The disclaimer telling you that I don't own Zim is passed out on the floor. Just madness. MADNESS!

The Heartbreak of Carpet Tongue

Zim was not happy. His progress to conquer the Earth was at a standstill. And for once he couldn't just blame Dib about it.

"The simple truth is that while the skool provides me with some intelligence about Earth it is woefully lacking in other important matters," Zim paced back and forth in his living room. "It must be because of the age difference. The majority of humans including Dib in that place are well…"

"Kiddies!" Gir said cheerfully from the couch. "Here kiddie! Kiddie! Kiddie!"

"Yes! The Dib and those humans are merely smeets! In other words if I need to learn important information I need to hang around adults!" Zim snapped his fingers. "Now where do adults hang out on this planet?"

"Sometimes you go where everybody knows your name…!" Gir sang as he watched TV. "I love this show!"

"Gir! I'm trying to think here! What are you watching anyway?" Zim looked at the television screen.

On screen were several humans joking around in a bar. Zim frowned and took the channel changer from Gir and changed the channels. There was another television show that had humans hanging out in a bar. Zim changed the channel again and there was yet another sitcom with humans hanging out in a bar. Again he changed the channel and it showed a beer commercial.

This gave Zim an idea.

"That's it! Gir! The TV has given me an idea!" Zim crowed. "Adult humans sit around bars and drink! That is where they socialize! As they socialize they tend to relax and when they relax that is when they are at their most vulnerable! Muah HA HA HA!"

Zim went into the next room, cackling and plotting. Gir blinked at him and then back at the TV. "I think I saw this episode."


The next afternoon Zim went to a bar in his old man disguise. He led Gir on a leash in his dog disguise. "Behold Gir. A human 'watering hole'. This is where the adults on this planet socialize."

"Do they have foosball?" Gir asked.

"The best part about this plan is that Dib can't follow me in here," Zim was proud of himself. "Apparently on this planet there are laws stating Earth children can't go into bars. Laws I can use to my advantage!"

"Isn't Dib in Skool anyway?" Gir realized something.

"I've outsmarted him!" Zim snapped at Gir. "Double outsmarting! Now be quiet and observe!" He went into the bar with Gir.

The bar looked dark and dingy. There was only one man at the bar who seemed to be passed out. The bartender gave Zim an indifferent look as he cleaned a dirty glass with a towel. "No dogs in here."

"What? Who said that?" Zim waved his arm around and pretended to be blind.

"Oh sorry," The Bartender blinked. "Never mind."

"Gir, take me to a table," Zim ordered.

Gir led his master to a table in the corner. Zim sat down at the table. "Uh…One usual please," Zim ordered.

The bartender shrugged and poured Zim a huge glass of beer with a lot of foam. He placed it in front of Zim then went back to his bar and turned on the television. He watched the game. Zim just sat there for a moment and looked around at the empty room.

"Hmm," Zim mused. "We must be here a little early. Well at least we got a good seat. Ahead of the crowds."

More silence. Only the sounds of the game filled the room. Zim decided to sample the drink in order to pass the time.

"Hmm, odd looking beverage…" Zim sniffed the glass. "Oh well, when on Earth…" He took a drink. "Blech! Definitely not nectar juice. But it does have an…interesting aftertaste."

He finished the drink. "That wasn't so great. I don't see what the big deal is. Better have another."

Gir made a worried sound. "Don't worry, Gir. My superior Invader constitution can handle anything. I'm sure a couple of drinks made from some kind of Earth grain can't do any damage to me."

Twenty minutes later…

"And that's when I ssayssss to the guy," Zim hiccupped. "That's when I sssaysss…Yooooooooooouuuu can't talk like that to meeeee! Well that's what I would have said if he didn't walk away! Hey! Is anyone listening to me?"

The Bartender was more interested in his game and didn't look behind him. The other man in the room was still passed out. "Hey! I'm talking here!" Zim snapped. "Hey! You all…You all don't know who I am do you? I am…I am Zim! Zim is here! That's right! You all know it! Ignore me! Just keep ignoring me! Keep ignoring me until I take over your planet! HA HA HA HA!"

No reaction. "You are still ignoring Zim," Zim grumbled. "Hello! Future ruler of Earth here!" Still no reaction. "Hey! Hey! Pay attention to the alien in the room!" Zim tore off his disguise and revealed his alien self. Of course no one noticed.

Until a drunk staggered out of the men's room. "Ohh boy does it stink in there!" The drunk moaned. Then he saw Zim. "Hey! Hey you! You! Where have you been?"

"Huh?" Zim blinked.

"You were supposed to take me away in your spaceship an hour ago!" The drunk hiccupped as he staggered over to his table.

"I was?" Zim blinked. "Are you sure?"

"Yeah," The drunk sat down at his table. "I'm sure."

"Oh sorry," Zim hiccupped. "You know how it is. The invasion's been running a little late and stuff."

"Yeah well I'm ready to go to your home world of Pluto now," The drunk hiccupped.

"Pluto? I'm from Irk."

"Irk?" The drunk looked at him. "Izzat you Frank?"

"Nah I'm Zim," Zim looked at him back through equally drunken eyes.

"You know what? I think you got the wrong guy," The drunk blinked.

"Oh sorry," Zim hiccupped. "To be fair a lot of you hu-mans look alike to me."

"No biggie," The drunk waved. "Well if you're here, where's Frank?"

"Dunno…Probably late again," Zim grumbled.

"Isn't that just like him?" The drunk groaned.

"I know! Would it kill him to get here on time for once?" Zim agreed. "I mean how many times…how many times has this guy been late?"

"Too many!" The drunk agreed. "Too many."

"Thinks because he has a new spaceship and a fancy new laser he can just take his own sweet time," Zim grumbled. "You know…You know what I heard? I heard he hasn't exactly been spending a lot of time at home if you know what I mean? You know what I mean?"

"Oh yeah…" The drunk nodded. "What do you mean?"

"I don't know…" Zim blinked. "Gir! More drinks for me and my friend here!"

"Uh…" Gir looked back and forth at them.

"Gir, your master is telling you to get some drinks! Now!" Zim snapped. He turned to the drunk. "Robot dogs. What are you gonna do?"

"For some reason I feel bad about doing this," Gir went to get some drinks.

Another twenty minutes later.

"You know…People think being an invader is easy," Zim hiccupped. "It's not! It's not! You have to scout out a planet. Find out it's weaknesses. Try to avoid the big droplets of acidic death that fall from the sky while evading the stupid Dib monkey. It's not easy! It's not! I don't know how they expect me to keep to my schedule when I don't get any help!"

"Bosses are all jerks!" The drunk gulped down some beer.

"I don't understand it," Zim held his head. "I try…I try so hard. I make plan after plan…I tell my Tallest all my progress and what I've learned on time and for some reason half the time they act like they don't want to talk to me. If I didn't know any better I'd say that they sent me to this planet to get rid of me!"

"Don't take that crap! Yer doin' a great job!" The drunk patted him on the back.

"I am! Yeah! I am!" Zim felt bolder. "You know what? Next time they call I'm gonna look 'em in the eye and say…Well I'm gonna say something really smart!"

"Atta boy!" The drunk cheered. "You can take over the world any day of the week. But not Thursday because that's when the guys from Pluto are comin' in!"

"Thanks for the tip ol' buddy ol' pal!" Zim hiccupped.

"No problem!" The drunk snickered. Then he passed out on the table.

"Come Gir! We shall go and do…stuff!" Zim wobbly got to his feet. He staggered a few steps then fell on his face. "Eww…This carpet tastes like pretzels…"

Gir made a worried sound and held up Zim's disguise. "Oh yeah…" Zim staggered to his feet. "Forgot about that…Good doggy! Just put this on…" He did the best he could and staggered out the door with Gir behind him.

Meanwhile…

"I didn't see Zim at Skool today," Dib told his sister as they walked home. "He must be planning some kind of evil plot to take over the world!"

"Oh no…" Gaz said as she looked at her game slave.

"I know it's terrible!" Dib shuddered.

"I'll say! My batteries are out of juice," Gaz groaned. "And I don't have any spares! I knew I forgot something today! Stupid batteries."

"There you are! I seeeeeeeee you!" Zim laughed in triumph as he walked in front of them. Actually it was more like half falling half walking.

"Zim?" Dib blinked. Zim's disguise was a bit out of place. His beard was on his head and only one of his contacts was in.

"Ha…Ha…HA!" Zim hiccupped as he staggered towards them. "I win! I beat you! Ha! HA! HA!"

"O-kay…" Gaz blinked. "Congratulations Dib, you are no longer the weirdest person on the planet."

"YES! ZIM IS TRIUMPHANT AGAIN!" Zim cackled and tried to do a dance but ended up walking into a telephone pole. "Who put that there?"

"What happened to him? And why does he smell like that?" Dib winced. "He smells horrible like…"

"Like our old babysitter Mrs. Fiberman," Gaz remembered. "You know when we were real little?"

"Oh yeah before we learned how to change our own diapers," Dib remembered. "Now I remember. She was sauced all the time. She once put me in the dishwasher. Good thing it was unplugged."

"He he…I won and I'm gonna take over the Earth before those guys from Pluto come and there's not a thing you can do about it Dib!" Zim cackled. Then he realized he was talking to the telephone pole. "Oh wait you're over here! Don't do dat again!"

"Whatever happened to her anyway?" Gaz asked.

"I heard she ran off with the mailman," Dib said. "Or was it she ran over a mailman?"

"Smeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeettttttts!" Zim hiccupped and wobbled around.

"Dib…He's drunk!" Gaz was stunned.

"Yer smeets! Yes yer are…" Zim pointed at Gaz. "Little smeety legs and smeety eyes and that smeety nosey thing on your smeety smeet face…Hic!" He then fell on his back. "I'm down!"

"Great. Just what I need at the end of a crappy day of skool," Gaz groaned. "A drunken alien."

"How did this happen?" Dib asked.

"Oh Master's plan didn't work…" Gir was worried. "Oh oh…"

"Obviously," Gaz sighed. "We'd better take him home before he does something really stupid. Well, stupider."

"Gah!" Dib was frustrated but even he couldn't take advantage of Zim's drunkenness. "Fine! We'll take the stupid jerk back to his base and help him even though he doesn't deserve it! Why do I always have to be so nice and unselfish?" He grabbed one of Zim's legs.

"Beats me," Gaz grabbed the other leg and they started to drag him to his house. "It's not like I encourage it."

They made their way to Zim's base. "It's locked and of course Zim probably won't let us into his stupid secret base," Dib grumbled.

"Just dump him in the back yard," Gaz ordered. "The fresh air is better for him anyway."

"My tongue is made of carpet…" Zim moaned in agony as they dumped him in the backyard. "Carpet tongue is very bad. BAD!"

"So what happened?" Dib asked.

"Master went to the adult information place and had too many funny drinks," Gir explained.

"Adult information place?" Dib asked.

"Where everybody knows your name," Gir said. "Norm!"

"Let me see if I get this straight," Dib held up his hand. "Zim's latest scheme was to gather information about Earth…In a bar?"

"Oh how horrible," Gaz mocked. "Hide the beer nuts."

"Zim don't you know that alcohol kills brain cells?" Dib was disgusted.

"Yeah and you have few enough to spare as it is," Gaz agreed.

"Zim I knew you were a stupid alien but I didn't know you were this dumb!" Dib shouted.

"Yeah? Well you're a…Flubble…flooby…" Zim drooled before he passed out.

"Well that's just gross," Gaz recoiled as Zim's drool leaked out of his mouth.

"You know Gaz I'm afraid I've reached some kind of ethical dilemma here," Dib thought. "I mean on the one hand I'd love to capture Zim while he's intoxicated in this state and reveal his secret to the world. But on the other hand my morals which make me better than this stupid alien slime ball say that it's very wrong to take advantage of someone while they are drunk. Oh ethical dilemmas! Personal integrity verses the future of mankind. What do you think I should do Gaz?"

"You wanna draw on his face with a marker?" Gaz took one out of her backpack.

"That'll work," Dib grinned. "Let's go with that."

"Me too! I wanna make a smiley face!" Gir said cheerfully.

The next day…

"Oh my head…" Zim lay his head on his desk. In addition to his normal human disguise he had a lot of marks on his face and a smiley face on his forehead. Across his face were the words I'M AN ALIEN!

"Zim I told you, you can't go to the school nurse," Miss Bitters snapped. "She's too busy taking care of her own hangover."

"Ohhh, my brain has turned to mushy mush…" Zim moaned.

"Class, it's time for your oral reports. This should be dismal and completely boring. Dib, I take it you have some stupid report on some kind of stupid paranormal thing from your imagination?" Miss Bitters snarled.

"Not this time Miss Bitters," Dib said cheerfully. "I have a different report I call: Why Alcohol is Bad!"

"Ohhhhhhh…" Zim moaned in agony.

"Alcohol is a very bad drug. It kills your brain cells and impairs your judgment," Dib said cheerfully. "And you can get very sick where even the smallest sounds can be very painful. Like this…" Dib scratched his fingernails on the chalkboard.

"AAAAAAAAAAAHHHH!" Zim screamed as he clutched his head. "Why does everything hurt Zim?"

"Furthermore alcohol blah blah blah blah…" Dib's words seemed to slur together in front of Zim. As hard as he tried to focus Zim couldn't make sense of anything.

Until of course Dib scratched his nails on the chalkboard again. "AAAAHH!"

"And that is my report," Dib ended cheerfully.

"Amazing, you actually did a report that made some sense," Miss Bitters grumbled. "Of course there is a rebuttal argument but I can't legally express that opinion until you all turn twenty one. And I do enjoy the sound of nails on chalkboard and seeing a shiver of terror on the spines of children. Congratulations, you haven't completely disappointed me today."

"Thank you Miss Bitters," Dib said cheerfully. He grinned at Zim as he sat down. "How'd you like my report Zim?"

"I….Hate…You…" Zim gritted his teeth in agony. "Soooooo…much!"

"Miss Bitters I'm sorry to interrupt your class," The drunk from yesterday staggered in. "I know I was supposed to do your teaching evaluation yesterday but I just go so overwhelmed in a meeting…"

"They move Happy Hour to a different time, Superintendent Smith?" Miss Bitters sneered.

"YOU! YOU'RE THE ONE WHO TOLD ME ABOUT THE INVASION FROM PLUTO!" Zim shouted as he pointed to the superintendent.

"Pluto…Wait a minute…I know you!" Superintendent Smith pointed. "You stiffed me with the check yesterday!"

"You're the one who got Zim drunk?" Dib yelled.

"You gave a student of mine alcohol?" Miss Bitters yelled. "And you dare to criticize my teaching?"

"Uh I gotta go!" Superintendent Smith gulped as he ran out of the room.

"Come back! Zim wants to know more about Pluto!" Zim yelled as he chased after the Superintendent.

"Hey maybe the Superintendent will give us something to drink too?" A kid shouted.

"Yeah why does Zim have to get all the good stuff?" A girl yelled. "Let's get him!"

Everyone fled the room screaming and yelling. Everyone of course except Dib and Miss Bitters. "And everybody thinks I'm the crazy one around here?" Dib yelled.

"I need a drink," Miss Bitters groaned.