Look!  It's me!  I'm not dead!  And yes, I realize this idea has probably been done before.  And I apologize in advance for any stupid errors I may have made.  I've got the flu.  It's almost but not entirely unlike fun.  And I don't think I've said or written anything that makes even a little bit of sense in over 24 hours.  It also makes me cranky, so I also apologize for sounding all mean and nasty.

Disclaimer:  I don't own IZ.  I also don't own The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy.  I do own this lint I found in my pocket.  *brandishes lint at reader* See?

The universe is a very strange place.  It is inhabited by many strange people, and is a backdrop for many strange events.  Many of these events, besides being very strange and inexplicable, are also very unpleasant for the often equally strange and inexplicable people that participate in them.  This is why it is a popular view among the more enlightened races of the galaxy that mucking around with the aforementioned strange events is not a very good idea at all.  In fact, some supporters of this opinion go so far as to say that it is a very bad idea.  Its most adamant supporters will tell you that it's best to avoid the entire strange, inexplicable, mucked-up thing we call the universe altogether.  Unfortunately, like most good advice, this is impossible to follow.

            Arthur Dent was having a bad day.  This was nothing unusual; most of his days were bad.  However, this day, for a variety of reasons, was shaping up to be even worse than most.  He assumed it was Thursday.  He never could get the hang of Thursdays. 

            Arthur wandered along a corridor with a cup of something nasty from the ship's Nutra-Matic in his hand.  As he walked, the corridor began to twist and distort.  The walls writhed with bizarre colors.  Seven purple donkeys wearing bathrobes strolled past, chewing on gumdrops.  Fish fell from the ceiling, flopped around on the floor, and disappeared.  Arthur plopped down on the floor and leaned against a giant polka-dotted hotdog stand that had just materialized there.  He shut his eyes.  The kaleidoscope of colors and shapes flitting across the walls was making him queasy.

            Arthur Dent was used to things like this.  He was aboard the spaceship Heart of Gold, which used the powerful Infinite Improbability Drive to propel itself through time and space.   The more improbable an event was, the more likely it was to occur when the Drive was activated.  Over the course of his travels, stranger things had happened to Arthur than fish falling from the sky.  He knew that as soon as the ship reached its destination and the Drive was shut down, everything would return to normal.  He gave a bitter little smile at the thought of anything in his life being normal. 

            Several pink-frosted cupcakes floated past.  A pair of sneakers danced the tarantella with a blueberry pie.  A woman's voice came over the ship's Sub-Etha broadcasting system. 

            "Improbability factor of two to the power of twenty-two million to one and falling."

            Arthur wondered where in the Galaxy they were going, but decided after a moment that he was really happier not knowing.

            "Two to the power of thirteen million to one and falling…"

            Arthur opened his eyes, just in time to see an acid green octopus float through the nearest wall and swallow a kitchen sink.  He shut them again.

            "Two to the power of four million to one and falling..."

            "Two to the power of eight hundred thousand, four hundred and twenty two to one…"

The hotdog stand Arthur was leaning against disappeared.  He whacked his head rather hard against the floor, which was now orange and blue checkered. 


            "Two to the power of one hundred thousand, three hundred and four to one and falling…"

            "Two to the power of--"

            The Sub-Etha speaker shut off.  The Heart of Gold gave a sickening lurch, hurling Arthur against the corridor wall.  There was a crunching noise and the sound of twisting, shrieking metal.  The ship stopped moving.

            Arthur sat up rubbing a large bump on his head.  Something wasn't right.  Against all his better instincts, he climbed to his feet and treaded down the corridor to the bridge to see what the matter was.

            On the bridge, all activities had collapsed into chaos.  Trillian, the woman whose voice had been broadcast over the Sub-Etha system, was yelling something at Eddie, the shipboard computer.  Ford Prefect, a Betelgeusian writer for the best-selling Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy, was consulting the Guide about whatever the problem was, and Zaphod Beeblebrox was kicking the Heart of Gold's Improbability Drive control console.  Marvin the robot was slumped dejectedly against the far wall.

            "Hello?" said Arthur.

            No one responded.

            "What's the matter?" he tried a little louder.

            One of Zaphod's two heads turned around long enough to look at him.  The other kept its eyes on the console he was pounding.

            "That's the matter monkey boy," Zaphod said, gesturing with one of his three hands at the Heart of Gold's viewscreen.

            Arthur looked at the viewscreen, puzzled.  "But there's nothing out there.  Not even any stars."

            "Exactly," replied Zaphod.

             Trillian turned away from her argument with Eddie.

            "The Improbability Drive is frozen at two to the power of two thousand and three to one."

            As if to illustrate her point, a violin materialized playing 'Happy Birthday' and bouncing off the ceiling.  Four other things besides the violin also materialized moments later.  One of them landed on Ford Prefect.

            "Hey!" Ford yelled in surprise.

            "Aaah!  My spine!" yelled the thing.

            The other three things landed with a thump on the still orange-and-blue-checkered floor.

            "Get off me Dib."

            "Ow.  I can't!  Zim's stupid robot thing is laying on my head!"

            "I liiiike yoooou."


            Ford pushed off the figure that had fallen on him and stood up.  The figure also staggered to its feet.  Ford peered at it.  At first glance it appeared to be a little boy.  His skin was an awfully weird shade of green, though, and his black hair sat crookedly on his head.  An antenna was visible where his hairpiece had been knocked askew.

            "You!  Humanoid!" Zim glared at Ford.  "How did I get here?"

            Ford looked at him strangely.  "You must have gotten caught in the ship's Improbability Field.  What's your name kid?"

            Zim glared some more.  "I am no kid.  I am ZIM, most feared of all Irken invaders.  Who are you?"

            Ford stared at him like he was crazy, and answered in his most placid talking-to-lunatics voice.  "Ford Prefect."

            Zim continued to glare.  Ford began to wonder if he was actually glaring, or if that was the way his face always looked.

            "I demand that you return me to the planet," Zim demanded in a demanding tone of voice.

            "I'm afraid we can't do that," Trillian interrupted.  "Our ship's engines are disabled."

            Dib finally managed to shove Gir off his head.  "You mean we're stuck here?  But I'll miss Mysterious Mysteries!"  He gaped at Zaphod.  "Gaz!  Look!  Another alien!  This must be an invasion!  WE'VE BEEN ABDUCTED!!"

            "Shut up Dib," Gaz replied.

            A giant pitcher of lemonade upended itself over Zim.


            Arthur Dent surveyed the scene from the door with a sort of horrified amazement.  Trillian stared.  Zaphod laughed hysterically.  Ford groaned.  He really hoped Eddie could repair the Improbability Drive.  Fast.

            You have reached the end of the fic.  Please go back…now.  But leave a review first.  Pleasy please?  *sneezes*  I go drown my germs in cough syrup now.  Bye!