DISCLAIMER: Nothing from Kim Possible belongs to me, though I misuse it all at will. The Cthulhu Mythos doesn't belong to me either, but it suffers as well. Soundtrack for writing this story: Victims of the Modern Age by Star One/Sitra Ahra by Therion. Shuffle play is a wonderful thing.
There was a time, thought Electronique, when Hallowe'en was a day to be dreaded. When other children were out trick-or-treating, having fun, she had only watched through the window of their small house, wishing she was out there with them.
"Yvonne, come away from zere." Mother's sharp, staccato voice. Everything about her had been sharp and staccato. "Eet ees time to pray. Pray espechially for zose children out zere. Their parents don't love them enough to teach them abaout God. Their zouls are in mortahl danger, taking part in this devil's holy day."
Then she would be forced to join in mother's all-night prayers. Mother insisted that her little girl grow up prim and proper and pious.
She never knew her father.
"Religion," she growled, only half to herself. "I hate eet."
"Vhat?" Professor Dementor was still hovering over the vat like some sort of ominous Macy's Parade balloon, adjusting the seven dish antennae that surrounded it and its thick, black contents. "Vhat are you hating, liebling?"
"Eet's nothing. Just thinking aout lowd." She had no belief in the supernatural. Science was all. Science had made her a living battery, a human dynamo. Science had fueled all of Dementor's evil endeavors, down through the years. It was practically inevitable that they would meet; less inevitable, but no less real, was the attraction they had immediately felt toward each other.
As a team, as a couple, they would achieve what they had failed at alone: world domination.
She looked down at the scribbled sketch in the book she held, comparing it with the massive biochemical device before her. The formula would only work on Hallowe'en night. Not because of evil spirits or the devil's dominion. Because of the ten-dimensional vril force emanating from Aldebaran. A force that manifested itself on Earth on that night alone.
Science, not superstition.
She wondered what 'tekeli-li' meant; the gibberish word was nervously scrawled all around the picture. Wondered what the author's handwriting had looked like before she lost her mind.
It didn't matter. "Move ze third anteenna just a leetle to ze left."
Sloppily bound, photocopied from the hand-written original, the book was the key to so many scientific secrets. The babble about unguentum sabbati, the flying ointment of witchcraft legend, had concealed a cheap synthesis of the rare anti-gravity element topsyturvium. The nonsense about "the reversed angles of Tagh-Clatur" held the answer to portable teleportation devices.
The belts she and Dementor wore were the fruit of those discoveries.
And then there were the other things, the things that made it so hazardous. There were only a few copies of it in the world, most of them in the hands of dangerous cults, worshippers of the Great Old Ones who had given the nameless book a title: Revelations in Green and Black.
Again superstition obscured the scientific truth. Those terrors were not gods to worship or demons to command. They were something else entirely.
Five years earlier Drakken's sidekick-turned-lover Shego had somehow contacted the Old Ones, using the nearly limitless power they gave her to allow them access to this universe, almost destroying the world in the process. No one knew exactly why their invasion had failed, but their abrupt departure had left the snarky, self-assured superwoman a broken invalid. Powerless. Hopelessly insane, afraid of her own shadow.
Electronique smiled. She hated Shego almost as much as she hated her mother.
"I know that smiling," said Dementor playfully, spinning slowly in the air as he tinkered with the antenna. "That is the smiling of der pleasant thoughts. Und they are-?"
"I never thaught I would evar say this, but we owe Shego a lot. After all, eet ees her crazy book that has given us all zis." She had written it in the asylum. As therapy. Hidden in her delirious drivel was the colossal knowledge of the Great Old Ones, the secrets of creation.
It had taken them nearly a year to distill the logic from the lunacy, but it was there. Soon they would control a form of life never before seen on their world. According to the Revelations, they were originally created as servants of the Elder Things, otherworldly opponents of the Great Old Ones' leader Cthulhu.
Elder Things, Elder Gods, Ancient Ones, Great Old Ones: a confusing mess, to be sure. Only a maniac could make sense of it. They had no intention of trying. The ekitainingen, the liquid creatures would be enough.
"Ach," grunted Dementor, finally descending, "der process, it is in place. Der vril accumulators, they are making vith der focusing. Very shortly ve vill be putting, ooh, such a HURTING on ALL the things ve HATE!"
The antennae hummed an Armageddon locust-song; the solution in the immense cauldron began heatlessly to boil.
Electronique nodded, satisfied. "Ze Stoppables will be ze first on ze list. Ze whole family, Stoppables, Possibles, the lot of zem. Weeth them aout of ze way, absolutally nathing can stop us." She set the book down just as the alarms began to squall.
Someone had invaded the lair. Someone was on to their plan.
Someone was going to be very, very sorry.
"Go," she said. She stood up, electricity crackling all around her. " I weel guard ze experiment. Een less than an hour we weel have our army."
"Whoever it is, they vill not be LIVINK TO SEE IT! I shall TREAT them to our latest TRICK!" Like a virtuoso pianist, Dementor played a silent tune on the keyboard of his belt.
There was a time, thought Kim, dodging the blasts from Dementor's robot guards, when Hallowe'en was about costumes and candy. About running with Ron through the Middleton streets, laughing at each new mask they saw. A time when danger was make-believe and fear was fun.
It was Hallowe'en, and things were very different now. The costume she wore was a cybertronic battlesuit; the danger both to herself and to the world was very real.
There was no time for fear.
The familiar signal had beeped unexpectedly; she had almost ignored it. The Kimmunicator had been silent for nearly a year. Virtually all her foes were either behind bars or reformed; even her most relentless nemesis, Dr. Drakken, was Dr. Drew Lipsky now, famous for the invention of the telepathic amplifier, the device that had revolutionized the treatment of mental illness.
She frowned, thinking about Drakken and Shego, and keyed the Kimmunicator. "What's up, Wade?"
"What? No 'sitch?'"
"OK, 'what's the sitch.' Happy?"
"We're certainly snippy this evening."
"Tell me there's more to this than evaluating my snippiness. We're taking Cinnabar on her first trick-or-treat run tonight. Red Riding Hood."
"You might want to reconsider that. I've got a strange energy signature coming from somewhere in the Himalayas. The same energy I found right before Shego went all demi-god on us."
A sharp pain shot through her back, across her ribs. Mind over matter, she thought; the wounds are healed, but the scars remain. "You're kidding."
"Wish I was. It's not her; she's with Drak – Dr. Lipsky. Already checked."
"Was there – any change?"
"He couldn't talk long. Said Hallowe'en was particularly" – he swallowed – " hard for her." There was a deep sadness in his eyes. After the Lorwardian invasion, after the UN pardon, after the courtship and marriage, the whole world had seen Shego and Drakken as heroes. Then she had almost killed Kim, implicated Drakken in the plot, and tried to turn those other things, those monsters loose on the world. "Whatever that means. Anyway, the only villains I can't account for are Dementor and Electronique; they're more than capable of something like this."
"Yeah." She considered the situation in glum silence. "We'd be better off if it was Shego." Ron entered the room, their little daughter holding his hand, dressed in her Red Riding Hood costume, her eyes filled with a child's excitement.
"Call my parents." She barely concealed the anger in her voice. This wasn't fair. "They'll have to look after Cinnabar. Maybe the tweebs will take her out trick-or-treating."
The child looked from her mother to her father, not understanding.
Ron spluttered, found his voice. "Kim, we've been planning this all month! We can't just –"
"Tell them we've — we've got a mission."
She wanted to get this over with quickly and get back home. No one but Shego knew what had truly transpired on that awful day five years before, and she had been left powerless and insane by the experience. If Dementor and Electronique were trying to repeat that event, they had to be stopped before it went any further. She hadn't faced any of the things Shego called the Great Old Ones, but Ron had. Two of them, one far more terrible than the other.
He didn't like to talk about it.
She spun, twisted in the air, leaped from wall to wall, luring the deadly robots into lethal crossfires. No doubt Ron was in battle somewhere else in the immense mountain lair. Since he had mastered the mystical monkey power, more than one villain had learned that he was quite able to hold his own against any enemy.
Almost as good as I am, she thought, coldly smiling as the last two machines blasted each other. And I don't need monkey fu to work my magic.
Without warning Dementor was before her, his laser pistol three inches from her startled eyes. "Ach! You can my roboter destroy, Fräulein Possible," snarled the evil scientist, "but your LUCK, IT ALL IS RUN OUT!"
Kim threw herself backward, put the forcefield up just in time; even so, the blast slammed her against the far wall. She shook her head, momentarily dazed, as the small stocky man came at her, weapon drawn. "Nice of you to be bringing me THAT SELF-HEALING, SPRING-STEPPING BATTLESUIT!"
"Only thing I've got for you is a punch in the mouth." She catapulted over him; he fired wildly, his shots blasting holes in the ceiling. "And it's Fräu Stoppable now." A solid kick would bring him down – but the madman was gone, and she staggered forward, almost falling. Before she could regain her balance, a ray came from over her shoulder, singeing the hair on her head.
She turned to see Dementor hovering almost ten feet in the air above her. "Like shooting der fishies in der barrels." The room resounded with crazed laughter.
Dodging, jumping, narrowly avoiding his shots, she grabbed the arm of one of the shattered robots and spun around, flinging the machine at Dementor with all her considerable strength.
His left hand went to his belt, fingers fluttering across a small piano-like keyboard mounted there. There was a momentary emerald flash.
Kim gasped as the broken robot guard passed through empty air, crashed to the floor beyond.
From behind, his arm went brutally around her throat, cutting off her breath, pulling her against him. "Enough of der playing around, Stoppable, Possible, vatever you are." He slammed the laser gun hard against her temple. She jerked and struggled; the forcefield bubble came up, but he was within it this time. No help at all.
"Say goodbye to your pretty HEAD," he bellowed, "BECAUSE IT IS COMING OFF!"