A/N: Bleh...Just bleh...This chapter update came out just plain god awful. Absolutely one of the worst chapters I've written in the history of posting this story. I can't even begin to tell you guys how disappointed I am in myself for uploading such horrible content here. For DAYS now though, I've been trying to revise this chapter, making changes here and there only to read it back to myself and hope it flows together a little better. But nothing I've done for this chapter has seemed to work so far. So, for the time being, I think I'm just going to leave it alone. Post what I have written out and hope to come back to it a different day. Perhaps I've just hit a rut with my writing as of late. Nothing seems to want to flow properly and I'm beginning to think I might be in need of a proof reader.
That being said, if anybody would like to offer me a helping hand, I'd be more than happy to accept any and all help I can get with this story. Truth be told, I really want to start going back to revise some of the older chapters in this story. But sometimes I tend to go overboard with adding too many details to my chapters. If any of my current, up-to-date readers would like to help me out with scaling back some of the clutter in my writing, please feel free to PM me. I'm honestly just struggling right now, and even writing this description is proving to be difficult for me.
I'm sorry this chapter update is complete and utter shit. I'll try harder with the next chapter I post...
ZADR Orange Chapter 193
Warnings: Extreme OOCness
Rating: M for later chapters
Disclaimer: We do not own Invader Zim, nor any of the characters from it. We do not make any money from the writing of this story.
Staring down at the ground in silence for a moment, as though engaged in a mental trance of sorts, Dib couldn't deny his blunder in that instant for having mentioned his father amongst the list of individuals whom considered him to be insane. Despite his best efforts to navigate the verbal playing field he'd been tossed into unwillingly, he had somehow managed to box himself in again, his attempts at remaining unscathed and detached from this entire conversation having been thwarted time and again now by his unpredictable emotions. With nowhere left to run any longer, he drew in a steady breath of air before thinning his lips in defeat. The best he could hope to do to escape this situation in haste was simply answer Jade's question honestly, only hoping the resulting blow to his pride wouldn't render him completely defenseless to her continued dissection of his personal life and feelings. "...He hates me...And I hate him..." he finally answered after an uncomfortably long stretch of time had passed between the three of them, his gaze remaining glued to the floor below as he avoided eye contact with both Jade and Zim alike.
Looking back at Dib wide-eyed and concerned when he spoke those words, as though pensively hesitant to agree with the hybrid's rather harsh statement, Zim then shifted his gaze off to one side with a vaguely unsettled look on his face before nodding his head almost robotically, having already decided beforehand that he'd support Dib throughout this therapy session no matter how he truly felt in regards to the topics in question. Still though, he couldn't completely rid himself of the mental image of the professor they had witnessed back down in front of the lobby elevators, his tired demeanor and disheveled attire having reminded him of the time he'd gone door to door searching for Dib himself. Although he knew now wasn't the time be bringing up the previous memory wipe he'd mentioned giving Membrane back a few months ago, he couldn't help but wonder if Dib might ever have a change of heart were the two of them to meet again in absence of Dib's disguise. Regardless of everthing they'd already been through, the professor was still Dib's father and Zim couldn't help but sympathize with him on some level now that the time was drawing nearer for their own smeets to be born. The thought that a bond as sacred as that between a child and their parental unit could so easily be severed had an almost irrational fear building within his body despite his best efforts to always remain composed when in Dib's presence.
Sensing the other's growing discomfort in spite of his attempts to conceil those feelings from him, Dib then lifted his head to cast Jade an almost cold-blooded gaze. "Can we go now?" he asked in a voice vacant of emotion. At this point, he wanted nothing more than to just leave this damned office, the conversation having gone from bad to worse now that he could recognize Zim's hidden unease. "I want to go home...Please..." he then looked back up at Zim pleadingly, hoping the Irken hadn't been too shaken up by some of the things he'd said during the course of this therapy session.
An ache in Zim's spooch for how the other was staring at him brought the disguised Irken back to reality before a gentle smile ghosted his face and he nodded in agreement to his mate's request. "Ah eenk ee aw on oow ooay." I think we are done for today. he said, not about to argue with the look the other was sending him. It was tender and soft, with an apologetic appeal to it.
Sighing but nodding her head in agreement, Jade stood from her chair to see them out. "Very well then. We'll consider our session here done for today. With cases like this though, I highly recommend coming in for a few more followup appointments. Perhaps, if you don't mind, I could talk with your aunt and uncle briefly before you leave." she then said, having been told over the phone that Rose and Jack were Dib's aunt and uncle.
Standing up to help Dib back up onto his feet, Zim merely nodded his head before directing Dib over to the exit. "Ooaay." Okay. he agreed despite his desire to head back home with Dib already.
Letting Zim lead him out of the room and back down the hallway towards the waiting room, Dib glanced back at Jade one last time before breathing out a relieved sigh.
Meanwhile, Jade merely waited by the door to her office patiently until Jack and Rose were both escorted into the back to speak with her alone. "Ah...Mr. and Mrs. Williams. Welcome. If you would, please step into my office and have a seat. I'll try not to keep you long." she insisted, gesturing with a single hand to the inside of her neatly kept office.
Both Rose and Jack sent each other somewhat worried glances before entering into the room behind her and taking a seat at the same couch Zim and Dib had been seated at prior.
Closing the door behind them, Jade then sat back down across from them. "I'm sorry to take up your time, but I'll try to make this meeting as quick as possible."
"Oh, really. This is no trouble at all. Please. Can you just tell us whether there's anything that can be done for Deb?"
Sighing a bit at that question, Jade turned in her seat to face Rose better. "Truth be told, she wasn't very cooperative when I had her back here earlier. Hardly said a word, really. Honestly, at this point, I'm not so sure there's much that CAN be done for her unless she's willing to return for continuous appointments with me. But even then, I'm not quite sure that would be the best course of action for her. She doesn't want to be here. That's fairly obvious, and as I told Zim, there's not much I can do for somebody who doesn't want to help themselves. But perhaps something else can be done to help manage her anxiety." she then stood to walk over towards her desk so she could pull out what appeared to be a notepad and pen. Opening the pad of paper, she flipped through a few loose pages before then jotting something down. "Tell me, have you considered starting her on any medications at home as an alternative to regular office visits?"
Staring at the prescription currently being written with an underlying nervousness present in her body language, Rose could only sigh at that inquiry before answering Jade's question. "Deb hates to self-medicate. She doesn't want anything to hurt her baby during the course of her pregnancy, and if she found out we gave her pills, she'd never forgive us." she shook her head in a disapproving manner.
At that, Jade lifted her gaze from the notepad to flash Rose an apologetic look. "I'm sorry I couldn't be of more help to you then...There's no denying that Deb is dealing with a great deal of anxiety right now. And while I don't usually prescribe medications to pregnant patients especially, this is the only course of action I can suggest to you at this point in time to help manage her anxiety. I'll leave you with the written prescription should you change your mind. You only need give her half a pill every 12 hours or so. Just place it into one of her drinks and it should dissolve." she said, handing over the slip of paper to Rose despite the cunning nature of her prescribed instructions. "Of course, you're free to try other home remedies first if you'd rather steer clear of medicating as a treatment option. The nature of her outbursts aren't any better for her baby though than these pills would be. I highly recommend bringing her in for another appointment with me, perhaps after her baby is born, to see whether she might be more receptive to receiving help from me in the future." she then offered despite having her doubts in regards to Dib's willingness to cooperate.
Glancing back at Jack uncertainly, Rose could hardly make out the expression on his face for a moment until finally he sighed out in defeat at the therapist's ill-advised recommendations.
"We'll take the prescription for now...but try other alternatives first."
"Fair enough, then. I'm sorry there wasn't more I could do to help Deb, especially after seeing how much love you all have for her. But I don't think this is a matter that can be remedied by having her talk to somebody she considers to be a stranger. What she really needs right now is for those who care about her to just be there and listen to her."
Nodding his head with an all too discouraged tilt to his posture, Jack combed a hand through his hair nervously for a moment before slipping the piece of paper securely into his pocket. "We understand." he said before sending his wife an almost guilty look for having agreed to partake in such measures.
Standing to escort them back out into the waiting room, Jade followed them back to the reception area before bidding them her final farewells. "Please keep in mind that my office is only just a phone call away. Should you need any further advice or even like to set up another appointment with me, you can do so anytime." she clarified before leaving them to pay at the front desk so she could prepare for her next appointment.
Nodding back at her as they made their way back out into the front area, both Jack and Rose exited the main hallway to find Zim and Dib sitting huddled up together in a corner, waiting patiently for them.
"Come on, you two...Let's get going now..." Rose said in a soft voice to the two boys as she broke away from Jack to distract them as he paid. Taking a seat next to Dib so she could wrap an additional arm around the hybrid, she then helped Zim to get him back up onto his feet so they could hustle him out the door. "Jack and I have got a bit of surprise for you both anyways since we're out here in the city today..."she smiled weakly at them, just wanting to cheer the both of them up after putting them through that ordeal.
Joining them at the door once he had finished paying for everything, Jack then followed the trio down the hall towards the elevators until finally Rose pulled back to whisper something in his ear. A small smile spread across his face at his wife's words. "Alright, I can do that." he flashed her an almost sneaky grin as they headed for the elevators.
Sticking close to Dib, meanwhile, Zim kept both his arms securely wrapped about his hybrid for protection, one hand supporting his lower back while the other remained firmly placed over his extended belly in a back and forth stroking motion.
Slowly beginning to relax as they headed for the building's exit, Dib sighed the second they were outside once again, tiredly slumping against Zim as they made their way to the car, just happy to finally be leaving that place.
Unlocking the doors once they had found their parking spot out on the street, Jack climbed into the driver's seat hurriedly before glancing back to make sure everybody was seated and buckled in. "Alright, everybody. Buckle up. We've got just a few more stops to make before heading back home for the day." he said, starting up the engine and waiting for an opening in the traffic to present itself so he could pull out and navigate his way to where Rose wanted him to take them.
Making himself comfortable against Zim meanwhile, Dib almost immediately curled himself around his extended belly protectively, purring and closing his eyes tiredly when Zim began petting him softly. He was tired and nearly drifted off for what felt like only a few seconds before jolting back awake when he realized they had stopped moving again. Blinking his eyes open faintly, it wasn't until he heard Rose calling out to him that he finally brought a hand up to rub the sleep out of his eyes.
"Dib...Diiib...We've got a surprise for you." Rose smiled wide at him when he finally opened his eyes fully.
"H-Huh? Wh-Where are we?" Dib asked between fatigued yawns.
"Climb on out of the car and see for yourself." Rose gleamed at him from her spot in the front seat, already feeling ecstatic as she pulled back to exit the car and meet him on the other end.
Glancing up at Zim, who seemed equally perplexed by their current location, Dib got out of the car nonetheless to find themselves on a small, busy little street lined with lots of stores and crowds of people walking up and down the sidewalks. Rose smiled at him giddely, taking them both by a hand each and telling them to close their eyes and not peak. Shrugging back at Zim, Dib did as he had been told before linking his free arm with Zim's as Rose led them up onto the sidewalk and a little ways down the busy street.
"Alright. You can open your eyes now. We're here." Rose said, stopping off at a little store just on the corner and positioning them both in front of said establishment.
Peaking just a single eye open at first and then another one, Dib couldn't help breathing out a tiny gasp when he realized exactly where it was Rose had taken them. "Oh, wow..." his eyes grew perfectly wide in awe. Right in front of them was a small window display neatly arranged with a variety of beautiful, white wedding dresses inside.
"What would you say to getting some wedding shopping done today?" Rose then chimed in, smirking back at them as she had been planning this outing since the night before in the event things hadn't gone well at the therapist's office that day.
His eyes currently glued to all the wedding dresses in the store, Dib couldn't even bring himself to answer back right away. "Are we...Are we allowed to go inside?" he finally asked once he had found his voice again, blushing at his own question but really wanting to get a better look now.
"Well, of course we can, Dib." Rose smiled wide at the hybrid before taking his hand again to guide him into the store.
Zim, meanwhile, could only remain standing perfectly still outside the fancily-decorated bridal store however, temporarily thrown off guard by the unexpected diversion. He felt a jittering in his stomach before a sudden and almost overwhelming amount of stress and anxiety began to seep into his very being. Sure, he had proposed to Dib, but it suddenly felt as though things were moving far too fast for him. There was still so much he didn't understand about Earth customs and he was terrified he would only end up screwing this all up and hurting Dib in the process.
Allowing Rose to lead him inside to have a look around, Dib smiled a bit to himself before stopping once he realized that Zim wasn't following them any longer. He glanced outside the door to see the other staring at the entrance unsurely. "A-Aren't you coming in?" he asked, not wanting to do this with just Rose alone.
Coming up behind Dib, Rose then sent Zim a slightly concerned look when she noticed how pale he had suddenly become. "Yeah, Zim. Don't you want to see Dib try on some dresses?" she asked, deciding to approach this situation with a different tactic in mind.
His antennas drooping a bit when Zim didn't respond to either of their questions, Dib then made his way back outside to where the Irken was standing, taking him by one of his hands and nuzzling the disguised invader comfortingly. "Please come inside..." he then whispered into the alien's antennae softly, his request matching that of the tone he'd used to break Zim out of his earlier daze when pleading with him to leave the therapist's office.
A/N: And there you have it for Chapter 193. Until next time~