I don't own Powerpuff Girls or the any songs used in this fic.

High Blue Skies

Not a cloud in sight.

An oddly peaceful day, Ace mused, walking nonchalantly down the streets beyond Townsville. He wasn't exactly sure why he was here, or why he was alone for that matter. He had had the urge to get out of the hangout - the others had stayed behind because both Grubber and Big Billy were feeling sick, and Snake wanted to watch some show. Lil' Arturo was... somewhere. Being Lil' Arturo, Ace guessed.

He stuck out like a panda bear on a farm. Across the street, little kids momentarily stopped their games and looked at him. Some had enough guts to even point at him, saying something to their friends, starting a round of mischievous giggles. Ace decided to ignore the runts - he felt too mellow today, something that didn't happen often. For once he didn't want to beat the snot out of anyone. It was a... somewhat nice feeling.

A house stood out from the others, and Ace paused, lifting his shades to inspect it. The world was a lot brighter beyond the black glasses, and it irritated Ace. He had begun wearing sunglasses most of the time because he simply didn't like the sun - and let's admit it, he looks way cooler with them on. After a while, though, Ace kept wearing his shades because his eyes had become sensitive to any strong light. Sunlight burned his eyes, even after just a short time of exposure.

It was the house of the Powerpuff Girls. He'd never really been there before, but in reality there wasn't anyone in Townsville who didn't know where the Powerpuff Girls lived.

Now that he thought about it, Ace hadn't seen Bubbles, Blossom or Buttercup in a really long time. Not since that race for the key to the world. Not that he had any reason to have seen them. He and the gang had been... quieter for the last couple of months. It was strange. Everything just seemed to have tone down.

Ace sighed. He toed the cracks in the white sidewalk, staring at the three round windows that probably led to their rooms. He could see something red poking out - Blossom was looking down into the front yard. Amazingly, whatever she was looking for distracted her from noticing the Gangreen Gang member, who was still standing right before their house. Pulling herself back inside, she said something to another person - Bubbles or Buttercup, Ace guessed - and walked back into the room, out of sight.

Ace licked one of his fangs. Then he strode across the street, keeping his gaze fixed on the house. He didn't know exactly why he was doing this. It seemed to be happening without much consideration. But he wasn't worried about anything - why, he honestly didn't know.

He stood on their lawn, but to the side of the house, close enough to the wall so that he couldn't be seen from the window. He plucked a leaf from the hedge, ripping it apart and chewing on the vain for a few seconds.

Something caught his attention. Ace looked up. He heard something; it was a familiar song, being sung by a familiar voice.

I need a gun to keep myself from harm

The poor people are burning in the sun

But they ain't got a chance, they ain't got a chance

I need a gun, 'cause all I do is dance.

'Cause all I do is dance...

Ace recognized the song. He kept looking towards the roof, walking the length of the wall until he reached the back yard. He stumbled into the backyard.

Beds of flowers, neatly organized by color gave the yard an optimistic feeling. Ace hissed. A rose thorn had snuck beneath his pants leg, stinging his ankle. The roses grew against the back wall like a disease, their vines and thorns and leaves clinging tightly along the face of the wall.

Ace gazed upwards once more, just in time to see a limb fly by. The voice sounded again.

I need a gun to keep myself from harm

The poor people are burning in the sun

But they ain't got a chance, they ain't got a chance

I need a gun, 'cause all I do is dance.

'Cause all I do is dance.

Curiosity was getting the best of Ace. Without deliberation, he began to ascend, digging his long green fingers into the areas with the least amount of thorns. He stabbed the points of his shoes into the wall, using them to help him climb. It was a slow process, but eventually Ace got high enough to look past the lip of the roof.

It was Buttercup - or at least, Ace thought it was Buttercup. She looked so different. First off, she was taller, and her arms and legs had gotten longer. Buttercup's hair wasn't in it's usual flip, but pulled back into a small ponytail, with strands escaping to hand in her face. She was wearing light brown tights, blue shorts, and a green, sleeveless button down shirt. Held in her fingerless hand was a light green tSphere Mini; the earphones hung in her ears (ears?), and faint music could be heard.

Buttercup had been lying down on the flat roof. Now she was dancing around, singing, twirling in circles. Her eyes were closed and the music distracted her ears, so she did not notice when Ace pulled himself onto the roof with her.

Buttercup had gotten to the part of the song with more rapping, and she was fumbling over the words, eventually choosing to simply listen. Ace - who's random confidence spurred him on - calmly plucked an earphone from Buttercup's head and stuck it in his own ear.

Buttercup jumped, instinctively turning and giving Ace a good hard punch in the face. Luckily it wasn't too hard of a punch, and if it had been anyone else it might not have hurt so much. But Buttercup was Buttercup, and even a gentle punch from her still hurt the face.

Ace hissed again, one hand going to his slightly bleeding nose and the other to the earphone, keeping it in place. But Buttercup had paused the music and was staring at Ace with indignant disbelief. "You? Ace? I thought I was being attacked - what the heck are you doing here, anyway?" Here emerald eyes narrowed.

Ace smiled from beneath his hand. Once he stopped the bleeding, he whipped the hand on his pants and reached over to Buttercup. The Powerpuff flinched, but Ace's finger merely poked the play button.

Seems like everybody's out to test ya
'til they see your break
You can't conceal the hate that consumes you
I'm the reason why you fill up your Isuzu

Buttercup stared at Ace, but the Gangreen Gang member simply raised his brows at her, asking her if she was going to join him. She blinked. Her eyebrows ere furrowed, but for some reason Ace's relaxed air made her a little less tense. She shrugged and - keeping her distance - joined the green teenager for the next few verses.

Hill with your old lady at the tilt

I got a 90 days visit, and I'm filled with guilt
from things that I've seen

Your water's from a bottle -
mine's from a canteen!

At night I hear the shots ring

so I'm a light sleeper
The cost of life, it seems to get cheaper
Out in the desert with my street sweeper
The war is over
So said the speaker

with the flight suit on
Maybe to him I'm just a pawn
So he can advance
Remember when I used to dance...?
Man, all I want to do is danceā€¦

Ace and Buttercup shifted from foot to foot, in sync, both of them humming the music when there were no words.

I need a gun

to keep myself from harm

They stopped. Buttercup let out a short laugh, but remembering who she was sharing company with, stopped. Her gaze met Aces, and her defenses were up again. "What are you doing here?"

"What? I thought we were just havin' a moment," Ace joked. He had sneakily taken the tSphere from Buttercup's hand and was scrolling through the songs. Buttercup huffed and snatched it back. "How did you even get up here, Ace?"

Ace sighed through his nose and gave Buttercup a flirtatious smile. "No name callin'? I guess you have matured, Buttercup."

"Unlike some I'm still immature enough to punch you again; on purpose this time." Ace winched and nervously kicked a rock off of the roof.

The pebble happened to hit Bubbles, who's head had just stuck out of the window. It bounced off of her yellow bob. "Ouch." Bubbles turned and looked up. Buttercup pushed Ace back just in time so that only she was visible to the blue puff. "Buttercup, there you are! Blossom is having a fit. You haven't cleaned your side of the room yet!"

Buttercup called back, "Yeah, yeah, I'm gettin' to it!"

"She wants you to do the kitchen and living room, too!"


Bubble's gave a sympathetic smile. "Sorry. I tried to talk her out of it. You know how she is when you ditch."

Buttercup rolled her eyes. "I didn't ditch; I was taking a... lunch break."

Bubbles giggled. "But it's only ten in the morning."

"Ten in the mornin'...?" Ace muttered to himself. Was it really that early? How had his schedule been so thrown out of whack? Buttercup slapped a hand over his mouth, shushing him and looking back down to Bubbles. "Whatever! I'll be down in a sec."

Bubbles went back inside, and Buttercup removed her hand from Ace's mouth. "Don't you ever know when to keep your mouth shut?" she asked, bad tempered. Ace shrugged his shoulders, holding up his hands. "Is there ever a time when no one wants to her my voice?"

Buttercup scoffed, but she was also dangerously close to smiling at Ace's teasing. She sighed. "I'll make a deal with you; if you leave now, no more of this nonsense, I'll help you down."

"What makes ya think I'd take that kinda deal?"

"Do you honestly want to climb back down those vines?"

Ace put a finger to his sharp chin, as if thinking it over. "Ah... Okay."

Buttercup smirked. She put the tSphere into her pocket and grabbed onto Ace's arms, gently flying him down to the ground across the street from the house. He gave her a mock salute. "Thanks cutie."

"Don't call me cutie, punk. Or you'll get a black eye."


Both hero and villain winced. "Good luck with Blossom."

Buttercup shrugged. "Who needs luck? I don't need luck. I live with that thing. See ya."

"Will I?"

Buttercup smirked. "Maybe."

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