Schooley for the Disney Channel and are the copyright of the Walt Disney Corporation. This is a non-profit fan work for free distribution through the world-wide web. No breach of trademark or copyright is intended.
This is going to be a series of short stories where I take Kim Possible, her friends and her enemies places dictated by my own imagination. These short stories are not part of any larger continuity and will only be linked if I specifically say so in my introductory notes.
Censor: T – Just for safety's sake
In this first story, I wanted to change the game plan a little. Let Kim face off against a foe who is competent and who just might have planned a head. A foe who, perhaps, isn't quite what Kim thinks he is and may not want what she thinks he wants.
Zorpox the Conqueror
Kim flexed her fists and glared at the blue-skinned... thing that had once been her husband. "I'm not going to be stopped by the face you wear, Zorpox," she hissed, focussing on him and not on the myriad automated weapons glaring unblinkingly at her. "I'm not going to let the fact that you were Ron Stoppable get in the way. I'm not letting you conquer the world."
Zorpox's laughter was all the more horrible because of its clear echoes of Ron's easy-going chuckles. "Ah, my dear, dear wife," he mocked. "So naive in her simplistic view of the world. Still, it will be my pleasure to educate... Please don't move, Jocelyn or it will be your last movement. There have been four robot laser guns trained on your head from the moment you entered this chamber." To the left and slightly behind Zorpox, Joss froze and her eyes tracked to her older cousin's face. Kim nodded, clearly seeing the bright electric green of the ranging lasers on the younger woman's forehead. Joss nodded back, swallowing slightly and allowed her assassin's knife to fall from her hand.
Kim kept her focus on her enemy. Joss was a big girl and could work out her own escape plan. "Zorpox, whatever your crazy scheme is, it won't work."
Ron... Zorpox raised an eyebrow mockingly before swaggering away from Kim and Joss and sitting on his 'throne', a chair that Kim suddenly realised was a duplicate of the Emperor's command chair from The Return of the Jedi. "On the contrary, my darling Kimberley Anne, I think it has the greatest chance of working. It was Wade, ironically enough, who inspired me. A simple enough notion: that the world's over-reliance on microprocessors could easily be its downfall. In even the simplest appliance now, there is a microchip controlling its functions. It was child's play, once I knew my target, to subvert them. All I have to do, my dear Kimberley Anne, is to press a single button and every advanced weapon system in the world will be reduced to a pile of expensive scrap metal!" Zorpox laughed evilly. "Can you imagine it, my love? Armies, navies, air forces, all disarmed! Turned into poorly-trained light infantry relying on small arms to resist entire legions of my mecha and robot soldiers! With one move, I would become the single mightiest power on this planet, able to impose my will on anyone."
Kim winced. She could well believe it too. Ron always did have a near-supernatural ability with technology and Zorpox had that ability honed to a razor's edge. "Ability to conquer isn't the ability to rule, Zorpox."
"Of course not," the blue-skinned megalomaniac replied in a surprisingly convivial tone. "Which makes the civilian services' reliance on the same technology so convenient. It is he who controls information technology that controls who receives supplies. Medicine, fuel, transportation, electrical power, communications services... even the staples of food and water! How long do you think that civilisation would last once they were cut off?"
"But... but millions would die!" Joss protested.
If Zorpox was affected by that fact, he hid it well. "About four to five billion actually, Jocelyn, once you factor in the deaths from disease, starvation and cold after the first full year. Within ten years, my simulations suggest that the human population of Earth would have shrunk to less than sixty million, less than one percent of its current numbers."
"You MONSTER!" Kim screamed. "I won't let you do it! This ends here!" She charged forwards, only to strike an invisible electrical barrier that blew her half-way back across the room. When Kim staggered to her feet, she saw the smirk on the would-be-world conqueror's face.
Zorpox's deadly brown eyes seemed to hold Kim prisoner as firmly as any metal clamp or force-field. "My dear Kimberley Anne," he purred. "What do you take me for? I am not an imbecile like Lipsky, who would casually reveal his plot to you so you can upset it at the last minute!" Zorpox laughed dangerously. "Do you really think that I would have allowed you here into my inner sanctum or told you anything if you had the slightest chance of stopping it?" He laughed scornfully at the expression of growing horror on Kim and Joss' faces. "I threw the metaphorical 'switch' over an hour ago, whilst you were still fighting your way through the synthedrones posing as my elite bodyguards! By now, I should imagine that most of the remaining large-scale resistance has been... pacified."
Kim's face drained of all colour and she nearly collapsed. Was it possible that she had... failed? Could it be that Zorpox had... won? NO! Her mind refused to give up. She would find a way to reverse this! She would resist! Even if she had to pull the remains of this world together to fight this madman with her own bare hands! However, first she had to find this maniac's weakness so she could exploit it. "So... when do you make your announcement?"
Zorpox seemed genuinely puzzled. "Announcement?"
"Declaring victory and the enthronement of the Emperor Zorpox the First?" Kim put a lot of scornful irony on the title and name.
Zorpox grinned. "Oh, my darling wife, there won't be any 'announcement'. Indeed, beyond a few score souls, I doubt that anyone will ever know what really happened tonight." Zorpox seemed to enjoy looking at the expression of shock and confusion on the two women's faces. He pressed a button on one of the armrests of his 'throne' and two office-style chairs popped up from the floor. "Please, sit," he said. "No need for you two to stand there like you are about to do anything, because, you aren't." Kim regarded the chair in front of her as if it were a torture implement. Finally, at an impatient gesture from Zorpox, she sat. A very nervous Joss, only too well aware of Zorpox's comments about robot lasers tracking her, did the same.
"My dear Kimberley Anne," Zorpox began. "Do you have any clue how much work is involved in being the sole ruler of a planet? The paperwork alone staggers the mind!"
"I haven't researched it the way you have, obviously," Kim said sarcastically.
Zorpox laughed in response. "Probably not. Combined with the armies of bureaucrats and flunkies you would have very little power, very much work and absolutely no fun. That really isn't my style."
"So then...?" Joss began.
"So what is my ultimate plan, my dear cousin-in-law? Simple in the extreme. I will rule this world by one remove. Even as we speak, specially-programmed advanced synthedrones are taking charge of the battered remains of governments and armies, rallying the people and waving the flag. With their supreme organisational abilities, they will overwhelm the robot armies invading our beautiful world. After their hard-fought victory, it is they who will, naturally enough, be entrusted with leading the post-war rebuilding. Guided by my hidden hand, they will put together the organisational tools required to minimise the loss of life caused by this dark day when the microchip turned against the civilisation that had become its slave. These great liberators will, naturally enough, become the guiding lights and implicitly-trusted leaders of the coming age of rebuilding."
"One you have mapped out," Kim said in a dangerously mild tone.
"Of course," Zorpox agreed cheerfully. "I will provide the overall direction and the guiding vision and my creations will direct the people. New educational programs, new standards for communications and entertainment. New rules about personal conduct. New, exciting visions for mastering nature and expanding humanity's reach far beyond our globe. People will bask in the glories of the new age, never knowing that it is the age... of Zorpox."
Joss then did something that both Kim and Zorpox felt was remarkably stupid. "Yes they will!" she cried out, leaping to her feet. "We'll tell them! Right Cuz?"
Zorpox looked at Joss with such withering scorn that she felt herself start to shift nervously as if she had been caught out in a horrible social faux pas by Nana. "Will you? Deprive a people who have had their civilisation crushed of their last hope? Could you do that? Could you deprive of humanity of their one remaining hope of reclaiming what was taken from them? Ninety-nine percent of the world's population dead, Jocelyn Marie Load. All on your conscience. Every last one of them. Could you do that?"
Joss paled and swallowed, looking like she wanted to be sick. Finally, she shook her head convulsively and, with a broken expression of defeat, sat down again with an audible 'thud'.
"Why?" Kim breathed out. "Why are you doing this?"
"Ah! At last we reach the important question," Zorpox announced. "There are many reasons but my personal power is not as high up the list as I imagine you believe that it is. Here." Zorpox reached out and handed a surprised Kim a flash drive. "Your own personal copy - I have several others in various places, as well as a master on my personal system. It will run on your Kimmunicator."
Kim looked at the finger drive with some suspicion. "What is this?"
"Call it... 'The Zorpox Manifesto'," the super-villain replied. "It started off as a hobby really, whilst I wasn't creating new recipes for the restaurant, but it became my guiding light and my reason for my being." Zorpox leant back. "In some ways it is a list. It lists all the injustices ignored, all the corruption so endemic and ingrained into every level of every institution, both governmental and commercial, that any meaningful reform is impossible. It lists all the casually-plotted and carried out crimes of governments, corporations and religions for hundreds of years. It maps out how, throughout history, the desire to possess a few shards of shiny metal of, more recently, see a slightly higher digit on a computer print-out has motivated men and women alike to carry out the most horrible atrocities. It shows how the ordinary man and woman, the 'salt of the earth' has become so hypnotised with near-poisonous fast food, legal narcotics, mindless and corrupting 'entertainments' and carefully-censored 'news' that they think they live in a paradise and will do and think whatever those controlling those commodities tell them to do or think. This document shows how society is sick from its core to its skin and could never be reformed by ANY non-violent means."
Zorpox had nearly been shouting towards the end of that rant and he clearly needed to take a few breaths to calm himself again. "And the most horrible thing, KP, was that I realised we were not helping - indeed, we were enablers of this slow-motion stagnation and corruption. Protecting it and allowing the rot to fester on and continue as it had for centuries, untroubled."
"Ro... Zorpox," Kim had to catch herself because, for a few moments, she was half-convinced that it was Ron, her wonderful, open-hearted husband who could be moved to tears by a tragedy on the TV news or would rant for hours about injustices that no one seemed willing to counter. Worse she found herself half-agreeing with this madman's view of society as being incorrigible and irredeemable, suitable only for being swept away. "Zorpox, it isn't our place to decide how this world is..."
"If not us, then who, Kimberley Anne?" Zorpox snapped. "The voters perhaps? Who are given lists of candidates who are carefully-vetted to ensure that they will not trouble the existing order and who are told by the so-called news media who is and is not an acceptable candidate to vote for? Who are told even what to think or believe? Who are carefully guided to accept only certain political views as acceptable and that any radical plan for change as inherently dangerous and wicked?"
"Or perhaps we should place our hopes in groups like the police or Global Justice, who are appointed, funded and ultimately controlled by these self-same politicians, controlled by corrupt vested interests?" Zorpox shook his head firmly. "No, KP, as much as it broke my heart, I realised that there was no way to change things from within the system, for the system itself was created to prevent this change from taking place!" Zorpox sighed. "They would all use the same excuses about 'proper process' and 'lawful and constitutional means', either not knowing or not caring that these processes and laws only existed to protect this malignant canker from ever being changed."
"Woah! Crazy conspiracy theory much?" Joss sneered.
Zorpox, surprisingly enough, did not seem offended. "My dear, Joss," he said. "My dear, wilful, stupidly courageous Joss. The only true 'crazy conspiracy theory' is the belief that there is no conspiracy. Oh, there is no monolithic structure, I agree. No one cabal controlling everything, but there is a de facto conspiracy of common purpose and method held by many different informal ruling groups that is just as powerful, or even more so, than any mythical 'Illuminati'."
Zorpox smiled again, this time a bitter, rueful smile that broke Kim's heart. Suddenly, it was two years ago, for it was the same smile on Ron's face when he suddenly announced to her that he was leaving their home and that he didn't know when or even if he would return. I'm gonna change the world, KP, he had told her. But I can't do it myself. So I've brought back Zorpox. Then he had shot her with a taser he had hidden in the palm of his hand and had calmly walked away as she lay, convulsing and only semi-conscious, on the porch.
"No one else could or would do it, KP," Zorpox said, and now he did sound like Ron. "No one else would step up to the plate. So it was left to me, KP. I decided that I would save the world, not by working from within this corrupt, sick society, but breaking it, melting it down to its base elements and then reforging it anew. A better world, KP. A saner world. A more just world. I can do this. I must do this or I will never be able to face God when I finally reach the judgement seat. And, if I must, I will do it alone."
Kim started when she realised that Zorpox's impassioned speech was finally over. She looked into his warm brown eyes and then her eyes tracked down to the gloved hand extended to her. Kim's mind refused to accept what she had heard, what she was now seeing. "I don't want to do it alone, KP," Zorpox continued. "You've always been my strength. Will you be that strength for me now and for the long lifetime ahead of me of struggling to make this world what it could be? What it should be?"
Kim swallowed and looked at her own hand which was already half-way out to touch Zorpox's... or was it Ron's? Nothing that had happened here made any sense any more. None of it fitted in with Kim's preconceptions and she was having a hard time deciding on who it was sitting opposite her and what it is she was supposed to do next. "As... as your Queen, Zorpox?" she asked in a shaky, disoriented tone of voice.
Zorpox smiled in that heart-rendingly familiar way. "No... What was it the Pentateuch said when describing the first wife? Ah yes... 'a companion for him as a helper and a compliment for him'."
Kim swallowed harshly as she looked at the love and the silent plea in Zorpox's expression. She looked at her hand, her treacherous hand that was half-way to taking Zorpox's and heard Joss' gasp. She looked at her cousin and saw the terror in the younger woman's eyes, the certainty that, in the end, Kim's love for Ron would overwhelm every other consideration, that Kim would choose to stand with her husband. That she would betray everything she had ever believed in to be with the man that she loved as much as she loved life itself.
Suddenly, Kim pulled her hand back and felt a strange sort of guilt as she watched anger, sorrow and pain flash over Zorpox's features. "No, Zorpox," she said at last. "I would never help you. You are the antithesis of everything I believe in. I would never co-operate with someone determined to be a tyrant, even if he wishes to be an enlightened tyrant." Kim couldn't miss the near-hysterical level of relief on Joss' face but she couldn't shift her own deep and overwhelming feeling that she had just committed a betrayal as black as the one in Gethsemene.
Zorpox sighed and all emotion fled his face, leaving behind an icy, metallic mask of duty. "Very well," he said at last, his eyes narrowed. "In truth, I had half expected this, Kimberley Anne. You were always the believer of us. The one who saw the best of all possible worlds. You saw a flag and saluted, you saw an authority and trusted it and you believed the best of everyone." He snorted and continued with a mocking smirk. "Except Bon-bon and Shego, of course."
There was no gesture, no indication that Zorpox had summoned them but suddenly the room was filled with Zorpox's nightmarish skeletal war robots. Merciless metal hands seized Kim and Joss, binding them hand and foot and forcing shock-collars onto their necks to cause pain if they attempted resistance. "Take these ladies to their... guest rooms," Zorpox commanded. "They are to remain undamaged until I decree otherwise... unless they insist on being too tiresomely heroic, of course."
As the robots (that Zorpox had deliberately designed to resemble the robot skeletons from the Eliminator movies) dragged Kim and Joss out, Kim had one last barb to throw. "I'll stop you, Zorpox! I'll free the world from you! I won't do it for any of the reasons you think! I'll do it for Ron!"
Zorpox's expression did not change until Kim and Joss were gone and the doors to the chamber had closed and sealed again. As the ultimate, secret ruler of a new age sat alone in his mighty throne at the centre of his place of power, an observer might have been startled to watch a single tear run down his blue-skinned cheeks. "Merciful God," he whispered into the still room. "Merciful God, give me the strength that I need to do this alone."