Kim Possible is owned by a soulless corporation that makes Ebenezer Scrooge seem like the spirit of the holiday season.
Many thanks go out to CajunBear 73 for beta-ing above and beyond the call of duty.
Write a review get a response in your stocking before Christmas day. (I hope)
In an old city bar, that is never too far; from the places that gather, the dreams that have been.
It was a nondescript building that sat between two larger edifices of far more imposing construction. Everything about it practically screamed ordinary. And that was its owner's intension. The Old City Bar had stood in the same spot for over one hundred years. It had watched the town grow up and out. It and the owners had watched the people inhabiting the city move about their lives in a frantic hurry, always running to the next appointment or the next destination. It had even seen the dawn of the age of heroes; with two of its own answering the call.
In the safety of night, with its old neon light; it beckons to strangers, and they always come in.
The inside could only be called comfortable. Rich cherry wood decorated the walls, polished to a warm glow by countless hands over the long years. The tables were large and sturdy, the chairs inviting, the atmosphere cozy and relaxed. Small lamps hung from the ceiling and bathed the room in a warm light.
In the back of this establishment sat a remarkable woman trying to look ordinary. She was dressed for the cold Colorado winter in a long coat, gloves, scarf and hat that she did not remove despite the comfortable temperature of the room. In spite of the heavy clothing the observers could tell she had an attractive figure. Her hands were long and delicate looking regardless of the coverings she wore. Her dark hair was luxurious, thick and full; its length when she stood, reached the small of her back. What set this particular woman apart from the other patrons in the room was the light green skin that occasionally would be seen. Shego sat in her favorite chair and watched the heavy snowfall outside the window with a glum expression.
And the snow it was falling, the neon was calling; the music was low, and the night Christmas Eve.
She didn't need the disguise anymore. The blanket pardon that she and Drakken had received by the United Nations for their help in defeating the Lowardians last summer was being honored by the United States and most of the member nations. The few that didn't honor it, she had no plans to visit anytime soon. So she couldn't care less about them. No, her dressing the way she did was more habit than caution. That and a basic distrust of most people and institutions in general. She hadn't been so successful for so long by being careless. And she was too set in her ways to start changing now.
The reason for her somber and tweaked mood came from the snow and where she was. It was Christmas Eve and she was stuck in Middleton, of all places. Usually the holidays meant her favorite S's: Sun., Sand and Sea. She would usually be found on a tropical beach sunning herself without a care in the world.
Instead she found herself in this winter purgatory avoiding Drakken. For some reason he wanted to spend Christmas with his mother this year. And he had convinced her to forgo her normal routine to go with him. It had gone just as she expected. His annoying pink haired mother was just as insufferable and loud as ever. After two days she had had it and walked into town, found her old watering hole and was prepared to sulk the holiday away. The only good thing she could take comfort in was that Kimmie wasn't around to make her life more miserable than it currently was. She and her sidekick hadn't been seen since their high school graduation. Reports of them flying away after their graduation party had been all over the 'net. The rumors concerning the destination and activities they were engaged in were plentiful and probably full of it.
And here was the danger, that even with strangers; inside of this night, it's easier to believe.
So Shego sat in the bar surrounded by her fellow patrons with the low hum of conversations all around her, Christmas music playing softly in the background, watching the falling snow, allowing herself to relax. And remember what had gone before and speculate on what might happen in the future.
Then the door opened wide and a child came inside; that no one in the bar had seen there before.
Shego watched the young girl walk into the bar with a confidence that was somehow unsettling for one so young. She was a cute thing, maybe about seven, with glossy black hair and a serious expression on her Far Eastern features. She was dressed for the weather in a large wool coat, scarf, mittens and a ridiculous Fearless Ferret hat, that somehow looked right on her. She walked up to the bar, looked up at the bartender and spoke in a quiet voice that carried a subtle authority.
And she asked did we know that outside in the snow; that someone was lost standing outside our door.
The bar had gone strangely silent just as the young girl spoke. The endless hum of conversation died to a fleeting whisper. The Christmas songs playing in the background somehow acquired a new and deeper meaning.
Then the bartender gazed through the smoke and the haze; through the window and ice to a corner streetlight.
Shego silently stood and walked to the window. Outside she could see the young woman the girl was talking about.
Where standing along by a broken payphone; was the girl the child said who could no longer get home.
The snow started to fall harder, coating the outside with a layer of white that hid the streets under its frosty embrace.
And the snow it was falling; the neon was calling, the bartender turned as said, "Not that I care. But how do you know this?"
The child turned and focused on Shego. It was if the young girl was talking only to her.
The child said, "I've noticed if you could be home you'd already be there."
Shego felt as if the entire world had been reduced to just the two of them. She was captured by those old/young eyes, with wisdom beyond their years, counterpointed by that young and innocent face; a knowing gaze which seemed to look into her very soul.
Her focus on the girl was shattered when she saw the bartender suddenly move to the back of the bar.
Then the bartender came from behind the bar. And in all of his life he was never that far. And he did something else that he thought no one saw; when he took all the cash from the register drawer.
Shego watched with a sense of disbelief when the older man grabbed his coat and opened the front door in preparation to follow the child.
Then he followed the child to the girl across the street. And Shego watched from the bar as they started to speak.
Shego watched as the bartender and the young woman talked. Her body language at first was tense and anxious, but relaxed somewhat as the conversation went on. Shego watched as he pulled out his cell phone.
Then he called for a cab and he said, "Middleton Airport." In a low voice that, nevertheless, was loud enough for her to hear.
Put the girl in the cab and the cab drove away. And she saw in his hand that the cash was all gone; from the light that she had wished upon.
Shego watched as the cab pulled away from the curb. Then she searched for the child. But the child wasn't there, just the wind and the snow; waltzing dreams through the air.
Then she turned back inside, somehow different I think. She sat down at her table and ignored her drink. She closed her eyes tight and let memory carry her back. To better times with her family before the comet changed it all. Snowball fights and snow forts came to mind. Trick or treating with her bothers, the thrill of picking out new clothes for school and the anticipation of seeing old friends separated by the summer. She let these happier thoughts wash over her. Shego opened her eyes and, with a determination usually reserved for fighting Kim Possible, she dug out her phone checked for an old unused number then pushed Send.
She waited for pickup then spoke, "Hello Hector...its Sasha... Sasha...your sister...Shego, you big blue dolt! No, I didn't call to give you grief... I just wanted to say... Well Merry Christmas, OK? Yeah, it's snowing here too. Where am I? Does it matter? Just wish the boys Merry Christmas for me huh? Yeah, well sometimes... I miss you too. And if you ever repeat that I'll track you down and fry you; got that?"
A smile touched her lips at his response to her threat.
"Yeah, that's me, full of Christmas cheer. Look I gotta go now...yeah...Merry Christmas to you too." She hit End, and then said softly to the disconnected device, "I love you too."
Shego rubbed her hands over her face for a moment then she sighed, rolled her eyes skyward and pressed another number.
"Hello Dr. D. Have you eaten yet? No? Well good, I'm on my way back in a bit. Yeah, I just needed to clear my head a little. See you soon."
She disconnected her phone a second time, put it back in her pocket, picked up her drink and watched the snow fall through the frosted glass.
And the cynics will say that some neighborhood kid; wandered in on some bums in the world where they hid.
Shego put her coat on, walked outside to wait on the cab and looked at the streetlight across the way. The cab drove up to the bar. Shego looked around for a minute then opened the door and got inside. The car drove off into the night. She was lost in thought and didn't see the small form, shrouded in shadows, watching her from across the street.
But they weren't there so they couldn't see; by an old neon star on that night, Christmas Eve.
Two hands appeared out of the darkness and grabbed the small girl by the waist. "Gotcha!"
She felt herself being lifted off the ground by strong caring hands, then turned around to behold the smiling face of her brother; Ron Stoppable.
"OK, Han playing ninja tag with you is fun an all but we got to get back to Kim's house soon. They'll be starting their Christmaspalooza anytime now." With that statement The Chosen One of the Yamanuchi School, along with his baby sister, the weapon against the ultimate evil, The Yono, walked back into the shadows whence they came.
When the snow it was falling, the neon was calling; and in case you should wonder, in case you should care.
Ron Stoppable was carrying his baby sister when he walked through the back door to his girlfriend's home with a shouted, "Merry Christmas Possible clan!" The door shut behind them as they were warmly welcomed by all inside.
The cab stopped outside of the modest house of Mama Lipsky. Shego got out, paid the driver, then walked up to the door and opened it with some trepidation. She spotted Drew standing by a radio trying to sing carols. He motioned her to stand by him. She walked over to him, grabbed the drink he had in his hand and started singing along with the rest of the family.
Why we're on our own never went home; on that night of all nights we were already there.
A/N This tale was inspired and the lyrics were included of Old City Bar by Trans-Siberian Orchestra. Some of the lyrics were altered a bit to make it more appropriate to the KP universe.
Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays from the Screaming Phoenix